The news of the death of actor extraordinaire Irrfan Khan was a tough pill to swallow. The actor turned cancer warrior died of colon infection in Mumbai at the age of 54. He earned a name for himself not only in Indian cinema but also in Hollywood. He had this unique art of injecting grandeur and gravity in any role he played. He was a part of iconic movies like The Lunchbox, Namesake, Life of Pie and Slumdog Millionaire to name a few. He has left behind a splendid legacy of talented bunch of movies His performances were magical and resonated with the audience. Every time he appeared on screen, the public looked forward for unconventional and memorable performances. He was a voracious reader and would go through his script many times to get into the character. His dialogue delivery and expressions were brushed with perfection and finesse.
He was born into a Muslim family in Jaipur. He dreamt of being a cricketer and was a skilled player. In his initial years, he worked as an AC repair man before landing into Bollywood. A student of Indian National School of Drama, Irrfan started his career with television shows like Chandrakanta, Chanakya and Bharat ki khoj based on the works of Pandit Jawahar Lal Nehru. He made his Bollywood debut with Salaam Bombay directed by ace director Mira Nair. He tasted his success in Hollywood by acting in Oscar winning movie Slumdog Millionaire in 2008. There has been no looking back since then and he had a growing clout of fans in Hollywood as well. His universal acclaim to success can be attributed to BAFTA Award nominated movie The Lunchbox where he played an accountant who strikes up a letter-writing romance with Nimrat Kaur. My personal favourite is Namesake, an adaptation of the novel of the same name by Jhumpa Lahiri, where he played the role of Ashoke Ganguly, an Indian immigrant living in America. He worked with big names like Tom Hanks, Felicity Jones, Angelina Jolie, Kelly Macdonald and many more. He represented India on a global platform with pure acting and not an iota of over acting.
His movies created an impact even if he did a cameo. He never shied away from projecting new and myriad roles. He is known for his nuanced performances across the globe. He took a break from silver screen after being diagnosed with neuroendocrine tumour in 2018. He was last seen in Angrezi Medium where he played the role of a doting father who does everything possible to actualize the dreams of his daughter. He was a legend of his craft and an undisputed king of Bollywood. He acted in over 100 films and was awarded Padma Bhushan in year 2012. He will be remembered for his versatile roles and iconic performances. His death has left a void in the hearts of millions of fans across the world and Bollywood is never going to be same without him. One of his iconic dialogues from Paan Singh Tomar is,” bheed main baghi hote hain, dacait milte hain parliament main”. A man of few words and hundred expressions, his contribution to the cinema has been fruitful and will be remembered for times to come.