I am a disco dancer…. zindagi mera gaana. Humming this song, I realised maybe our generation can never get over the evergreen heroes of Bollywood, their epic songs and unique styles. Someone said it right Old is Gold, isn’t it! Guess whom I am referring to? Yes, you guessed it right. It’s our all time favourite Disco Dancer, our own Mithun Da!
Better known by his stage name Mithun Chakraborty (affectionately known as Mithun Da), turns 69 today. Can’t believe, how quickly time flies away.
He was a huge star in the 80’s and early 90’s, giving several smash hits in his heyday. He is till date a massive superstar not just in India but in other parts of Asia, Europe and in Africa. Even today also Jimmy, Jimmy is a top chartbuster song in all countries of former USSR (Russia, Ukraine et al).
His life has been ever colourful just like his disco dancer costume. He pioneered and did great work in all his chosen fields. He is an incredibly charismatic personality with great sense of humour and an impeccable sense of style. Mithun is a legend and he broke boundaries in Indian cinema and the prejudices against dark skinned Indians. He is also a politician and social worker who is loved by people for his commitment to their well-being. Overall he seems to a good person who should be respected for his humanity.
A Celebrated Bollywood Career
Mithun Chakraborty is – The Star of the Millennium, and was a notable dancing star in the 1980’s. He made his place in the hearts of the audiences worldwide. With Amitabh Bachchan’s dwindling stardom, Jeetendra and Anil Kapoor’s significant presence, Mithun stood his own in varied roles with some of the leading actresses. His versatility, uniqueness, down-to-earth attitude enabled him to rule the industry in the 80s and was considered the next Amitabh in those times.
He left his mark of excellence not only in Bollywood but also in regional cinemas. He worked in many B-grade movies. His fan following comes from the real indigenous masses who appreciate his efforts to depict the reality on screen rather than many A-list dumb scripts of unrealistic and over-the-top romances.
Mithun proved his worth by winning the National Award for one of his earliest films Mrigaya (1989). In the 70s and then in the 90s, he was awarded the same for sublime performances in Gudia (1997) and Swami Vivekananda (1995). In the later film, he rocked as Swami Ramakrishna Paramahansa.
Throughout the 80s and 90s, he won various popular awards in India and abroad for numerous films. His last popular award was the Filmfare award for “Best Villain” in Jallad (1995). We have to remember that not many Bollywood Actors, besides Mithun, have won the National Award for Best Actor thrice in their career. Yes, thrice! He commanded an enviable fan following not only in India, but also abroad in countries like Russia, China, Gulf countries and Africa.
Short Lived Political Career
He had a short-lived political career. Mithun Da joined politics as a Member of Parliament after he was nominated for the Rajya Sabha during the Member of Parliament elections by the Chief Minister of West Bengal Mamata Banerjee in the West Bengal Rajya Sabha Assembly Polls which were held in 2014. On 26 December 2016, he resigned as a Rajya Sabha MP. Though he worked well and was loved wholeheartedly by people, this arena didn’t encourage him to continue.
Successful Stint in Television
After leaving his footprint on the silver-screen, he influenced the television industry. He emerged as a familiar yet new face for the small screen audience.
With the success of the Bengali competitive dance reality show Dance Bangla Dance, Chakraborty developed the concept of Dance India Dance, (an Indian dance competition show that airs on Zee TV) which became India’s largest dance-based reality show changing the lives of many dancers. This show has won several television awards for most popular dance reality show. He became the Grand Master of this reality show which came up with numerous variants. He also hosted quite a few reality shows including the Bengali version of Bigg Boss and Dadagiri Unlimited, replacing Sourav Ganguly.
Second Innings in Bollywood
Mithun Chakraborty is now back in action and is giving his competitors a run for their money. He has played several memorable characters in films like Chandni Chowk To China (2009), Boss (2013), Kick (2014) and Hawaizaada (2015). The actor is now happily experimenting with roles and stunned us with the role of Leeladhar Swamy in OMG: Oh My God! (2012).
And of course how can one forget the Grandmaster on TV reality show Dance India Dance who rightfully deserves the The Grand Salute!