Amrish Puri (22 June 1932 – 12 January 2005) was an Indian actor, who was one of the most notable and important figures in Indian cinema and Theatre. He acted in more than 450 films, established himself as one of the most popular actors in Indian Cinema. Puri is remembered for playing various roles in variety of film genres, specially iconic villainous roles in Hindi Cinema, as well as International Cinema. He reigned supreme in villainous roles in the 1980s and 1990s, his dominating screen presence and distinctive deep voice made him stand out amongst the other villains of the day. Puri was active in both, art cinema such as in some of Shyam Benegal and Govind Nihalani's films and mainly in mainstream cinema. Puri won three Filmfare Awards for Best Supporting Actor in eight nominations. He also holds most Filmfare Award for Best Villain nominations. While he predominantly worked in Hindi-language films, he had also appeared in Punjabi, Telugu, Kannada, Tamil, Malayalam and Marathi language films. Puri played some of most remembered villainous roles in Vidhaata (1982), Shakti (1982), Hero (1983), Meri Jung (1985), Nagina (1986), Mr. India (1987), Shahenshah (1988), Ram Lakhan (1989), Tridev (1990), Ghayal (1990), Saudagar (1991), Thalapathi (1991), Tahalka (1992), Damini (1993), Karan Arjun (1995), Jeet (1996), Koyla (1997), Baadshah (1999 film), Gadar: Ek Prem Katha (2001), and Nayak: The Real Hero (2001). Puri's performance of the main antagonist Mogambo from Shekhar Kapur's Mr. India (1987) is considered as one of greatest villains of all time in Indian Cinema. It was reported that he received a salary of ₹10 million (US$771,890.82), making him the highest-paid Indian villain actor of all time. His comic role in Chachi 420, that he acted alongside Kamal Haasan was well received by critics. Puri was a highly prolific actor; he also featured in positive supporting roles, of which he won 3 times Filmfare Awards for Best Supporting Actor. Some of his notable positive roles are Phool Aur Kaante (1991), Gardish (1993), Dilwale Dulhaniya Le Jayenge (1995), Ghatak (1996), Diljale (1996) Pardes (1997), Virasat (1997), China Gate (1998), Badal (2000), Mujhe Kucch Kehna Hai (2001), Mujhse Shaadi Karogi (2004) and Hulchul (2004). To Western audiences, he is best known as Mola Ram in Steven Spielberg's Hollywood film Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom (1984) and as Khan in Richard Attenborough's Gandhi (1982). His grandson, Vardhan Puri is also an actor in Indian Cinema, having written and starred in a film produced by a production house named after Puri, Amrish Puri Films.
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