Shashi Kapoor

Active - 1948 - 1998  |   Born - Mar 18, 1938 in Calcutta, Bengal Presidency, British India  |   Genres - Drama, Comedy Drama, Action

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Biography by Sandra Brennan

During the '70s and '80s, Shashi Kapoor was one of the most popular movie stars in India. The brother of beloved comedian Raj Kapoor and the youngest son of famed director Prithviraj Kapoor, Shashi is best known internationally for his appearances in Merchant-Ivory productions such as Shakespeare Wallah (1965) and Heat and Dust (1982). All told, Kapoor has worked on over 200 films internationally and in India. He was married to the late Jennifer Kendal, an actress whose parents, Geoffrey and Laura, headed the contemporary British theater troupe Shakespeareana. In 1978, Kapoor and his wife, who shared a longtime love of theater, fulfilled a longtime dream of his late father, whose troupe -- Kapoor once acted with the Hindi theater company, established by his father in 1944 -- eventually joined with the Kendal troupe to form the Prithvi Theatre. This served to build a special center to promote India's performing arts by establishing the Shri Prithviraj Kapoor Memorial Trust and building the Privithi Theatre in Bombay. It has since become one of the country's centers of cultural arts. It is also is home to the Prithvi Festival, the most important film festival in India.

Movie Highlights

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  • As a kid he travelled with with his father's theatre company Prithvi Theatres, which ran for sixteen years, across India, appearing in several plays.
  • Won three National Film Awards, including the Best Actor award for New Delhi Times (1986).
  • Received the Filmfare Lifetime Achievement Award in 2010.
  • Was honoured with the Padma Bhushan, India's third highest civilian award, in 2011.
  • Starred in over 100 Hindi films in his career.