Best friend, confidant or the funny man, call them as you wish. Their job is to make us laugh, do as the protagonist say, give advices to the protagonists and sometimes even give their life for them. Some films would not have been complete without these characters.
So, here’s a tribute to some memorable Bollywood sidekicks who gave us sterling performances….
Circuit in the Munnabhai Series played by Arshad Warsi became one of the most adorable sidekicks in the Hindi film industry. He was the perfect partner in crime Munnabhai could have ever got. He was to Munnabhai what Genie was to Alladin – “Bhai ne bola hain toh hain”.
Every character in Andaz Apna Apna has long been etched in our mind. But since we’re discussing sidekicks I’ll concentrate on Robert and Bhalla, played superbly by Viju Khote and Shehzad Khan. Both were sidekicks to Teja (Paresh Rawal). Who can forget their dialogues like “Sorry sir, galti se mistake hogaya”, “Verrrry smaart” and “Plan ke mutabiqq”.
Asrani played Chitragupt in one of the most under-rated laugh out comedies of Bollywood “Taqdeerwala”. He was immensely likeable as a full time sidekick to Yamraaj (Kader Khan) and part time headache to inspecter Ranjit Singh (Anupam Kher).
Played outrageously by Shakti Kapoor, Nandu’s accent, his mannerisms and his attire were among the highlights of “Raja Babu” for which he is remembered till date. And of course, how can we forget his dance in the song “Ah aa ee” where in all loyalty he is helping Govinda woo his girl.
I was confused if whether Bankhey was a sidekick to Kader Khan or Govinda in Dulhe Raja. You will feel the same once you have watched this film. That is the charm of the character played superbly by Johny Lever.
Johny Lever plays Gaffur, Anil Kapoor’s friend cum sidekick in Deewana Mastana. In an ensemble of ace comical actors, he gave a shining performance that has got etched in the memories of movie buffs. I know a friend who got pet-named Gaffur after this film.
Yet another mention for Johny Lever, this time for his role as a comical gangster and sidekick to Yeda Anna (Sunil Shetty) in Awara Pagal Deewana. His funny act gave him a nomination at the Star Screen Awards for Best Actor in a Comical role. He lost to Paresh Rawal who won for his role as Manilal in the same movie. Even the grumpiest of individual will roll out laughing watching this film.
Vishal Malhotra played an almost effortless role of Mambo, best friend of Shahid Kapoor in Ishq Vishk. Entrusted to provide comical relief, the actor excelled. And not just comedy, watch him in the pre-climax argument with Shahid, and you’ll know why he made it to this list.
I dare leave the girls behind !!
Pushtie Shakti and Sreejita De play Jugs and Sonia in Luv Ka The End. Both are BFF to Shraddha Kapoor and together the 3 take it upon themselves to avenge Casanova hero – Taaha Shah. Both girls did exceedingly well to provide support to their best friend in this chick flick. I admittedly ignored the plentiful cliches and similarities to English film ‘John Tucker Must Die’ and ‘Mean Girls’ as this was Bollywood’s first teen take on revenge against your sly boyfriend. In fact, I am going to go a step forward and recommend this film for all the young girls out there!
Paresh Rawal is one versatile actor who can glide into any character offered on the table. In Mr. and Mrs. Khiladi, he plays Pratap, the good for nothing brother-in-law to Kader Khan. His commentary in the tone of a news reader and ending every sentence with “Aagey dekhenge agle episode mein HUM LOG” was hilarious. Interestingly, the movie was a theatrical failure but did well on satellite channels.
As I wind up my list I would also mention actor Deepak Tijori who played best friend cum sidekick in Sadak, Khiladi and Aashiqui.
Note: 60’s, 70’s and 80’s is not my generation so I regrettably left them out. Although I am pretty sure that that era had some great sidekicks as well. Legendary actor Mehmood rings a bell.
(I do not own any of the pictures displayed in the above post. They have been added for pictorial representation sake. All text can get boring to read sometimes)