Remembering Syed Kamal

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October 1 marked the 9th death anniversary of showman Syed Kamal. Known as Pakistan’s Raj Kapoor, Kamal acted in over 80 films, produced over a dozen and directed nine of them. He was destined for stardom, but had to find it the hard way.

It was the mid 50s when Pakistan Industry was getting on its feet. Santosh Kumar, Darpan and Sudhir had established themselves as heroes, but they needed a sidekick to tickle the audience during the film. There was a need for a young ‘actor’ who could dance with friends, crack jokes at times, throw a few punches when required and woo the girl, when at peace.

Santosh Kumar had the charm and charisma, but dance was never his forte. Sudhir knew how to fight and act but lacked in dance. Darpan was attractive, but fell behind in all the other departments. It was the year 1956, when two youngsters migrated from India to make a name in Pakistan. One was Ratan Kumar and the other was Syed Kamal. One was bound to make it big.