Karishma and Arjun Struggled to Carve a Place for themselves in Bollywood

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Karishma Kapoor, a girl-child of the renowned Prithvi Kapoor family broke the family traditions, where women of the family do not act. She had drop school and become an actress to support her single mother and younger sister. Her mother, Babita, an actress, had divorced her husband. Arjun Kapoor, too had an unhappy childhood, following the divorce of his parents. He too struggled hard and carved a place for himself in Bollywood. Smriti profiles the two Kapoors, in the weekly column, exclusively in Different Truths.

Karishma Broke the Shackles of Family Traditions to Support her Single Mother

Karishma Kapoor is the recipient of the National Film Award and four Filmfare Awards. She belongs to the blue-blooded family of the Hindi film industry, the Kapoors, descendants of Prithviraj Kapoor, an iconic actor of his times, one of the pioneers in Hindi cinema and theatre. Though Karishma’s success is the result of her own hard work and perseverance, as her family was against women of the family working in films, and hence, did not extend any support to Karishma, who defied family tradition and started working in movies to financially support her mother and sister.

Karishma was born on 25th June 1974 to Randhir and Babita Kapoor. Her parents separated when she was very young and her mother brought up Karishma and her sister Kareena, as a single mother. Karishma started her career at the tender age of seventeen. She gave up her studies and chose to work, as her mother, who was separated from her father, needed financial support.

Karishma debuted in Bollywood, in Prem Qaidi (1991) with another debutante, Harish. The film was a moderate success and Karishma got a mixed response, she was criticised for her looks and performance. The next few years of her career were a potpourri of hits and flops. After giving a series of flops, she had a few hits like Jigar andAnari. Her hits and flops continued, till her teaming up with Govinda and David Dhawan, which started with Raja Babu and the trio gave many hits together. Besides Govinda, Karishma acted with other stars such as Salman Khan, Ajay Devgan, Suneil Shetty and had commercially successful films with them too. Jeet, a film by Raj Kanwar, starring Karishma, Sunny Deol, Salman Khan and Tabu, was a major hit and Karishma was highly praised for her performance.

Karishma’s acting journey portrays her hard work and dedication for her career. She played the typical Bollywood heroine, who was always supposed to look sensuous and glamorous, and her major contribution in the film was to dance and sing with the hero, but, Karishma added a depth to these typical characters by giving a strength to them and adding shades of an independent Indian woman to them, her performances in typical masala movies such as, Raja Babu, Coolie No.1, Hero No.1, and Biwi No.1 are perfect examples of her improvisation.


Karishma very cleverly prevented herself from being typecast as a traditional Hindi masala movie heroine by doing movies which won her critical acclaim with commercial success. Dharmesh Darshan’s Raja Hindustani was a major turning point in her career. The movie brought a major transformation in her looks, she wooed everyone with her new avatar in the film, and her performance was appreciated by the classes as well as the masses. The film also starring Amir Khan, was one of the most successful films of Hindi cinema and won Karishma her first Filmfare Award for the Best Actress.

Her performance in Yash Chopra’s Dil Toh Pagal Hai, won her the National Film Award and Filmfare Award for Best Supporting Actress. Karishma was approached for the role after, many top heroines of the time refused to accept it, as it was a supporting role and the main lead was being played by Madhuri Dixit. Karishma did not hesitate to say yes to the film and made her presence felt in the film by her elegant dancing, modern looks, and a very natural performance. Kapoor remarked, “I looked at the role not from a star’s point of view but from that of an actress. And I discovered that despite its length there was a lot of scope for me as a performer”. Some other memorable performances of Karishma were in films like Fiza, Zubeida, and Shakti. These films were women-centric and Karishma won critical accolades for her performances. She herself described her journey through these films by stating, “I have been here so long, I have done everything. Lead roles, supporting roles, everything. How do I grow as a performer? If I keep doing commercial cinema, I will stagnate and I wanted to grow.” She very intelligently chose her films and maintained a beautiful balance between purely commercial and meaningful cinema.

