They say the perfect formula for an actor to become the junta’s hero is to fight the villains, romance the heroine, dance on chartbuster songs, deliver powerful dialogues and win everyone’s hearts in just 3 hours! Well, we don’t say that is impossible. All we say is that they need the confidence and support of a director who would trust them with a variety of roles, and not just once but in many movies!
Without a good director, neither would the actor get a good role, nor would he be able to leave an impact in the movie. But without a good actor, the director’s vision would just end up being a mere vision.
Let us have a look at some of these director-actor pairs who understand each other’s work and create magic every time they come together for a movie that still live on in our memories.
1. Tigmanshu Dhulia and Irrfan Khan:
Their association goes a long way back when Irrfan used to act in TV serials and Tigmanshu cast him in an episode of ‘Star Bestsellers’. Well, who knew this little-known pair would be giving us brilliant films like ‘Paan Singh Tomar’ and ‘Saheb Biwi Aur Gangster Returns’ years later!
2. Rohit Shetty and Ajay Devgn:
Rohit had been the assistant director for many of Ajay Devgn’s earlier movies! Perhaps this earlier bond was the reason Ajay agreed to do Rohit’s debut film ‘Zameen’. And despite the hijack-drama being a flop, Ajay became a part of Rohit’s second film ‘Golmaal: Fun Unlimited’; and the rest is history! The two have given us some of the funniest entertainers in recent times, be it ‘Singham’ or ‘Bol Bachchan’.
3. Ram Gopal Varma and Amitabh Bachchan:
Agreed, RGV has a mood of his own, and ends up making movies that are even touted as the worst movies of the year. But the man has his own style of story-telling and with a good script in hand, he has always managed to keep the audiences on the edge of their seats and give us great cinematic tales. And perhaps it is for this reason that Amitabh Bachchan trusts this director so much. The two have done many movies together; some have been huge hits like ‘Sarkar’ while some have ended up being huge disasters like ‘Ram Gopal Varma Ki AAG’.
4. R. Balki and Amitabh Bachchan:
R.Balki’s love for Big B is evident. Well, who doesn’t love the Shahenshah? And our love for him just keeps getting bigger every time he does a film with the director. If there is one director who has been giving good and praise-worthy roles to Big B in recent times, then it is none other than R.Balki. Who can forget the old-boy romantic charm with which Big B did ‘Cheeni Kum’ or the National Award Winning (and more than that, heart-winning performance) in ‘Paa’. Even though the director’s next stars Arjun Kapoor as the lead, we hear Big B would be seen in a cameo role.
5. Sooraj Barjatya and Salman Khan:
Had there not been Sooraj Barjatya, we wouldn’t have got the Salman Khan we all love. Be it ‘Maine Pyar Kiya’, ‘Hum Aapke Hain Koun…!’ or ‘Hum Saath Saath Hain’, Barjatya is responsible for making Salman Khan and his ‘Prem’ a household name. We cannot wait for another big family entertainer ‘Prem Ratan Dhan Paayo’, which would mark their collaboration after 15 years!
6. Aditya Chopra and Shah Rukh Khan:
Thank You Aditya Chopra. Had he not convinced SRK to play the lovable and iconic Raj in ‘Dilwale Dulhaniya Le Jayenge’, King Khan would have been just another actor in the industry who plays villainous roles after having a spate of not-so-successful movies during the struggling days of his career. Chopra introduced us to the romantic side of SRK in ‘DDLJ’, and then gave us a much-matured and strong Raj Aryan in ‘Mohabbatein’ before showing us the lovable and simple side of the actor in ‘Rab Ne Bana Di Jodi’. The two have created magic every time they have come together.
7. Priyadarshan and Akshay Kumar/Paresh Rawal:
Priyadarshan has a very loyal supporting cast. Nearly all his movies have the same star cast comprising of Rajpal Yadav, Asrani and Manoj Joshi. However, two major actors who have been a part of almost all Priyadarshan comedies are Akshay Kumar and Paresh Rawal. No one makes sensible comedies better than Priyadarshan!
