Chand Usmani (3 January 1933 – 26 November 1989) was an Indian actress in Hindi films from the 1950s to the late 1980s. She won the 1971 Filmfare Award for Best Supporting Actress. She is best remembered for playing self-sacrificing wives and mothers.
|Died||26 November 1989 (aged 56)|
|Awards||Filmfare Best Supporting Actress Award for Pehchaan (1971)|
Chandbibi Khanam Usmani was born on 3 January 1933 in Agra, Uttar Pradesh, into a Pashtun family. She married Mukul Dutt (director of Aan Milo Sajna), with whom she had a son, Roshan. She ran a halfway house at her home in Mahim for runaway girls who had come to Mumbai seeking a career in films. She died in Mumbai on 26 November 1989.
Chand Usmani came to notice by participating in a talent contest called 'Kardar-Kolynos-Teresa Contest' in 1949, winning second place. In 1953, she debuted as the heroine in Jeewan Jyoti opposite Shammi Kapoor (his debut too). She also starred in Barati, Baap Re Baap and Samrat Prithviraj Chauhan, and had major roles in several other films, including Rangeen Raten, Naya Daur, Prem Patra and Pehchan.
She received much critical acclaim: a review of Rangeen Raten (1956) said that she "gives a brilliant performance; hers is also the best developed character, and as a result she becomes the life and soul of the film." In Baap Re Baap, a key scene is noted for "the joy exhibited by Usmani on screen". The Film Heritage Foundation of India describes her as the "effervescent Chand Usmani, with her heart-warming smile". She won a Filmfare Award for Best Supporting Actress in 1971, for her portrayal of the character Champa, a prostitute, in the 1970 film Pehchan. Writing nearly 40 years later, The Hindu's film reviewer considered that "Chand Usmani does justice to Champa's role displaying restraint, poise and grace in a role which provided ample opportunity to easily go over the top." Despite having a long career, she said in an interview with Tabassum that she regretted not having an agent/manager, which led to her not getting diverse roles and not having more success. In many of her roles, she played a self-sacrificing wife, mother, girlfriend or sister, as summed up by Mahasweta Devi in her 1986 short story 'The Wet-Nurse':
- "Jashoda was a true example of Indian womanhood. She was typical of a chaste and loving wife and devoted mother, ideals which defy intelligence and rational explanation, which involve sacrifice and dedication stretching the limits of imagination, and which have been kept alive in the popular Indian psyche through the ages, beginning with Sati-Savitri-Sita right down to Nirupa Roy and Chand Usmani in our times."
|Baap Re Baap||1955||Kokila|
|Duniya Rang Rangeeli||1957||Radha|
|Samrat Prithviraj Chauhan||1959||Samyukta|
|Zamana Badal Gaya||1961|
|Zindagi Aur Hum||1962|
|Haqeeqat||1964||Ram Singh's Girlfriend|
|Aprilfool||1964||Mrs. Brijlal Sinha|
|Mohabbat Zindagi Hai||1966||Lajjo|
|Milan Ki Raat||1967||Savitri Singh|
|Ghar Ka Chirag||1967|
|Aanchal Ke Phool||1968||Rani|
|Jiyo Aur Jeene Do||1969|
|Do Bhai||1969||Ranjana Singh / Ranjana Verma|
|Raaste Kaa Patthar||1972||Mrs. Choudhary|
|Resham Ki Dori||1974||Shanti||Uncredited|
|Ujala hi Ujala||1974||Anuradha's Mother|
|Khel Khel Mein||1975||Mrs. Anand|
|Raakhi Aur Rifle||1976|
|Jai Mahalaxmi Maa||1976|
|Bhala Manus||1976||Anand's Real Mother|
|Bhagwan Samaye Sansar Mein||1976||Eknath's Mother|
|Tinku||1977||Mrs. Jwala Prasad|
|Dharam Veer||1977||Mrs. Roopmati Singh|
|Ab Kya Hoga||1977||Rajesh's Mother|
|Hatyara||1977||Shanta D. Singh|
|Chambal Ki Raani||1979|
|Phir Wohi Raat||1980||Asha's Mother|
|Lahu Pukarega||1980||Sarla's Mother|
|Oh Bewafa||1980||Radha's Aunty|
|Ganga Aur Suraj||1980|
|Kasam Bhawani Ki||1981|
|Saajan Ki Saheli||1981||Chanda|
|Khoon Ki Takkar||1981||Shakuntala|
|Khush Naseeb||1982||Mrs. Geeta D. Sharma|
|Senurwa Bhail Mohaal||1984|
|Raja Aur Rana||1984||Vijay & Shakti's mother|
|Ganga Ke Paar||1985|
|Dil Ek Musafir||1985|
|Ulta Seedha||1985||Mrs. Roy|
|Sitapur Ki Geeta||1987||Mrs. Yashoda Singh|
|Insaaf Ki Manzil||1988|
|Zakhmi Aurat||1988||Mrs. Prakash|
|Mar Mitenge||1988||Akbar's Grandmother|
|Indira||1989||Mrs. Pratap Rai|
|Aakhri Muqabla||1989||Tripti's Mother|
|Aag Aur Angaray||1990|
|Lohe Ke Haath||1990||Posthumously Released|
|Amiri Garibi||1990||Radha||Posthumously Released|
|Rajoo Dada||1992||Posthumously Released|
|Waqt Ka Badshah||1992||Aunty||Posthumously Released|
|Yaar Meri Zindagi||2008||Posthumously Released|
- Biddle, Arthur W.; Bien, Gloria; Dharwadker, Vinay, eds. (1996). Contemporary Literature of Asia (Blair Press titles in contemporary world literature). Prentice Hall. p. 58. ISBN 9780133732597. Retrieved 26 November 2018.
- "The Untold Story of Chand Usmani - Bollywood Stories: Tabassum Talkies".
- Merchant, Hoshang (2009). Forbidden Sex, Forbidden Texts: New India's Gay Poets. Routledge. p. 53. ISBN 9780415484510. Retrieved 29 January 2019.
- India. Ministry of Information and Broadcasting. Research and Reference Division (1991). Mass Media in India 1991. Publications Division, Ministry of Information and Broadcasting, Government of India. Retrieved 29 January 2019.
- Film Heritage Foundation, India. "Character Artists of Indian Cinema - Chand Usmani".
- "Review of Rangeen Raten". Swatantra. 11: 38. 1956. Retrieved 26 November 2018. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
- Sharma, Devesh (8 September 2016). "Happy Birthday Asha Bhosle!". Filmfare. Retrieved 4 February 2019. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
- The Times of India Directory and Year Book Including Who's who. 1982. p. 310. Retrieved 27 January 2019.
- Malhotra, APS (10 March 2016). "Blast from the past Friday Review Pehchan (1970)". The Hindu. Retrieved 31 January 2019. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
- Devi, Mahasweta (1986). "The Wet-Nurse". In Butalia, Urvashi (ed.). Inner Line: The Zubaan Book of Stories by Indian Women. Zubaan, 2006. p. 33. ISBN 9788189013776. Retrieved 2 February 2019.
- Yarrow, Ralph (2012). Indian Theatre: Theatre of Origin, Theatre of Freedom. Routledge. p. 44. ISBN 9781136778759. Retrieved 2 February 2019.