Unfortunately, this beautiful talented heroine, who successfully became one of the top heroines of Bollywood, had to go through many difficult phases in her personal life. She was allegedly in a relationship with Ajay Devgan but it ended abruptly. Her engagement to Abhishek Bachchan and then the calling off of it is still shrouded in mystery. After these heart-breaking incidents, she married industrialist Sanjay Kapoor, on 29th November 2003. Her wedding ceremony was like a fairy tale, but alas the ending was not like one. The marriage ended in a divorce despite two children out of it.  Initially, both the parties filed for divorce by mutual consent, but, later it turned ugly and dirty over the custody of their children. Finally, they reached an agreement and divorce was granted to them.

At present, Karishma is busy with endorsements of many products and bringing up her two children. On the occasion of her birthday, Different Truths wishes her more happiness and contentment in her future life.

Arjun Kapoor Carved a Place for himself in Bollywood

He was an obese teenager, weighing around 140kg, asthmatic at the age of 22, but today he is one of the promising actors of the present generation of Hindi cinema. He has a huge fan following, the heartthrob of women of all age groups, which increased manifold, after his role of a sit at home husband in Ki & Ka. Meet Arjun Kapoor, son of noted film producer, Boney Kapoor, and nephew of the eternally young, evergreen actor Anil Kapoor.

Arjun has emerged as a winner in his struggle with obesity, broken marriage of his parents and carved a place for himself in the highly competitive world of Bollywood. Arjun was born on 26th June 1985 in Mumbai to Boney Kapoor and his entrepreneur wife Mona Kapoor. He has a sister Anshula Kapoor and was just ten years old when his parents got divorced. His father married actress Sridevi and has two daughters from her. Arjun very candidly commented on his father’s second marriage, he said, “When we were kids, it was difficult. But what can you do? How long will you complain? You have to accept what is, take it on your chin, and move on.”


Arjun, a school dropout started his career in the film industry as an assistant director. He assisted Nikhil Adwani for Kal Ho Na Ho and Salame Ishq and worked as an assistant producer on two of his father’s production, No Entry and Wanted. He then signed a three-film contract with Yashraj films and made his debut in the 2012 movie, Ishaqzaade, opposite Parineeti Chopra. Arjun’s debut film was a major success commercially and Arjun was critically acclaimed for his performance.  Taran Adarsh of the entertainment portal Bollywood Hungama wrote of his performance: “Arjun Kapoor makes a fantastic debut. He has a peerless body language and an ‘I-don’t-give-a-damn’ kind of an approach in the movie. He comes across as fiery and rustic and at the same time self-assured and assertive in this reckless and intrepid character”.

After performing in crime films, which included the superhit Gunday, Arjun did a film of a completely different genre, 2 States, a romantic comedy, with Alia Bhatt as his co-star. The film was a major commercial success and the chemistry between the two stars was considered to be a major factor behind its success. Critic Sarita Tanwar of Daily News and Analysis reviewed, “Arjun, who doubles as a narrator impresses with a role totally unlike anything he has done before.”

Arjun’s further releases showcased his versatility and his capability to experiment with his roles and characters. Be it Finding Fanny with Deepika Padukone, Naseeruddin Shah, and Pankaj Kapoor, or Ki & Ka with Kareena Kapoor, Arjun impressed all with his performances. His recent release, Half Girlfriend too has been very well received by the audiences.

Arjun, in a very short span of time, has shown his spark and is seen as the future superstar of Bollywood. Besides films, he hosted television shows and endorses many products basically targeted at the young consumer. Speculations about his affairs keep him in the limelight, especially his alleged affair with Malaika Arora kept the media on its toes, though Arjun refused to comment on this.

Different Truths wishes him a very happy 32nd birthday and more success and fame and recognition in life.

©Smriti Maheshwari

Photos from the internet.

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Smriti Maheshwari loves cooking, reading, mostly fiction and thrillers. She enjoys mythological stories too. She also loves meeting people and making friends, socialising, and is a big movie buff. A homemaker and a dreamer, she stays in Allahabad with her husband.