Master Pillai, The bald singer in Padosan. Or, Wah Wah Productions! The sleazy director who wanted to cast Prem Bhopali for a film in Andaz Apna Apna. Remember the DODO?
Mehmood Ali taught us how a humorist could do great magic on the big screen. With his sorcery of amusement, the adventures of Mehmood Sahab were a laugh riot. Actor, the singer, director, and producer Mehmood was a very uncomplicated personality. Born on 29 September 1932 to Latifunnisa and Mumtaz Ali a huge star in the 40s and 50s, Mehmood Ali was one of the eight children. He’s married to Madhu, the younger sister of the legendary actress Meena Kumari. Lucky Ali, singer, and composer to many great songs in Bollywood, is his son.
He embarked on to his acting career through Kismet, a Bombay Talkies studio film as a child artist. Later in the year 1958, he acted as the brother of the hero Raj Kapoor in Parvarish. Padosan, an experience that Bollywood fans live up to this day was one of the many comedy movies that he acted and produced. Even though Mehmood rarely got a chance to play a lead in any of his films, the film creators would cast him for his impeccable persona. This led them to boost their popularity overnight and sell a massive amount of tickets. His appearance ensured a large amount of public to theatres. Such was the impact of providing a role to Mehmood: As they say “the name’s enough.”
Due to his friendly nature, he was dear to all in the Bollywood industry. His friendship catapulted many fabled personalities. To name a few, he cast Kishore Kumar in Padosan and kept his vow of casting him a role in a film that he’ll make. Legendary Music Director R.D. Burman is a gift to the world by Mehmood Sahab himself. Cchote Nawab was the film that led his entry to Bollywood was a movie made by Mehmood.
Mehmood Sahab had a big heart, was a great friend, a delightful personality and a performer with distinction. Indian film fraternity and everyone who knows him will invariably respect this entertainer.
Even when you are no more in this world, “Hum kale hain to kya hua? Dilwale hain” is fondly going to pass on to generations. Happy Birthday, Mehmood Sahab!