It’s time to jump into the flashback and remember the legend on his birth anniversary. We know him better as Mugambo ("Mogambo khush hua", from Mr. India).
Amrish Puri was one of the most trending actors of his time. It seemed as he ruled the era. The charm of his personality was so imposing that other actors started following his way of acting.
He will always be at peak in the list of “best villains.” Our entire childhood was flooded with Amrish Puri movies. His performance would leave us awe struck. His dominant voice echoing in the ears, the roles he played portraying a variety of antiheros. Also as he said,
"I am happy to play the bad man. As an actor, I have to justify the roles I get. Unfortunately, I get more bad [negative] roles than good [good guy] roles."
His powerful dialogue delivery has attained an iconic status in Indian cinema. Playing a ‘bad guy’ in almost every film and yet not monotonous. He was so innovative with his characters that each of them would leave a different impression on the spectators. He must have really mastered the skill of acting.
"Actors are like chefs. A good chef never gives out the secret of his recipe. Similarly, a good actor never doles out his tips for acting."
Competitive cinema would hardly bother him. He used to cling to his basic principles of discipline and punctuality.
The actor in his own words explained,
"I am a director's actor. I always follow their advice. That is the reason for my survival in the industry. I am like a brick. You can use a brick in a masjid [mosque], mandir [temple] or church. I fit in with any director. I don't think I am perfect. I keep trying new elements in acting."
He is the talk of the Bollywood news then and now!
Not only that, the man millions of Indians loved to hate was also one of the first Bollywood stars to cross over successfully into Hollywood.
He played Mola Ram, the wicked and frightening high priest with horns on his head and surrounded by skulls in Steven Spielberg's Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom, in 1984.
While real life, Amrish Puri was the a totally different man. He did not match any of the various villainous characters he played. He was gentle, liberal, thoughtful and supportive to his family and friends. He was beaten up every time by the protagonist of the movie in reel life. But in real life, Puri was a hero himself.
"They like me in my films. They know I have been appreciated for my roles all over. They feel good to hear good things about me," he said.