Naseeruddin Shah

Naseeruddin Shah's Biography
Naseeruddin Shah

Name: Naseeruddin Shah

Birthdate: 20th July, 1950

Zodiac: Cancer

Marital Status: He was first married to Manara Sikhri who was the step sister of Surekha Sikri. They had a child by the name of Heeba Shah. Soon after the death of Manara Sikhri, Naseeruddin married actress Ratna Pathak Shah in the year 1982. From this marriage Naseeruddin had 2 sons named Vivaan and Imaad.


1) In 1987, Naseeruddin was awarded the Padma Shree which is the fourth highest civilian award in India.

2) In the year 2003, he was awarded the Padma Bhushan which was the third highest civilian award in the country.

3) In 1979, he won the National Film Award in the Best Actor category for his role in Sai Paranjpye’s Bollywood feature film ‘Sparsh’.

4) Five years down the line in 1984 he again received a similar award for his performance in ‘Paar’ directed by Goutam Ghose.

5) He once again received the prestigious National Film Award in the Best Actor domain for the film ‘Iqbal’ in the year 2006.

6) In 1981, Naseeruddin was bestowed with the prestigious Filmfare Best Actor Award for his role in ‘Aakrosh’, directed by Govind Nihalani.

7) The following year in 1982 he once again was awarded with the Filmfare Best Actor Award for his performance in the Rabindra Dharmaraj directed ‘Chakra’.

8) Two years later he received this very award for the film ‘Masoom’ directed by Shekhar Kapur.

9) In 1984, he received The Volpi Cup Best Actor Award for the film ‘Paar’.

10) In 2000, Naseeruddin won the prestigious Sangeet Natak Akademi Award.

11) The very same year he also won the International Indian Film Academy Award – Artistic Excellence for Performance in a Negative Role for the film ‘Sarfarosh’, directed by John Matthew Matthan.

12) Naseeruddin had been given the honour of lifetime membership of the International Film and Television Club of Asian Academy of Film and Television.

13) Apart from the aforementioned awards Naseeruddin Shah had also received various nominations for various awards such as follows:
        i) In 1993 and 1996, he was nominated for the Filmfare Best Supporting Actor Award for his role in the films ‘Sir’ and ‘Naajayaz’ respectively, both of which were directed by Mahesh Bhatt.

        ii) He had also received the Filmfare Best Villain Award nomination in the years 1995, 1998, 2000, 2007 and 2008 for the films ‘Mohra’, ‘Chaahat’, ‘Sarfarosh’, ‘Krrish’ and ‘A Wednesday’ respectively.


1) In the year 1977, he along with Benjamin Gilani and Tom Alter established a theatre group by the name of Motley Productions. On the 29th of July, 1979 their very first play titled ‘Waiting for Godot’ written by Samuel Beckett, was staged at Prithvi theatre.

2) Eleven years later in 1988 Naseeruddin appeared on a television series which depicted the life of Mirza Ghalib. This television series was directed by Gulzar and it was aired on DD National channel.

3) In 1989 he signed up for another television series called ‘Bharat Ek Khoj’ which was based on ‘The Discovery of India’ written by Jawaharlal Nehru.

4) In 1999 he appeared on the Zee TV show ‘Tarkash’ where he donned the role of a special agent.

5) In 1998 Naseeruddin enacted the character role of Gandhi in the play titled ‘Mahatma vs Gandhi’.

6) He even contributed as a narrator in the very famous audio book series for children titled ‘Karadi Tales’.

Biography: Naseeruddin was born on the 20th of July in the year 1950 to a Muslim background in Barabanki situated in Uttar Pradesh, India. His father was from the Army. He pursued his education from the prestigious St. Anselm’s Ajmer and St. Joseph’s College in Nainital. In the year 1971, Naseeruddin graduated in the field of arts from the well-known Aligarh Muslim University after which he joined the National School of Drama situated in Delhi. Lt. General Zameerud-din Shah PVSM,SM,VSM has been recently appointed as the new Vice Chancellor of the prestigious Aligarh Muslim University. Salim Shah, his nephew is also into acting in films and on television.

