Happy Birthday, Aamir Khan, Mr Perfectionist @ 54

March 14, 2019 08:22
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    Bollywood superstar Aamir Khan, who celebrates his 54th birthday today, is perhaps the only actor who has limited himself to one movie a year - and what a movie it always turns out to be - Aamir's 2016 film Dangal broke all records to emerge as the highest-earning Bollywood film of all time with collections estimated at more than Rs 400 crore at the box office.

    On his 54th birthday, here's a pictorial look at Mr Perfectionist's life and career so far.

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    Aamir Khan is the second generation of a filmy family. His father was film producer Tahir Hussain. His uncle Nasir Hussain was also a famous film producer, director and actor. A third uncle, Tariq, acted in movies like Yaadon Ki Baraat (in which Aamir had a small role) and Hum Kisi Se Kum Nahin. Aamir's cousin Mansoor Khan made his directing debut with Qayamat Se Qayamat Tak, the film that launched Aamir into the stratosphere of stardom. The Khans are descendants of freedom fighter Maulana Abul Kalam Azad.

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    Aamir made his debut when he was eight, in uncle Nasir Hussain's Yaadon Ki Baarat (1973). The next year, he appeared in his father's film Madhosh. He made his debut as an adult actor in Ketan Mehta's Holi 11 years late.

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    Aamir's breakthrough role was in the movie Qayamat Se Qayamat Tak(1988), opposite Juhi Chawla. The revenge and romance tale was a blockbuster, and Aamir's 'chocolate boy' looks made him a teen idol. The song Papa Kehtey Hain Bada Naam Karega is considered something of a youth anthem and is popular even today.

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    Aamir appeared in four movies in the year 1990, including the superhit Dil, opposite Madhuri Dixit. The next year, Aamir starred opposite Pooja Bhatt in the romantic comedy Dil Hai Ki Manta Nahi (1991).

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    In 1992, Aamir charmed as a slacker schoolboy who re-invents himself as a cycling champion in Mansoor Khan's Jo Jeeta Wohi Sikandar. Loosely based on The Sound of Music, Aamir's next mega hit, Hum Hain Raahi Pyaar Ke (1993), co-starred his Qayamat Se Qayamat Tak heroine Juhi Chawla.

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    The year 1994 saw Aamir and fellow heartthrob Salman Khan appear together in the cult comedy movie Andaz Apna Apna. The actors never worked together after that movie but remained good friends.

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    In 1995, Aamir was seen opposite Manisha Koirala for the first time in Akele Hum Akele Tum, an adaptation of acclaimed Hollywood hit Kramer vs Kramer.

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    1995 brought with it applause and high praise for Aamir's pitch perfect performance as a tapori in Ram Gopal Varma's Rangeela, opposite rising star Urmila Matondkar. But despite a stellar performance, he lost the Filmfare Award to Shah Rukh Khan (for Dilwale Dulhaniya Le Jaayenge). That was when the actor decided to boycott all popular award shows.

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    Then came a series of super hit films for the actor, starting with Raja Hindustani (1996) for which he won the Filmfare Best Actor award (and didn't show up to collect), followed by Ishq in 1997 co-starring Juhi Chawla, Kajol and Ajay Devgn, and Ghulam, opposite Rani Mukerji (1998).

    Sarfarosh(1999), co-starring Sonali Bendre and Naseeruddin Shah, brought him more critical praise.

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    Another landmark year in Aamir's life was 2001, when the actor turned producer with Lagaan. It became the third Hindi film to be nominated for the Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film. The film won seven National Film Awards, in addition to fetching Aamir his second Filmfare Best Actor Award.

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    Lagaan was a hard act to follow but in the same year, Aamir pulled another rabbit out of the hat with Dil Chahta Hai, playing the brash Akash in Farhan Akhtar's acclaimed writing and directing debut. Aamir then took a four-year break and made a comeback with the poorly received Mangal Pandey: The Rising (2005).