8. Rajkumar Hirani and Sanjay Dutt:
Rajkumar Hirani loves Sanjay Dutt; no wonder he makes sure the actor becomes a part of all his movies (except ‘3 Idiots’). He gave us the adorable and tapori Munnabhai and then, showed us how loyal and supportive friends can be with Dutt’s cameo in ‘PK’. More than Hirani’s much-ambitious tribute to his favorite friend and actor through a biopic, we are curiously waiting for them to re-create their magic in Munnabhai’s third installment!
9. Yash Chopra and Shah Rukh Khan:
Much before son Aditya Chopra introduced us to the romantic version of SRK, the Late Yash Chopra ensured that the actor traumatizes every girl in the country by playing the obsessive lover in ‘Darr’. This role established SRK as the numero-uno actor who can win hearts and sympathy at the same time while playing a negative role. But with ‘DDLJ’ SRK became a romantic actor and the legendary director gave him movies like ‘Dil Toh Pagal Hai’ where he proved his mettle once again. While the beautiful love saga ‘Veer-Zaara’ ended up becoming a timeless classic, Chopra’s last film ‘Jab Tak Hai Jaan’ again proved that the director trusts only one actor- Shah Rukh Khan.
10. Mani Ratnam and Abhishek Bachchan:
Had it not been Mani Ratnam’s confidence in Jr.Bachchan, the actor would have only come across as the star-kid who delivers flops. Ratnam changed Abhishek’s career graph with ‘Yuva’ and then gave him his career’s best film- ‘Guru’, where Abhishek proved why he needs to be taken seriously as an actor! With ‘Raavan’, Abhishek again entered the dark-role territory and won hearts.
11. Karan Johar and Shah Rukh Khan:
Perhaps the best thing about this duo is that much is written about their relationship every now then, but always come across as strong and unbreakable ‘Just Friends’. While the audience loved the cool SRK in ‘Kuch Kuch Hota Hai’ and the matured family man in the family drama ‘Kabhi Khushi Kabhie Gham’, Karan made sure everyone gets to see the serious-actor side of King Khan with ‘My Name Is Khan’.
12. David Dhawan and Govinda:
It would be unfair if we do not include this 90’s iconic Jodi who have given us the best all-time-favorite comedy-dramas. The two have worked together in 18 movies! Yes, you read it right. Dhawan was so well-versed with Govinda’s style that every film used to look like a tailor-made one for the actor. No matter how many times we watch ‘Aankhen’ or ‘Hero No.1’, we still laugh! However, given the current rapport these two share, we wonder if we would ever get to see the two of them doing a movie again.
13. Mohit Suri and Emraan Hashmi:
Mohit and Emraan have 7 films together. While some were hits, the rest were flops. However, what we love about this Jodi is that the two have always done films with different genres. While Mohit experiments as a director by doing different genres, he makes Emraan experiment with his type of roles ranging from a gangster to a romantic man. ‘Aawarapan’ and ‘Murder 2’ are considered as the best flicks out of all their collaborations so far.
14. Vishal Bhardwaj and Shahid Kapoor
Vishal Bhardwaj is responsible for changing Shahid’s career graph time and again. The first time when Shahid’s graph went down, the two did ‘Kaminey’ which was considered as the actor’s best performance. Then again, after a series of flops, the two did the critically acclaimed and Shahid once again emerged as the dark horse and went home with several awards this year. Soon, the two would start shooting for another film together along with Saif Ali Khan.
15. Rohan Sippy and Abhishek Bachchan:
Rohan Sippy’s films along with ABhishek Bachchan have not been stories of great box-office success. But truly, here is one director who has done different movies everytime and managed to change the actor’s image with each film. While ‘Kuch Na Kaho’ was average and made people think that Abhishek has some talent in him, ‘Bluffmaster!’ changed the game and was one of the most creative and quirky films of the year; and with ‘Dum Maro Dum’, Jr.Bachchan gave tough competition to his father’s Angry Young Man image and became the show stealer!
With new directors and debut actors coming in every now and then, it would be interesting to see which new pair ends up becoming the ‘David Dhawan-Govinda’ or ‘Karan Johar-Shah Rukh Khan’ for this new generation.