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Irrfan Khan: Why he is India's most successful export to Hollywood

January 6, 2016 7:04:02 PM IST
By Glamsham Editorial
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The National Award-winning actor Irrfan Khan, who changed the phase of Indian cinema with his natural acting skills, intense looks and versatility, set a major journey before making in big in Bollywood and Hollywood.

The actor, who will be celebrating his 49th birthday this Thursday, incepted his journey by a scholarship he earned for joining the National school of Drama (NSD) in New Delhi, while doing his regular MA.

He then moved to Mumbai where he acted in various TV shows namely ‘Chanakya, Bharat Ek Khoj, Sara Jahan Hamara, Banegi Apni Baat' to name a few.

He also acted in critically acclaimed films EK DOCTOR KI MAUT and SUCH A LONG JOURNEY. The actor saw a downfall in the career when he did many films which went unnoticed.


The actor worked even harder and then things changed for him when Asif Kapadia offered him the lead role in THE WARRIOR - a British-Indian film. The film won Alexander Korda Award for Best British Film at BAFTA Awards. This film not just marked a turning point in the actor's career but also marked a new milestone to his international career.

Next he did films like ROAD TO LADAKH and MAQBOOL (where he played the title character). Both these films earned lot of rave reviews at the International screenings, getting him recognition on the global platform.

For his first lead role in Bollywood for the film ROG, one of the critics wrote, 'Irrfan's eyes speak louder than his words every time he is in frame.” After doing many films as a lead, supporting character and villain, the actor won Filmfare Best Villain Award for his role in the film HAASIL. Critics praised his performance, saying 'As the ambitious, brash, fearless goon who is mind-blowing, he is outright scary and makes you sit up, wondering what he'll do next.'

In 2007, the actor appeared in Hollywood films like THE NAMESAKE and A MIGHTY HEART, which wonderfully shaped his Hollywood career. Not shifting his focus from Bollywood, he appeared in LIFE IN A METRO where his character was highly appreciated and he received Filmfare Best Actor in Supporting Role Award along with Star Guild and IIFA Awards.

His performance in the biopic PAAN SINGH TOMAR – an athelete who turned dacoit was highly appreciated. Along with graceful reviews, the actor won National Film Award as Best Actor for the film. He also won Screen Award, IRDS film award for national concern and was awarded Indian of the Year by CNN-IBN in 2012. The same year he also appeared in the famous superhero franchise film – THE AMAZING SPIDER-MAN and played the adult Piscine in LIFE OF PI.

After winning Best Actor Award at the Indian International Film Festival of Queensland for QISSA, the actor stunned us with his performances in PIKU, JAZBAA and TALVAR. Audiences loved his old school romance with Deepika in PIKU, his intrigued character in TALVAR and his style and action in JAZBAA. The actor has films like INFERNO – Hollywood film based on novel with the same name, and THE SONG OF SCORPIONS in his kitty for 2016!

Irrfan's journey has been nothing less than a roller coaster. At this point of his career, the actor is on a winning spree and this is definitely his hard work and determination which has made him 'The most successful export to Hollywood'.

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