Johnny Walker (actor)

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Johnny Walker
Johnny Walker (Indian Actor).jpg
Born
Badruddin Jamaluddin Kazi

(1926-11-11)11 November 1926
Died29 July 2003(2003-07-29) (aged 76)
OccupationActor
Years active1951–1997
Spouse(s)
Noorjahan (m. 1955)
RelativesTony Walker (born, Kamaaluddin Kazi) (brother)

Badruddin Jamaluddin Kazi (11 November 1926 – 29 July 2003), better known by his stage name Johnny Walker, was an Indian actor who acted in around 300 films. He was born in Indore, British India, the son of a mill worker. His father was made redundant and the family moved to Bombay (now Mumbai). Kazi took various jobs as the sole breadwinner for the family, eventually becoming a bus conductor with Brihanmumbai Electric Supply and Transport (BEST).

Early life[edit]

Johnny Walker was born in 1926 to a mill-worker in Mehtgov,Sendhwa,District Barwani Indore. Born to a Muslim family, he was named Badruddin Jamaluddin Kazi at birth. The mill in which his father worked closed and the family, of which Kazi was the second of ten children, moved to Maharashtra. There Kazi tried his hand at several jobs, and eventually secured a post as a bus conductor in the B.E.S.T (Bombay Electric Supply and Transport) bus service. He became the sole breadwinner, travelling many miles and at unsocial hours at various times in order to buy and then sell ice candy, fruit, vegetables, stationery and other goods. Throughout his youth he dreamed of being involved in films, idolising Noor Mohammed Charlie and practicing stunts that he saw on-screen.[1]

Career[edit]

He nurtured his desire to work in films and entertained passengers while working the buses with amusing routines, hoping that he would at some point be spotted by someone with connection to the movie industry. His wish came true, although the details are unclear. Balraj Sahni saw him, perhaps on a bus or perhaps while Kazi was amusing the cast of Hulchul, a film for which he had obtained a bit part, with an extemporized routine as a drunk. Sahni, who sources say was either at that time writing the script for Baazi (1951) or acting in Hulchul, told Kazi to demonstrate his drunkard act to Guru Dutt. From that meeting he gained a role in Baazi. It was Dutt who gave him the name of Johnny Walker, a reference to the brand of Scotch whisky, when he was inspired by Kazi's display in the role of a drunkard.[1][2][3]

Thereafter, Walker appeared in all but one of Dutt's movies and the director encouraged him to ad lib and to draw on his varied life experiences.[1] He was primarily an actor of comedic roles but towards the end of his life became disenchanted, saying, "Earlier, comedians had a respectable position and an almost parallel role with the protagonist, now it is just to bring a touch of humour. I don't buy that." His attempts to portray heroic personae in the eponymous Johnny Walker and Mr. Qartoon were not successful but films such as Mere Mehboob, C.I.D., Pyaasa and Chori Chori made him a star. His heyday was in the 1950s and 1960s and his later career was affected by the death of Dutt, who had greatly influenced it, in 1964. He worked with directors such as Bimal Roy and Vijay Anand but his career faded in the 1980s.[2][3] He was unwilling to adopt the cruder form of comedy and changed priorities that had become the vogue, saying that

"In those days we used to do clean comedy. We were aware that the person who had come to the cinema had come with his wife and children ... the story was the most important thing. Only after selecting a story would Abrar Alvi and Guru Dutt find suitable actors! Now it's all upside down ... they line up a big hero and find a story to fit in. The comedian has ceased to be a character, he's become something to fit in between scenes. ... I opted out because comedy had become hostage to vulgarity. I acted in 300 films and the Censor Board never cut even one line."[1]

Walker was particularly satisfied with his work in B. R. Chopra's Naya Daur (1957), Chetan Anand's Taxi Driver (1954) and Bimal Roy's Madhumati (1958).[1] His final film came after an absence of 14 years when he took a role in a remake of Mrs. Doubtfire titled Chachi 420 (1997).[2][3] During the intervening period, he had a successful business dealing with precious and semi-precious stones.[1]

Songs were written especially for him. His drawing power at the box office was such that distributors would insist on him having a song and would pay extra to ensure it. He is the only actor to have a film in his name Johnny Walker. He was the first actor to keep a secretary / manager. He was the first actor to stop working on Sundays. He was the first actor to bring Colloquialism to cinema Taxi Driver. Mohd Rafi has sung most songs for Johnny Walker than any other actor. He also produced and directed the 1985 film Pahunche Huwey Log.[1][2]

Family life[edit]

Johnny Walker married Noor (short for Noorjahan), a sister of Shakila, despite the opposition of her family.[3] They had three daughters and three sons, of whom one is actor Nasirr Khan.[3] Regretting that he had been forced to leave school at 6th standard, he sent his sons to the US for schooling. [1] Despite often playing the roles of a drunk, Walker was a teetotaller.[1]

Awards[edit]

Filmography[edit]

Walker acted in around 300 films,[2] including:

1950-1959[edit]

