Popularly known as Big B, Amitabh Bachchan is one of the most eminent bollywood personalities. Hailing from Allahabad in Uttar Pradesh, Amitabh Bachchan was born on 11 October, 1942 to a renowned Indian poet Dr. Harivansh Rai Bachchan and Mrs. Teji Bachchan. Initially named Inquilaab, Amitabh Bachchan is not only a distinguished actor, but has also worked as a film producer, a playback singer, a TV show host and an Indian Parliament member.
Amitabh Bachchan made his acting debut with Khwaja Ahmad Abbas’s ‘Saat Hindustani’ that earned him the National Film Award for the best newcomer. His next commercial success was ‘Anand’ co-starring the superstar Rajesh Khanna. Also known as the angry young man of Indian cinema, Amitabh Bachchan has a number of commercial successes in his kitty.
Amitabh Bachchan’s acting career gained momentum with Prakash Mehra’s ‘Zanjeer’ that earned him his first Filmfare nomination for the best actor in a leading role. Amitabh Bachchan married Jaya Bhaduri in 1973 and the couple appeared in a few films together, namely Zanjeer, Abhimaan, Mili, Silsila etc.
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The year 1975 brought in significant recognition for Amitabh Bachchan as an actor as his movies like ‘Chupke Chupke’, Yash Chopra’s ‘Deewar’ and the blockbuster ‘Sholay’ not only earned him critical appreciation but the affection of public as well. ‘Sholay’ earned a gross US$ 60 million, thus becoming the the highest grossing film ever in Indian Cinema. Moreover ’Sholay’ won the special ‘Filmfare Best Film of 50 Years’ award and was declared as the "Film of the Millennium" by BBC India.
Blockbuster hits like ‘Sholay’ and’ Deewar’ helped him strengthen his position in the Indian film industry thus earning him remarkable respect and a number of Filmfare awards and nominations. Amitabh Bachchan consolidated his status as an actor by demonstrating his skills in different genres. Whether it was his comic timing in ’Chupke Chupke’ or playing a romantic lead in ‘Kabhie Kabhie’, Amitabh Bachchan was just incomparable.
His next releases including ‘Amar Akbar Anthony’, ‘Kasme Vaade’ and ‘Don’, fared extremely well at the box office. French director François Truffaut declared Amitabh Bachchan as a “one man industry” owing to his unparalleled success and unrivalled status in Bollywood. Amitabh Bachchan earned significant acclaim for his performance in ‘Trishul’ ‘Muqaddar Ka Sikander’ and ‘Kala Pathar’. His other superhits of late 70s and early 80s include ‘Mr. Natwarlal’, ‘Dostana’, ‘Silsila’, ‘Lawaaris’, ‘Shaan’ and ‘Shakti’.
During the filming of Manmohan Desai’s ‘Coolie’, Amitabh Bachchan while performing his own stunts suffered a fatal intestinal injury causing significant loss of blood. After months of recuperation, Amitabh Bachchan resumed the shooting of ‘Coolie’ and it became a huge box office success of 1983. Amitabh Bachchan decided to take a break from his acting career and joined politics by winning a parliament seat from Allahabad, his hometown. After enjoying his short-lived political career, he made a comeback to bollywood with his production company named ‘ABCL’. ABCL produced ‘Tere Mere Sapne’ and distributed the much acclaimed ‘Bombay’ and ‘Bandit Queen’. However ABCL suffered huge losses when it delayed the financial payments with respect to the organizing of Miss World Pageant in India.
At the age of 55, Amitabh Bachchan starred in ‘Mrityudata’ that could not do well at the box office. After being named the ‘Superstar of the Millennium’ in a BBC Online Poll, Amitabh Bachchan became the first living Asian to be honored with a wax statue at Madame Tussaud's in 2000. Amitabh Bachchan set new standards in the anchoring by hosting the extremely popular quiz show ‘Kaun Banega Crorepati’, which was the Indian version of ‘Who Wants to Be a Millionaire?
Amitabh Bachchan has been active in movies since then and given hits like ‘Kabhi Khushi Kabhi Gam’, ‘Sarkar’, ‘Baghbaan’, ‘Black’, ‘Sarkar Raaj’ and recent success ‘Paa’. Amitabh Bachchan has also endorsed many reputed brands including ‘Dabur’, ‘Reid & Taylor’, ‘ICICI’, ‘Nerolac Paints’ etc. He reportedly earns Rs.1.2 billion per year by doing TV and print commercials.
Rift with Raj Thackeray and close association with Amar Singh and Anil Ambani have further strengthened his recognition as a public figure.
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