Bollywood actor Amitabh Bachchan has been selected as the recipient of the Dadasaheb Phalke Award, the country’s highest award in cinema given by the Central Government. Named after Dhundiraj Govind Phalke, popularly known as Dadasaheb Phalke, the Marathi producer-director who made India’s first full-length feature film Raja Harishchandra, the award is conferred on eminent personalities from Indian cinema for their “outstanding contribution to the growth and development of Indian cinema”.
Announcing Bachchan’s name for the award, Union Minister of Information and Broadcasting Prakash Javadekar wrote on Twitter on Tuesday evening: “The legend Amitabh Bachchan who entertained and inspired for 2 generations has been selected unanimously for #DadaSahabPhalke award. The entire country and international community is happy. My heartiest Congratulations to him.”
In 1969, when the award was constituted, it was won by Devika Rani, actress and founder of India’s first film company Bombay Talkies. In 50 years, only six women have won the prestigious award. Bachchan joins the league of Bollywood actors such as Vinod Khanna, who was conferred the award posthumously in 2018, Manoj Kumar, Shashi Kapoor, Pran, Dilip Kumar and Raj Kumar.
Bachchan, 76, completes 50 years in cinema this year. He made his first screen appearance as one of the seven protagonists in Saat Hindustani, directed by Khwaja Ahmad Abbas in 1969, and rose to the status of one of the biggest superstars in Indian cinema through films such as Zanjeer (1973) and Deewar (1975). He is a winner of all three Padma awards given by the Central Government. He has won the National Film Award for Best Actor four times, for Agneepath (1990), Black (2005), Paa (2009) and Piku (2015), and has won several other Indian and international awards. In recent years, he has starred in critical and commercial successes such as Pink and Badla.
Reacting to the news, Bachchan tweeted, “There is a paucity of words searching a response .. for the generosity of words that pour in .. I am but deeply grateful and most humbled .. my sincerest gratitude ..”
T 3298 – There is a paucity of words searching a response .. for the generosity of words that pour in ..
I am but deeply grateful and most humbled .. my sincerest gratitude ..
कृतज्ञ हूँ मैं , परिपूर्ण , आभार और धन्यवाद … मैं केवल एक विनयपूर्ण , विनम्र अमिताभ बच्चन हूँ pic.twitter.com/ESfV7ms6fZ
— Amitabh Bachchan (@SrBachchan) September 24, 2019