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    The Mangal Pandey fizzle was soon erased by the success of Rang De! Basanti in 2006, which earned Aamir the Filmfare Critics Award for Best Actor, apart from other honours. The film was also selected as India's official entry to the Oscars but was not shortlisted as a nominee. The film received a nomination for Best Foreign Film at the BAFTA Awards. Aamir also appeared with actress Kajol in her comeback film Fanaa the same year.

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    Aamir made his debut as director with the warmly praised Taare Zameen Par in 2007, winning two Filmfare Awards and the National Award for Best Film on Family Welfare.

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    In 2008, Aamir was seen in Ghajini, a Hindi remake of the Tamil film of the same name. It was a major success and became the highest grossing movie of that year.

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    In 2009 came 3 Idiots which swept all the awards that year, including three National Awards. It ruled the box office charts for four years as the highest-earning Bollywood film.

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    In 2010, Aamir produced the acclaimed Peepli Live, a tale of media frenzy against the backdrop of farmers' suicides. In 2011, he produced his wife Kiran's Dhobi Ghaat, in which he also starred, and Delhi Belly, in which he made a cameo appearance.

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    Aamir ended 2012 with a bang, playing a cop in the super hit suspense thriller Talaash with Rani Mukerji and Kareena Kapoor.

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    As the calendar changed from 2013 to 2014, blockbuster Dhoom: 3, co-starring Katrina Kaif, Abhishek Bachchan and Uday Chopra, put Aamir firmly back on top of the charts, reclaiming his 3 Idiots record.

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    In 2014, Aamir smashed all records with his mega-blockbuster film PK, in which he played the role of an alien, marooned on Earth, critiquing fake godmen and superstition. The film was criticised by several religious outfits and Aamir said that the film wasn't meant to have hurt sentiments.

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    However, it would not be appropriate to say that 2015 had no Aamir Khan films for Mr Perfectionist was the voice behind Pluto Mehra in Zoya Akhtar's Dil Dhadakne Do. Pluto was the pet bullmastiff owned by the Mehra family in the movie.

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    Aamir was seen in Nitesh Tiwari's Dangal in 2016. The film was based on the life of wrestler Mahavir Phogat and his daughters, celebrated wrestlers Geeta and Babita. The film broke all box office records and Aamir earned Filmfare Best Actor award.

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    2017's Secret Superstar, headlined by Zaira Wasim, was also a hit at the box office. Both Dangal and Secret Superstar released in China also and did phenomenal business.

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    Aamir launched the next generation of the Khans, his nephew Imran, in 2008's hit romantic comedy Jaane Tu... Ya Jaane Na, which he produced. Imran Khan was again seen in the Aamir-produced Delhi Belly (2011).

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    Aamir also struck a high note in 2012 with his ground-breaking television series Satyamev Jayate, which dealt with issues and problems in the Indian society. The show, of which three seasons have aired so far, has discussed issues like female foeticide, sexual assault and disability.

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    Aamir Khan's younger brother Faisal also tried his luck in Bollywood and was first launched by their father Tahir Hussain in 1994's flop film Madhosh. Six years later, Faisal appeared with brother Aamir in Mela (2000), also a flop. Since then, Faisal's career as an actor has been limited to a handful of forgettable B-grade films and a couple of TV roles.

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    Apart from the slew of film awards he has won, Aamir Khan also received the Padma Shri in 2003 and the Padma Bhushan in 2010.

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    As a teen idol, Aamir Khan broke a legion of female hearts when they discovered that Qayamat Se Qayamat Tak's Raj was already married. Aamir and childhood sweetheart Reena Dutta have two children son Junaid and daughter Ira. The couple divorced in 2002.

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    In 2005, Aamir married Kiran Rao, who assisted director Ashutosh Gowariker during the filming of Lagaan. Aamir and Kiran's son Azad was born via surrogacy in December, 2011.

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    Aamir Khan was last seen in Thugs Of Hindostan, co-starring Amitabh Bachchan, Katrina Kaif and Fatima Sana Shaikh. The film performed decently at the box office but it was panned by critics and cinephiles alike.

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    Aamir recently produced a Republic Day-special show titled Rubaru Roshni. The actor is now rumoured to be making Mahabharata on TV.

    Here's wishing Aamir Khan a very happy birthday.

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