Neetu Kapoor (née Singh; born Harneet Kaur; 8 July 1958[1]), is an Indian actress who is known for appearing in Hindi films throughout the late 1960s, 1970s and early 1980s. In 2012, Singh was inducted into the Walk of the Stars, an entertainment hall of fame at Bandra bandstand in Mumbai.[2]

Neetu Kapoor
Kapoor in 2012
Harneet Kaur

(1958-07-08) 8 July 1958 (age 65)
Other namesNeetu Singh
Years active
  • 1966–1983
  • 2009–2013
  • 2022–Present
(m. 1980; died 2020)
RelativesKapoor family

Singh made her debut in the swashbuckler film Suraj (1966) and thereafter played a dual role in the romantic comedy Do Kaliyaan (1968). She began her transition to mature roles with the vigilante film Rickshawala (1973) and had her breakthrough with Nasir Hussain's masala film Yaadon Ki Baaraat (1973), where she appeared as a dancer. She rose to prominence with roles in the crime drama film Deewaar (1975), the thriller film Khel Khel Mein (1975), the musical film Kabhi Kabhie (1976), the masala film Amar Akbar Anthony (1977) and the fantasy film Dharam Veer (1977). Her performances in the crime drama film Parvarish (1977), the horror film Jaani Dushman (1979), the disaster film Kaala Patthar (1979) and the musical film Yaarana (1981) were praised, and for Kaala Patthar, she was nominated for the Filmfare Award for Best Supporting Actress.[3]

In 1980, she married actor Rishi Kapoor, with whom she had two children, including the actor Ranbir Kapoor. She went on a hiatus after appearing in the thriller film Ganga Meri Maa (1983). Nearly three decades later, she made her acting comeback with a minor role Love Aaj Kal (2009). She has since led the comedy film Do Dooni Chaar (2010) which won her a Zee Cine Award, the action film Besharam (2013), and made a guest appearance in the romantic drama Jab Tak Hai Jaan (2012) and starred in the film Jugjugg Jeeyo (2022), which earned her another nomination for the Filmfare Award for Best Supporting Actress.

Early life Edit

Singh was born on 8 July 1958, as Harneet Kaur in New Delhi to Punjabi Sikh parents, Darshan Singh and Rajee Kaur Singh. She began acting as a child artist shortly after her father's death.[1][4][5]

Career Edit

Singh entered films as an uncredited child artist in Suraj (1966) starring Vyjayanthimala and Rajendra Kumar. This was followed by appearances in other top-grossing films like Dus Lakh (1966), Do Kaliyaan (1968), and Waris (1969). She was particularly appreciated for playing the double role of twin sisters in Do Kaliyaan.[1] In most of these films, she was credited as Baby Sonia.

In 1973, she played her first lead role in Rickshawala opposite Randhir Kapoor. The film was a remake of the Tamil film Rickshawkaran (1971), but failed to match the success of this film. Later that year, however, Singh garnered mainstream attention for her appearance in a popular song "Lekar Hum Deewana Dil" from Nasir Hussain's blockbuster film Yaadon Ki Baaraat (1973).

The romantic films Rafoo Chakkar (1975) and Khel Khel Mein (1975) established her and Rishi Kapoor as a popular on-screen pair, and they were subsequently cast in several more films together. Khel Khel Mein in particular was propelled by the success of R.D. Burman's soundtrack. She gained further commercial success in Shankar Dada (1976) opposite Shashi Kapoor and Maha Chor (1976) opposite Rajesh Khanna.

Her two most prominent films in this time period were Deewaar (1975) and Kabhi Kabhie (1976), both ensemble films directed by leading filmmaker Yash Chopra. In the action drama Deewaar, she played the vivacious love interest to Shashi Kapoor.[6] The ensemble musical romantic drama Kabhi Kabhie, which featured her as an adoptee determined to find her birth mother, was one of the most acclaimed films of that time and continues to be remembered today for its soundtrack by Khayyam and Sahir Ludhianvi.[7]

Singh's most successful release of 1977 was Amar Akbar Anthony, directed by veteran filmmaker Manmohan Desai, in which she played a young doctor in love with a singer played by Rishi Kapoor. In the same year, Desai also cast her in the adventure film Dharam Veer opposite Jeetendra and the crime drama Parvarish opposite Amitabh Bachchan. All three of these films ranked among the top five highest-grossing films of the year, with Amar Akbar Anthony taking the top spot.[citation needed]

For the next few years, Singh achieved success as the solo female lead in films like Priyatama (1977), Maha Badmaash (1977), Dhongee (1979), and Chorni (1982). She was also featured in a number of popular ensemble films like Adalat (1977), Kasme Vaade (1978), Jaani Dushman (1979), Kaala Patthar (1979), The Burning Train (1980), Yaarana (1981), and Teesri Aankh (1982). In these films, her most successful associations were with actors like Jeetendra, Amitabh Bachchan, and Randhir Kapoor. For Yash Chopra's Kaala Patthar, she earned her first nomination for the Filmfare Award for Best Supporting Actress.[citation needed]

After her marriage in 1980, she retired from acting. Her last film to be released was Ganga Meri Maa (1983). 25 years later, Singh was seen in a cameo appearance in Imtiaz Ali's Love Aaj Kal (2009).

