Tanuja – the charming actress of bollywood.
Tanuja, the sister of Nutan, daughter of Shobhna Samarth and mother of Kajol, had inherent acting talent. She impressed the viewers with her performance in the film Sapno ka Saudagar, opposite Raj Kapoor, where Hema Malini was the main actress. Raj Kapoor used to provide illusions about the betterment of life to everyone which included Tanuja, too. She had also done well in the film Baharen Phir bhi Ayegi opposite Dharmender.
In Jewel Thief, opposite Dev Anand, in 1967, she played the role of the daughter of the trader of jewellery, not knowing that her father had conspired with the jewel thief played by Ashok Kumar to trap Dev Anand in the false charge. She had given elegant lips in Asha Bhosle song, composed by SD Burman titled “raat nashili hai”. She was very enthusiastic by nature and that was evident in her role in Hathi Mera Sathi, opposite Rajesh Khanna, where the credit of the success of the film ultimately went to the elephant who was loyal to the family and did overt acts.
Tanuja had been very successful in the Bengali films that she did opposite Uttam Kumar including Antony Firingi and Deya Neya. In Antony Firingi, she played the role of the wife of a Christian who devoted his life for singing religious songs for Goddess Kali and Tanuja was a Hindu girl who married this person and specialising in the type of song. As the orthodox society could not accept the liberal attitude of Tanuja they burnt her house and she died at the end of the film. It was very successful film and Uttam Kumar even won the national award of best actor for his performance in that particular year.
Tanuja had acted in hit films one after the other including Mere Jeevan Saathi, opposite Rajesh Khanna, Anubhav opposite Sanjeev Kumar, Jeene ki raah, opposite Jeetender, etc. In Izzat, opposite Dharmender, she had an affair with a lower caste person, whose father was Balraj Sahani, a respectable person in society. The film showed that the society only creates barriers, where people from the upper caste sometimes also indulge in shameful activities. Tanuja gave adequate lips in the song “yeh dil tum bin lagta nahi” composed by Laxmikant Pyarella and sung by Lata and Rafi. She also acted in the role of a ghost in the film Ek Paheli, opposite Firoz Khan. She acted in a number of character roles over the years and showed her talent in those roles also. Her acting talents were inherited by Kajol who became successful actress of the 90s. Viewers expect Tanuja to continue acting in significant roles in the years to come.
By: Supriya Chatterji.