Home / Bollywood / Happy birthday Sanjay Dutt: Ahead of KGF 2’s Adheera, 5 times he embraced the dark side

Actor Sanjay Dutt celebrates his 61st birthday on Wednesday and like last year, it will also be marked with a big movie announcement. The makers of his highly anticipated film KGF 2 will reportedly reveal his look from the movie, something fans have been eagerly waiting for long.

Sanjay reportedly plays the villain, Adheera, in KGF 2. Talking about picking Sanjay for the role, actor Yash had said that he was always the first choice. “Sanjay ji was the first choice for the role from the beginning. Even when we planned to make the film only in Kannada, he was choice for the character of Adheera. When Prashant narrated the character, he was hell bent on signing Sanjay. We had even approached him for the first part but he was occupied with some other commitment,” Yash said.

However, this will not be the first time Sanjay will embrace the dark side. Since early in his career, Sanjay has often picked non-conventional role that showed him tapping into his more sinister side. Take a look at all his best non-hero appearances in movies.



Sanjay Dutt starred in this 1993 blockbuster with Madhuri Dixit. It was produced and directed by Subhash Ghai. The film revolved around the escape and capture of a criminal Ballu (Dutt) by inspector Ram (Jackie Shroff) and Ram’s girlfriend, Ganga (Madhuri). Sanjay got the cool, carefree criminal vibe of Ballu right and even the more soft sides of him. From behind his dark sunglasses, long hair and muffler around the neck, he could intimidate his foes with one look.



This award-winning Mahesh Manjrekar directorial is still considered his greatest work. Sanjay plays a Mumbai lad who falls down the rabbit hole of crime and power, only to emerge as an irredeemable gangster. He gloats about his power and accesses it with chagrin. While no foe could bring him down, it end comes at the hands of his own mother who can no longer see her son follow the path he has set himself on. Many call the climax scene of Vaastav among the most affecting ones in Hindi cinema.



Kaante, though a rip-off of Quentin Tarantino’s classic hit Reservoir Dogs, is one of the better copy-paste jobs produced by Bollywood. Starring an array of stars such as Amitabh Bachchan, Suniel Shetty, it showed Sanjay as the flamboyant one of the group of criminals planning a heist.

Talking about Kaante, Tarantino had said, “Here I am, watching a film that I’ve directed and then it goes into each character’s background. And I’m like, ‘Whoa’. For, I always write backgrounds and stuff and it always gets chopped off during the edit. And so I was amazed on seeing this. I felt, this isn’t Reservoir Dogs. But then it goes into the warehouse scene and I am like, ‘Wow, it’s back to Reservoir Dogs’. Isn’t it amazing!”



This was perhaps Sanjay’s darkest, most villainous Bollywood role. He played Kancha Cheena in this remake of hit 1990 film starring Amitabh Bachchan. The new version starred Hrithik Roshan as the lead and Sanjay as his nemesis. He plays a drug lord in the film, ruling over Mandwa.

Sanjay underwent the biggest physical transformation of his career for the role. He bulked up almost twice his size and even wiped out all his hair and facial hair, eyebrows included. Dutt explained his look by saying, “Kancha is suffering from an ailment that leaves him hairless. I shaved my head for the role, not once but twice, and the eye-brows and eye-lashes have been digitally removed.”

Also read: What Shah Rukh Khan once said about leaving movies for Gauri Khan: ‘I would go insane but for her’



In Ashutosh Gowariker’s 2019 film Panipat, Sanjay played Afghan king Ahmad Shah Abdali. His menacing and powerful look earned him kudos from fans even as the film failed to leave a mark on box office.

Praising Sanjay’s work, lead actor Arjun Kapoor had said, “Some people have a personality that just emits. He’s a big screen hero. He is larger-than-life on camera. On camera, he fills the screen.” Actor Kriti Sanon has also said, “I love his personality. You just get awestruck. The fight is more enjoyable when the villain is strong and powerful. I don’t think anybody else could have done it the way he has. He is so good in it.”

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