Meet actor who gave up army dream for Bollywood, insulted by director, told to be a watchman, became India's top villain

This pan-India star was mocked for his origins, and when went to meet a director for a work opportunity in his films, he offered him a job as a watchman at his residence.

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The actor who was ridiculed as asked to become a watchman (Image source: Screengrab)

Bollywood has many iconic veterans who have left an unforgettable mark with their performances. Today, we will discuss an actor, a veteran who is regarded as one of the most dreaded villains in Bollywood. His on-screen persona body and dialogue delivery captivate the audience to the screen, and he has given some memorable villain roles. Today, Danny Denzongpa needs no introduction, but there was a phase in his life when he ran pole to post to establish himself. 

Not actor, but Danny aspired to become...

Born on February 25, 1948, Danny hails from a Nepali-speaking Bhutia family in Yuksom, Sikkim. Danny did his schooling in Birla Vidya Mandir, Nainital and completed college at St Joseph's College, Darjeeling. Danny's real name is Tshering Phintso Denzongpa.

While growing up, Danny wasn't inclined towards acting, and he aspired to become a soldier. In an interview with India Today, Danny said, "My first hero was this 6 ft 1-inch soldier in a smart uniform. I would sit on a stone and wait for him to emerge from the hills as if from eternity." Danny was keen to join the army, but his mother got to know that the soldiers who got caught in China were tortured, she didn't let him join the forces. 

In another interview with The Times of India, Danny revealed that he had qualified for the Armed Forces Medical College, Pune, but withdrew admission to join the Film and Television Institute of India (FTII), Pune. In this institute, he adopted Danny as his name as many people found his real name difficult to pronounce. The suggestion of the name was given by his batchmate, Jaya Bachchan (Bahaduri at that time). 

When Danny was offered the job of a watchman instead film

Since Danny hailed from the North-East region, he reportedly faced discrimination in his initial career. Even after graduating from FTII, his looks not only hampered his career. There is a popular story related to Danny when he went to meet director, Mohan Kumar. Reportedly Danny managed to meet Mohan at his residence and asked him to give work. Mohan reportedly laughed at him and offered him a watchman's job at his residence. Danny left Mohan's house without saying anything, but that insult pushed him to work harder and establish himself as an actor.

Danny didn't enter as a villain in Bollywood

The dreadful, sinister-looking Danny entered Bollywood with a positive role in Zaroorat (1972). However, Danny found success after he took the role of antogonist in Dhundh (1973). Since then he starred in several successful films such as Chor Machaye Shor (1974), 36 Ghante (1974), Fakira (1976), Kalicharan, Kaala Sona (1975), Devata (1978), The Burning Train (1980). Danny earned the tag of scene-stealer with his performances in the films Agneepath (1990), Ghatak (1996), Pukar (2001), and Robot (2010). He was last seen in Uunchai (2022). In 2003, Danny was awarded Padma Shri – India's fourth highest civilian honour from the Government of India.

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