Veteran actor Shammi Kapoor, who became a heartthrob among the masses in the 50s and 60s, was felicitated by 10th Osian’s-Cinefan Festival of Asian and Arab Cinema. Legendary filmmakers of his era Shakti Samanta, who made hits like ‘Kashmir Ki Kali’ and ‘An Evening in Paris’ with him and Lekh Tandon, who directed him in ‘Professor’, gave him the award. Sammir Dattani, Veteran actress Kamini Kaushal, Shakti Samanta, Lekh Tandon, Satish Shah with wife, Kamal Siddhu, Aditya Raj Kapoor with wife and mother Neilu, Raj Zutshi, Chetan Bhagat and many others arrived for the event.
Bollywood superstar Aamir Khan is so impressed by yesteryear’s star Shammi Kapoor and his distinct dance moves that he says Elvis Presley is America’s answer to the sixties actor. ‘Shammiji is said to be India’s answer to Elvis Presley, but I say that Elvis Presley is America’s answer to Shammi Kapoor,’ said Aamir Saturday at a felicitating ceremony of the veteran actor for his outstanding contribution to the Indian cinema.
Mesmerised by the dancing and performing skills of the legendary actor, Aamir said: ‘The mark of a good actor is the belief with which he gives a shot and Shammiji gave his each shot with a strong belief and that makes him a great actor of all times.’ Lauding the humbleness and simplicity of the legendary actor, Aamir added: ‘In spite of being such a big star, he was not aware of his celebrity status that even I fail to do sometimes.’
Shammi Kapoor, who received a standing ovation after getting the honour, said: ‘I am overwhelmed by the honour and reception that all of you have given me here.’ About his relations with Aamir, Shammi Kapoor said: ‘I have seen him growing as his family and ours were family friends. His uncle Nasir Hussain made his debut as a director with ‘Dil Deke Dekho’ (Shammi played the male lead in it) and later we worked together in many hits.’
Referring to a photograph exhibition on his life and work, the ‘Yahoo’ star said: ‘I am delighted to see the rare photographs of mine which even I don’t have. My photographs with Madhubala, Shyama and other actress have brought back the memories of the past.’ Shammi Kapoor also said he owes his success to many people in the industry including directors Samanta, Tandon and Hussain and music composers like Shankar Jaikishan, O.P. Nayyer, R.D. Burman and Roshan.
The actor concluded his speech saying: ‘Without Mohammed Rafi, Shammi Kapoor is incomplete.’ Rafi sang hits like ‘Jawaaniyan yeh mast mast’, ‘Yun to humne lakh hansee dekhe hain, tumsa nahin dekha’, ‘Taareef karoon kya uski jisne tumhe banaya’ and ‘Hai duniya usi ki, zamana usi ka’ for the actor.