Singh's first lead role post-retirement was that of a middle-class Punjabi mother in Habib Faisal's Do Dooni Chaar (2010), which won the National Film Award for Best Feature Film in Hindi. She then made a special appearance in Yash Chopra's final film Jab Tak Hai Jaan (2012), and also co-starred with her son Ranbir Kapoor in the comedy Besharam (2013). After 9 years, she ended her hiatus by starring opposite Anil Kapoor in Jug Jugg Jeeyo. Her performance earned her second nomination for the Filmfare Award for Best Supporting Actress.[8]

Personal life Edit

Kapoor with her husband Rishi Kapoor at Rakesh Roshan's birthday bash in 2017

During production of the film Kabhie Kabhie, Singh and actor Rishi Kapoor became romantically involved off-screen. The pair married on 22 January 1980. The couple have two children, Riddhima Kapoor Sahni (born 15 September 1980) and Ranbir Kapoor (born 28 September 1982). Riddhima is a fashion designer who married Delhi-based industrialist Bharat Sahni on 25 January 2006. Through Riddhima, they have a granddaughter, Samara Sahni (born 23 March 2011).[9] Ranbir is an Indian actor who married actress Alia Bhatt on 14 April 2022. Through Ranbir, they have a granddaughter, Raha Kapoor (born 6 November 2022).

Following a recurring battle with leukemia and treatment in New York City, Rishi Kapoor died on 30 April 2020.[10] During the filming of Jug Jugg Jeeyo, she tested positive for COVID-19 in Chandigarh in December 2020.[11] However, she recovered after an isolation period, returning to the film's sets in early January 2021.

Reception and legacy Edit

Singh with husband Rishi and son Ranbir

Singh is regarded as one of the greatest actors of Indian cinema.[12] In 2022, she was placed in Outlook India's "75 Best Bollywood Actresses" list.[13] One of the highest paid actress of late 1970s, Singh appeared in Box Office India's "Top Actresses" list 1975 and 1977.[14] She was inducted into the Walk of the Stars, at Bandra Bandstand, where her hand print was preserved under her married name Neetu Kapoor.[15]

Filmography Edit

Films Edit

Year Title Role Notes
1966 Suraj Young Geeta


Dus Lakh Credited as Baby Sonia
1968 Do Dooni Char Ban Devi Credited as Baby Sonia
Do Kaliyaan Ganga/Jamuna Credited as Baby Sonia; Dual role
1969 Waris Baby Credited as Baby Sonia
1970 Ghar Ghar Ki Kahani Roopa Credited as Baby Sonia
Pavitra Paapi Vidya Credited as Baby Sonia
1973 Rickshawala Kiran Debut as heroine[17]
Yaadon Ki Baaraat Dancer Special appearance[18]
1974 Shatranj Ke Mohre [19]
Zehreela Insaan Margaret
Hawas Neetu
1975 Khel Khel Mein Nisha
Rafoo Chakkar Ritu
Zinda Dil Jyoti Chand
Deewaar Veera Narang
1976 Sharafat Chod Di Maine Radha
Shankar Dada Roopa Verma
Kabhie Kabhie Pinky Kapoor
Maha Chor Neetu
Bhala Manus Meena
1977 Aadalat Geeta Verma
Dharam Veer Roopa
Amar Akbar Anthony Dr. Salma Ali
Parvarish Neetu
Doosra Aadmi Timsi
Dhongee Neelima
Maha Badmaash Seema / Pinky Dual role
Ab Kya Hoga Chitralekha
Priyatama Dolly
1978 Kasme Vaade Neeta
Heeralal Pannalal Neelam
Anjane Mein
Chakravyuha Chhaya
1979 Jhoota Kahin Ka Anita Verma/Sheetal Khanna
The Great Gambler Mala
Aatish Shanno
Kaala Patthar Channo Singh
Duniya Meri Jeb Mein
Jaani Dushman Gauri
1980 Chunaoti
The Burning Train Madhu
Dhan Daulat
Choron Ki Baaraat
1981 Ek Aur Ek Gyarah
Khoon Ka Rishta
Yaarana Komal
Waqt Ki Deewar
1982 Chorni
Raaj Mahal Rajkumari Ratna
Teesri Aankh Nisha
1983 Ganga Meri Maa Neetu
Jaane Jaan Meena
2009 Love Aaj Kal Older Harleen Kaur
2010 Do Dooni Chaar Kusum Duggal
2012 Jab Tak Hai Jaan Pooja Guest appearance
2013 Besharam Head Constable Bulbul Chautala
2022 Jugjugg Jeeyo Geeta Saini [20]

