Sadashiv Amrapurkar was a veteran Indian actor best known for playing villainous and comic roles, enthralling the audience with his unique style in a career that spanned over three decades. His most iconic role is of ‘Maharani,’ a ruthless eunuch in the Bollywood film ‘Sadak’ (1991). He even received a Filmfare for his performance in Sadak.
Sadashiv was born on Thursday, 11 May 1950 (age 64 years; at the time of death) in Ahmednagar, Maharashtra. He did his schooling at A.E.S. Navin Marathi Shala, Ahmednagar and then went on to pursue a B.A. at Ahmednagar College. Sadashiv then did M.A. in History and M.A. in Sociology at Savitribai Phule Pune University.
Height (approx.): 5′ 7″
Hair Colour: Black
Eye Colour: Black
Family & Caste
Sadashiv Amrapurkar was born in a Maharashtrian Brahmin family.
Parents & Siblings
Sadashiv’s father was a businessman. He had a younger brother. Not much information is available about his parents and siblings.
Relationships, Wife & Children
Sadashiv married his high school sweetheart Sunanda Karmarkar on 12 June 1973. He is survived by three daughters, Ketaki Amarapurkar Jategaonkar, Rima Amarapurkar (a film director), and Dr Sayali Jahagirdar.
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Sadashiv always had a flair for acting, and he was very active on stage during his school and college days. At the age of 21, he started doing theatre. He acted and directed more than 50 plays. Sadashiv first started working in Marathi films with his debut movie Aamras (1976). Sadashiv was spotted by producer Govind Nihalani during a Marathi play titled ‘Hands Up’ in 1981 who gave him a chance in his movie ‘Ardh Satya’ to play the role of ‘Rama Shetty’ (the negative lead). The movie was a huge success, and Sadashiv even earned himself a Filmfare for his performance.
The 1987 Bollywood film ‘Hukumat’ established Sadashiv as a villain in Hindi cinema. The movie did more business at the box office than Mr India, which was released in the same year. Sadashiv’s role of ‘Maharani’ in the 1992 Bollywood film Sadak is considered one of his best performances. Sadashiv earned a Filmfare for his performance as the negative lead, and it was the first year that a Filmfare was given in this category.
Sadashiv’s TV debut was in Shyam Benegal’s epic TV series ‘Bharat Ek Khoj.’ He played the role of social reformer ‘Mahatama Jyotirao Phule.’
He shifted his focus to comic roles around the mid-90s with movies like ‘Ishq (1997),’ ‘Hum Saath Saath Hain (1999),’ ‘Coolie No 1 (1995),’ ‘Aunty No 1 (1998),’ and many more.
After a significant gap of his appearance in Bollywood films, Sadashiv appeared for the last time in Dibakar Banerjee’s film ‘Bombay Talkies’ in 2012. In an interview, when asked about his break from Bollywood, he said,
“Why should I? I’ve never said that I’m retired or don’t want to do films anymore. Just that the roles that come to me are often repetitive in nature and I’m brave enough to refuse them. Earlier, when I started my career at the age of 32, I wanted to do films to get recognized. Once I established myself as an actor, it was about making money for family. But now things are different. As you grow older, your priorities change.”
- 1984 (Winner): Best Supporting Actor for Ardh Satya (1983)
- 1992 (Winner): Best Performance by an Actor in a Negative Role for Sadak (1991)
- 1998 (Nominee): Best Performance by an Actor in a Negative Role for Ishq (1997)
Sadashiv was assaulted by a group of people in his neighbouring society after he objected to the wastage of water in a rain dance during Holi in 2013.
Sadashiv passed away on Monday, 3 November 2014 at the age of 64. He died of Pulmonary Fibrosis (a lung infection) at Kokilaben Dhirubhai Ambani Hospital in Mumbai. His last rites were performed in his hometown, Ahmednagar. His death was condoled by many influential people including Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
We will remember Sadashiv Amrapurkar as a versatile actor, popular across generations. RIP. My deepest condolences to his family.
— Narendra Modi (@narendramodi) November 3, 2014
- Sadashiv’s real name was Ganesh Kumar Narwode, which he changed at the age of 24. He was nicknamed Tatya by his friends and family members.
- He loved photography and enjoyed spending his leisure time reading and sketching with pastels.
- During his youth, Sadashiv was trained as a singer and wanted to pursue it as a career, but he quit singing due to his highly nasal baritone.
- He was also a good athlete, and he played first-class cricket in the Ranji Trophy. He was known for his commendable batting skills.
- The actor once shared a story as to why he signed the movie ‘Elaan-E-Jung.’ He said that his character was supposed to ride a horse in the film, and the actor always wanted to ride a horse. However, he fell from the horse on the first day of the shoot, and thus, he drove a jeep in the entire film.
- Sadashiv had an undying love for theatre. When he was asked to choose between films and theatre, he said that theatre was his breath.
- Sadashiv was known for his social and philanthropic work. He worked towards the betterment of less fortunate people from a very young age. He also contributed to many social organizations like Samajik Krutadnyata Nidhi, Andhashraddha Nirmulan Samiti, Snehalaya, Lokshahi Prabodhan Vyaspeeth, Ahmednagar Aitihasik Vastu Sangrahalaya, and many others.
- Think Global Foundation in Ahmednagar has created an award titled ‘Late Sadashiv Amarapurkar Award’ in his memory.