On the 70th birth anniversary of Farooque Shaikh, Google Doodle paid tribute to the versatile actor with his most iconic character- the one where he played a nawab, in Umrao Jaan on March 25, Sunday. The actor who passed away at the age of 65 due to heart attack, was perhaps the unsung hero of Bollywood. Shaikh was an affable actor, who left behind his legacy as that of everyday romantic hero with whom the common masses could relate to.
Shaikh, is also remembered for his nuanced performances in films like Chashme Baddoor, Noorie and Shatranj Ke Khiladi, to name a few, and for television serials such as Chamatkar and Jeena Isi Ka Naam Hai. A well known theatre artist, he was also known for his theatrical performances. One of his best performances till date was in the play Tumhari Amrita alongside actor Shabana Azmi. Shaikh’s quite recent outing which struck a chord with the younger audience was none other than his limited role in Ayan Mukerji’s ‘Yeh Jawani Hai Deewani‘ (YJHD). We saw him as the doting father, he played to Ranbir Kapoor in YJHD and the with that he made his way into our hearts. His simple yet powerful dialogue to his on-screen son Ranbir aka Bunny, “Jahan tumhara jee chahe jao, Jo ji chahe karo. Jis tarah zindagi jeeni hai jiyo, humesha yaad rakhna, mai tumhare saath hun” makes him an instant favourite as we see in him what we want our parents to be.
Shaikh’s portrayal of such seasoned characters with so much ease is a reflection on the kind of treasure trove he was.
Born in an upper middle-class family in Bombay, Shaikh intended to follow his father’s footsteps and become a lawyer but destiny had something else in store for him and we got a gem of a star thereafter. He had himself said that he never considered acting despite performing in several plays with Shabana Azmi during their college days at St. Xavier’s Mumbai.
A noble and humble soul that he was, Shaikh had said that believed in celebrating life and rather not be remembered. So on this day, we celebrate you Farouque Shaikh. Happy 70th birthday to you!