Television Edit

Year Title Role Notes
2022 Dance Deewane Juniors Judge TV debut[21]

Accolades Edit

Year Award Category Work Result Ref
1980 Filmfare Awards Best Supporting Actress Kaala Patthar Nominated [22]
2011 Screen Awards Best Actress Do Dooni Chaar Nominated [23]
Stardust Awards Best Actress Won [24]
Zee Cine Awards Best Lifetime Jodi (with Rishi Kapoor) Won [25]
2023 Filmfare Awards Best Supporting Actress Jugjugg Jeeyo Nominated [20]

References Edit

  1. ^ a b c Farook, Farhana (8 July 2018). "Diving deep into the stardom of the spice girl Neetu Singh". Filmfare.
  2. ^ Raheja, Dinesh (9 April 2003). "The unforgettable Neetu Singh". Retrieved 25 July 2016.
  3. ^ "Check out the complete list of Filmfare Awards Winners from 1953 to 2020". Filmfare. Retrieved 14 September 2020.
  4. ^ "Neetu Singh on how she coped up after Rishi Kapoor's death: 'I started socialising, worked on movies'". PINKVILLA. 8 April 2022. Archived from the original on 8 April 2022. Retrieved 12 January 2023.
  5. ^ Service, Tribune News. "Neetu Kapoor's answer to trolls who wished her 'cry and suffer as Rishi Kapoor's widow'". Tribuneindia News Service. Retrieved 12 January 2023.
  6. ^ Ayaz, Shaikh (17 January 2020). "Film of the Month: 1975's Deewaar". The Indian Express.
  7. ^ "40 years of Yash Chopra's 'Kabhie Kabhie'". News18. 27 January 2016.
  8. ^ Chaubey, Pranita (12 November 2020). "Jug Jugg Jeeyo: Neetu Kapoor, Anil Kapoor, Varun Dhawan And Kiara Advani To Begin Shooting". NDTV.
  9. ^ "Kapoor's family day out - Times of India". The Times of India.
  10. ^ ऋषि कपूर का 10वर्ष की उम्र में निधन, अमिताभ बच्चन ने ट्वीट कर दी जानकारी
  11. ^ "Neetu Kapoor confirms she has tested positive for Covid-19, says she is 'feeling better' now". Hindustan Times. 10 December 2020. Retrieved 24 January 2021.
  12. ^ "Top heroines of Bollywood". India Today. Archived from the original on 28 November 2020. Retrieved 24 August 2020.
  13. ^ "75 Bollywood Actresses Who Ruled The Silver Screen With Grace, Beauty And Talent". Outlook. 16 August 2022. Archived from the original on 16 August 2022. Retrieved 16 August 2022.
  14. ^ "Top Actresses". Box Office India. Archived from the original on 4 January 2012. Retrieved 24 April 2020.
  15. ^ Saraswathy, M. (1 April 2012). "Walking with the stars". Business Standard India. Retrieved 24 November 2019.
  16. ^ "Arjun Rampal's new co-star is little Munni from 'Bajrangi Bhaijaan' - Bollywood's cutest child actors". The Times of India.
  17. ^ "The unforgettable Neetu Singh".
  18. ^ Farook, Farhana (8 July 2018). "Diving deep into the stardom of the spice girl Neetu Singh". Filmfare.
  19. ^ "Neetu Singh Complete Filmography". Bollywood. Retrieved 2 May 2020.
  20. ^ a b "Nominations list for the 68th Filmfare Awards 2023". Retrieved 28 December 2022.
  21. ^ "Here's what Neetu Kapoor thinks about venturing into TV space as a judge in Dance Deewane Juniors". Pinkvilla. 10 April 2022.
  22. ^ "Check out the complete list of Filmfare Awards Winners from 1953 to 2020". Filmfare. Retrieved 14 September 2020.
  23. ^ "Nominations for 17th Annual Star Screen Awards 2011". Bollywood Hungama. 3 January 2011. Archived from the original on 4 February 2018. Retrieved 4 February 2018.
  24. ^ "Stardust Awards Winner 2011". Stardust. 9 February 2011. Archived from the original on 12 February 2011. Retrieved 4 February 2018.
  25. ^ "Hrithik, SRK top Zee Cine Awards". Hindustan Times. 15 January 2011. Retrieved 24 November 2019.

External links Edit