Throughout his career Naseeruddin acted in various notable movies such as ‘Jaane Bhi Do Yaaro’, ‘Katha’, ‘Ardh Satya’, ‘Junoon’, ‘Mohan Joshi Hazir Ho!’, ‘Mirch Masala’, ‘Albert Pinto Ko Gussa Kyun Ata Hai’, ‘Mandi’, ‘Nishant’, ‘Trikal’, ‘Aaksrosh’ and numerous others. Early in his career he appeared in the Ismail Shroff directed ‘Dil Aakhir Dil Hai’ where he starred opposite actress Rakhi. Here Rakhi played the role of Naseeruddin’s elder girlfriend known as Kusumji and Naseeruddin was forced to tie the knot with Rakhi unwillingly because he was younger than her in this film.Soon enough he began to get more involved with Bollywood films ever since he starred in the 1980 flick ‘Hum Paanch’ directed by Bapu and starring Amrish Puri, Gulshan Grover, Raj Babbar, Shabana Azmi, Sanjeev Kumar and Mithun Chakraborty.‘Hum Paanch’ was followed by ‘Hero Hiralal’ (1988), ‘Jalwa’ (1988) and ‘Ijazaat’ (1987). His next major success was in the year 1996 when he starred in ‘Karma’ directed by Subhash Ghai and starring Poonam Dhillon, Nutan, Anupam Kher, Jackie Shroff, Dilip Kumar, Anil Kapoor and Sridevi. In the year 1988, he starred in the English film ‘The Perfect Murder’ where he played the role of Inspecter Ghote opposite Ratna Pathak, his wife.

Some of his other projects include ‘Vishwatma’ (1992), ‘Tridev’ (1989) and ‘Ghulami’ (1985). As an actor ‘Mohra’ was Naseeruddin’s 100th film. In ‘Mohra’ (1994) which was directed by Rajiv Rai, Naseeruddin played the negative role alongside Raveena Tandon, Sunil Shetty and Akshay Kumar. The very same year he made his entry into the Malayalam film industry with T. V. Chandran’s drama, ‘Ponthan Mada’. Here he shared the screen with eminent people like Mammootty, Maniyanpilla Raju, Laboni Sarkar and Janardhanan. This film was based on two short stories Sheema Thampuran and Ponthan Mada, both written by C. V. Sreeraman. Soon enough in the year 2000, Naseeruddin enacted the role of Mahatma Gandhi in Kamal Hassan’s ‘Hey Ram’ starring Vaali, Arvind Akash, Vasundhara Das, Girish Karnad, Abbas, Rani Mukherji, Atul Kulkarni, Shahrukh Khan, Hema Malini and Kamal Hassan. This film dealt with India’s partition as well as with the assassination of Mahatma Gandhi. Next up he appeared in the Nagesh Kukunoor directed ‘Iqbaal’ where he played the role of a coach to a mute and deaf kid. In the year 1999, he donned the role of Gulfam Hassan who was a ghazal singer as well as a terrorist mastermind, in the film ‘Sarfarosh’. He also gave a brilliant performance in the 2008 Neeraj Pandey directed ‘A Wednesday’. Some of the international signings which he had done are as follows- ‘Monsoon Wedding’ and ‘The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen’. In the latter he played the character of Captain Nemo. He had even signed up for ‘Maqbool’ which was based on Shakespeare’s Macbeth. In 2004 he starred opposite Priyanka Chopra and Arjun Rampal in ‘Asambhav’ directed by Rajiv Rai. The following year he appeared in Danny Leiner’s ‘The Great New Wonderful’ starring Olympia Dukakis, Jim Gaffigan, Tony Shalhoub and Maggie Gyllenhaal. One of his recent hits include the Vidya Balan starrer, ‘The Dirty Picture’ released in the year 2011.

His very first Pakistani film was ‘Khuda Ke Liye’ which was directed by Shoaib Mansoor. Here he did a very small role.

Naseeruddin’s contribution to the film industry is not just in terms of him being an actor, but also as a director he has directed several plays written by eminent people such as Saadat Hasan Manto, Ismat Chughtai and Lavendar Kumar. His very first film as a director was in the year 2006 when he directed ‘Yun Hota Toh Kya Hota’, starring Ankur Khanna, Ratna Pathak Shah, Boman Irani, Saroj Khan, Ayesha Takia, Jimmy Shergill, Irfan Khan and Konkona Sen Sharma.

Don't miss