Year Title Role Notes
1950's
1951 Baazi Debut
1952 Jaal
Aandhiyan Mastram
1953 Baaz The Court Astrologer
Aag Ka Dariya
Humsafar
Thokar
1954 Lal Pari
Barati
Shaheed-e-Azam Bhagat Singh
Munna
Aar Paar Rustam
Taxi Driver Mastana
1955 Bahu
Chhora Chhori
Marine Drive
Char Paise
Albeli
Devdas
Jashan
Jawab
Joru ka Bhai
Mr. & Mrs. '55 Johny
Milap Kalu
Mast Qalandar
Miss Coca Cola
Musafirkhana
Shahi Mehmaan
Railway Platform Naseeb Chand
Shahzada
Society
1956 Awara Shehzadi
Bharti
Anjaan
C.I.D. Master
Chhoo Mantar Baijunath'Baiju'
Chori Chori Shayar
Chanrakanta
Ghulam Begum Badshah
Insaaf Justice
Naya Andaz
Shrimati 420
Somewhere in Delhi
26 January
Samundari Daku
Rajdhani
1957 Changez Khan
Do Roti Anokhelal
Johnny Walker
Pyaasa Abdul Sattar
Mr. X
Naya Daur Journalist
Duniya Rang Rangili
Mai Baap Parker
Gateway of India
Ek Saal J. B. Pinto
Qaidi
1958 Sitaron Se Aage
Naya Paisa
Mujrim
Mr. Cartoon M.A.
Madhumati Charandas
Light House
Kala Pani
Zindagi ya Toofan
Khota Paisa
Ghar Sansar Banke
Do Mastane
Chandan
Detective
Aji Bas Shukriya
Aakhri Dao
Amar Deep Ustad
12 O'Clock Motilal Sharma 'Moti'
1959 Bhai Bahen
Pehli Raat
Satta Bazaar
Jawani Ki Hawa
Kaagaz Ke Phool Rocky
Paigham Nandu
Mr. John
Zara Bachke
Black Cat

1960-69[edit]

Year Title Role Notes
1960's
1960 Chaudhvin Ka Chand Mirza Masaraddik Shaiza
Ghar Ki Laaj
Kaala Aadmi
Ek Phool Chaar Kaante
Mughal-E-Azam
Rickshawala
Basant
1961 Chhote Nawab
Modern Girl
Opera House
Suhag Sindoor
Wanted
1962 Girls Hostel
Aashiq
Neeli Aankhen
Sachche Moti
Baat Ek Raat Ki C.I. Dholakia / 'C.I.D.'
1963 Ghar Basake Dekho Jaikishen Ram Agnihotri, alias "Jackson"
Kahin Pyaar Na Ho Jaaye
Kaun Apna Kaun Paraya
Mere Mehboob Anwar's friend, Bindadeen Rastogi
Mulzim
Phool Bane Angaare
Pyar ka Bandhan
Ustado ke Ustad
1964 Door Ki Awaaz Motilal 'Moti' D. Rai
Shehnai
1965 Bombay Race Course
Zindagi Aur Maut
1966 Baharen Phir Bhi Aayengi
Dil Diya Dard liya Murlidhar
Preet na Jane Reet
Dillagi
Insaaf
Pati Patni
Sagaai
Suraj
1967 Jaal
Bahu Begum Achchan
Milan Ki Raat
Dulhan Ek Raat Ki
Nawab Sirazuddaula
Night in London
Noorjehan
Palki
Taqdeer
Rajoo
Wahan ke Log
Shrimant Mehuna Pahije Marathi
1968 Baazi
Dil Aur Mohabbat
Kahin Din Kahin Raat
Duniya
Haseena Maan Jayegi Ghasitaram Aashiq
Mere Huzoor
Shikar
1969 Aadmi Aur Insaan
Do Raaste
Pyar Ka Sapna
Nannha Farishta
Sachaai
Wilait Pass Ajeet Punjabi

1970-1979[edit]

Year Title Role Notes
1970's
1970 Gopi Ramu
1971 Anand Issa Bhai Suratwala
Hungama
Memsaab Ramkhilavan
Sanjog Mansukh
Dushman Palmist (Special Appearance)
1972 Ek Bechara
Ek Hasina Do Deewane
Raaste Ka Patthar
Raja Jani
Yeh Gulistan Hamara
1973 Pyaar Ka Rishta Lachho
1974 Aarop
Badla
Dawat
Imaan
Jurm Aur Sazaa
Madhosh
1975 Dhoti Lota Chowpaty
Kaagaz Ki Nau
Sewak
Vandana
Pratiggya Birju Thekedaar
Zakhmee
1976 Bundal Baaz
Santan
Udanchoo
1977 Farishta Ya Qatil
Khel Khilari Ka
Mera Vachan Geeta Ki Kasam
1978 Nawab Sahib
Miya Fuski 007 Marathi

1981-2000[edit]

Year Title Role Notes
1980's
1980 Jaayen Toh Jaayen Kahan
Shaan Renu's Uncle
1981 Madine ki Galiyan
1983 Mazdoor Madho
Rishta Kagaz Ka
1984 Bindiya Chamkegi
Meraa Dost Meraa Dushman Mulayam Singh
1985 Hum Dono
1987 Mera Karam Mera Dharam
1988 The Perfect Murder Jain English
1990's
1997 Chachi 420 Joseph

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d e f g h i Ghose, Sagarika (11 June 1997). "Return Of The Wit". Outlook. Retrieved 1 December 2010.
  2. ^ a b c d e "Gentleman comedian passes away". The Tribune. 29 July 2003. Retrieved 1 December 2010.
  3. ^ a b c d e "Johnny Walker... signing off on a high". The Hindu. 1 August 2003. Archived from the original on 31 December 2013. Retrieved 18 November 2013.

External links[edit]