Hyderabad, Andhra Pradesh, India
Claim to Fame
The World of Apu (1959)
Profile Bio Text
Sharmila Tagore (Bengali: Romanization of Bengali; 8 December 1946) is a Indian film actress from Bengal. She has won several National Film Awards and Filmfare Awards for her performances.
She has led the Indian Film Censor Board. In December 2005 she was chosen as an UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador.
Sharmila Tagore was born in a Hindu Bengali family in Hyderabad, Andhra Pradesh, India to Gitindranath Tagore who was then Dy. General Manager of the British India Company owner of Elgin Mills.
Tagore began her career as an actress in the 1959 Satyajit Ray film Apur Sansar (The World of Apu), as the ill-fated bride of the title character. As noted on the official website for Ray, "She was just a fourteen-year-old then, with no previous acting experience. As the shooting began, Ray had to shout instructions to Sharmila during the takes. None of this, however, is reflected on the screen. Ray cast her in his next film Devi too." She appeared in a number of Ray films, often co-starring with Soumitra Chatterjee.
She established herself as a popular Hindi film actress with Shakti Samanta`s Kashmir Ki Kali in 1964. Samanta again cast her in many more hit films, notably An Evening in Paris (1967), the first appearance on a two-piece bikini of an Indian actress, (Sadhana had appeared in one-piece bikini in earlier films) which not only shocked conservative Indian audiences but also set off a wave of bikini-clad actresses carried forward by Parveen Babi (in Yeh Nazdeekiyan, 1982), Zeenat Aman (in Heera Panna 1973; Qurbani, 1980) and Dimple Kapadia (in Bobby, 1973), but established Tagore`s role as somewhat of a sex symbol in Bollywood. Wearing a bikini put her name in the Indian press as one of Bollywood`s ten hottest actresses of all time, and was a transgression of female identity through a reversal of the state of modesty, which functions as a signifier of femininity in Bombay films. But, when Tagore was the chairperson of the Central Board of Film Certification, she expressed concerns about the rise of the bikini in Indian films.
Samanta later teamed up Tagore with Rajesh Khanna for movies such as Aradhana (1969) and Amar Prem (1972), where played the role of Pushpa, the courtesan in city of Kolkata, again opposite Rajesh Khanna, who himself gave his often quoted dialogue in the film, "Pushpa I hate tears..". Other directors paired them together in Daag (1973), Maalik (1972) and Safar (1970). She starred in Gulzar`s 1975 film, Mausam, and she played a supporting role as heroine Sarita Choudhury`s mother in Mira Nair`s 1991 film Mississippi Masala.
Her latest release is a Marathi film Samaantar by Amol Palekar. Her earlier releases were Vidhu Vinod Chopra`s film, Eklavya: The Royal Guard, brings together real life mother and son, Sharmila Tagore and Saif Ali Khan. They share screen space for the first time since Aashiq Awara (1993).
Tagore converted to Islam and married Mansoor Ali Khan Pataudi, Nawab of Pataudi in a Nikah ceremony held on 27 December 1969. She took on the name Ayesha Sultan after her marriage. They have three children: Saif Ali Khan (b. 1970), Saba Ali Khan and Soha Ali Khan (b. 1978).
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Sharmila Tagore (also known as Begum Ayesha Sultana) (born 8 December 1944) is an Indian film actress known for her works predominantly in Hindi cinema. She has received two National Film Awards and two Filmfare Awards for her performances.
1959–present, 1959–1984, 1991–2010
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