used to be the great `bad guy` of Bollywood cinema during the 1970s. Besides acting in Hindi films, Prem Chopra also acted in Punjabi movies. Quite contrary to his name `Prem` meaning `love`, his persona in Hindi films exuded lecherousness, hatred, and intrigue galore on the then silver screen of Bollywood. But no one would like to believe that this young man came to Bollywood with the dream of becoming a hero, rather than a villain.
Biographical Details of Prem Chopra
This archetypal bad man of Hindi cinema, Prem Chopra
, was born in Lahore in undivided India. His upbringing was done in the beautiful hill station of Shimla. Though Prem`s father wished him to be a doctor, but Prem realized that his professional career and destiny lies elsewhere. He vigorously started studying arts and graduated from the Punjab University. After completing his Bachelor`s degree, he got a job at The Times of India at Bombay (now Mumbai) in the late 1950s.
Film Career of Prem Chopra
Since Prem Chopra had an inherent flair for acting, he always used to visit studios and presented his credentials to the known producers of that time. His acting career started got a break in a Punjabi film `Chaudhary Karnail Singh` (1962) that was based on the Indian pre-partition times. Prem utilized this opportunity and proved his mettle as an outstanding actor. The film was a box-office hit and won a National Award that gave Chopra recognition. He impressed a few people in the film industry and soon acting offers started spilling over him. He gave another applaudable performance in a Punjabi film Sapni (1963).
He got his break in Bollywood and in his early films he played rare positive leading roles like in `Shaheed`. Someone then rightly suggested him that rather than dreaming for roles of hero in films, he will have a better career if he goes for villainous roles. From Teesri Manzil and Upkaar, he started showing his villainous performances. Soon he was flooded with films in a villainous role. He became Bollywood`s cold blooded demon playing the role of a typical villain who deceived people, did conspiracy, murder, rape, or maim with an ease. His negative roles can be best valuated in films like Who Kaun Thi (1964), Sikand-re-Azam (1965), Purab Aur Paschim (1970), etc. In 1967, after the hit film Upkaar, he left working in The Times of India.
One of his dialogues from the film Bobby became very popular during those days. In 1976, Prem Chopra received the Filmfare Best Supporting Actor Award for his performance in Do Anjaane. In the list of awards won be Prem Chopra, he received the much prestigious "Legend of Indian Cinema" Award at Atlantic City (the United States) in 2004. He had also received the "Lifetime Achievement Award", the "Indira Gandhi Priyadarshini Award", the "Ashoka Award", "Lions Club Award", "Punjabi Kala Sangam Award", etc.
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