Shabana Azmi – the portrait of a lady

    An actress with a soft heart, a dedicated humanitarian

    18th September of 1950 in Hyderabad witnessed the birth of an extremely talented actress that Bollywood and the theatre have seen. Born to a poet and an actress, Azmi graduated from the Film and Television Institute of India, Pune, in 1973 and signed on to her first gig, Faasla. However, her first release came about with the launch of Shyam Benegal’s directorial debut called Ankur in 1974.

    Shabana Azmi – nothing compares to her

    What would define Shaban Azmi in the true sense? A living legend? An epitome of art and beauty? Or humanitarian activist par excellence?

    Although Azmi originated from a family with the same background as the career she chose, she broke the stereotypes of being a star child and proved it with her work. She bagged three consecutive National Film Awards in the years 1983-1985.

    A still from the film Mandi starring Shabana Azmi and Smita Patil

    She is known as one of the few actors who use the method acting as their form of brilliance. For quite a few roles, she brought about significant changes to her reality so as to fit in the character perfectly. For instance, in Mandi, she had to play the role of a madam of a whorehouse for which she gained quite some weight and even started chewing paan.

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