Born Tabassum Hashmi
November 4, 1970 (1970-11-04) (age 39)
Hyderabad, India
Other name(s) Tabbu
Occupation Actress
Years active 1991, 1994 – present
Spouse(s) None

Tabu (Hindi: तब्बू) (born Tabassum Hashmi (Telugu: తబస్సుం హష్మి) on 4 November 1970) is an Indian film actress. She has mainly acted in Hindi films, though she has also starred in Telugu, Tamil,Malayalam, Marathi, Bengali language films, as well as one American film. She has won the National Film Award for Best Actress twice, and she holds the record for the most wins of Filmfare's Critics Award for Best Female Performer, with four.

Despite a few exceptions, Tabu is best-known for acting in artistic, low-budget films that go on to garner more critical appreciation than substantial box office figures. Her appearances in commercially successful films were few, and her parts in these films were small, such as Border (1997), Saajan Chale Sasural (1996), Biwi No.1 and Hum Saath-Saath Hain: We Stand United (1999). Her most notable performances include Maachis (1996), Virasat (1997), Hu Tu Tu (1999), Astitva (2000), Chandni Bar (2001), Maqbool (2003) and Cheeni Kum (2007), 'Toh Baat Pakki'(2010). Her leading role in Mira Nair's American film The Namesake also drew major praise. Known to be selective about her film roles, she has said, "I do films which move me and most of all, the unit and the director should appeal to me."[1]

[edit] Early life

Tabu was born in Hyderabad to Jamal Hashmi and Rizwana in 1971,[2] although other sources indicate 1970. Soon after, her parents divorced. Her mother was a school teacher and her maternal grandparents were retired professors who ran a school. Her grandfather, Mohammed Ahsan was a professor of Mathematics and her grandmother was a professor of English Literature. She went to St. Anns high school in Hyderabad. Tabu moved to Mumbai in 1983 and studied at St. Xavier's College for two years.[3]

She is the niece of Shabana Azmi and the younger sister of actress Farah Naaz. She has homes in Mumbai and Hyderabad.[4]

[edit] Career

[edit] Early career

Tabassum "Tabu" Hashmi began her career in the film Hum Naujawan (1985) at the age of fifteen; she played Dev Anand's daughter in the film. Her first role as an actress was in the Telugu film Coolie No. 1. In December 1987, Boney Kapoor launch two Big Films, Roop Ki Rani Choro Raja and Prem. In Prem, Tabu was signed opposite Sanjay Kapoor. The film took eight years in making. Tabu once jokingly said "I should get a the most waiting newcomer of decade". Her first release in Hindi as a leading lady was Pehla Pehla Pyar which went un-noticed.[5] She came into prominence with her role in Vijaypath (1994) opposite Ajay Devgan for which she received the Filmfare Best Female Debut Award. This was followed by many films that did not do well at the box office.

[edit] Success (1996–present)

In 1996, Tabu had eight releases. Two films Saajan Chale Sasural and Jeet went on to be hits; both were within the top five films of that year.[6] Her other significant film, Maachis, was critically acclaimed. Her role as a Punjabi woman caught in the rise of Sikh insurgency was acclaimed; she went on to win her first National Film Award for Best Actress for her performance.

Tabu first release of 1997 was Border. The movie was about the real life events surrounding the Battle of Longewala during the 1971 Indo-Pak war. She played the role of Sunny Deol's wife. Her role was small but the film went on to be the biggest hit of 1997.[7] That year, she also starred in the critically acclaimed film Virasat. The film was a success at the box office; Tabu won the Filmfare Critics Award for Best Performance.

In 1999, she starred in two successful multi-starrer films Biwi No.1 and Hum Saath-Saath Hain: We Stand United. Both were the first and second biggest hits of that year respectively.[8]

Tabu as Aditi in Astitva with Sachin Khedekar

In 2000, the actress starred in Hera Pheri and Astitva. The former was a box office success whilst the latter was critically acclaimed.[9] She received her third Filmfare Critics Award for Best Performance for Astitva.[10]

2001 saw her star in Chandni Bar directed by Madhur Bhandarkar. Her portrayal of a bar dancer met with unanimous praise, and she won her second National Film Award for Best Actress for her performance.[11] Critic, Taran Adarsh said, "Chandni Bar is Tabu's film all the way and there are no two opinions on that. Her performance deserves the highest marks and of course, all the awards. Her work is flawless and the impact her character makes on the minds of the viewer is also due to a tailor-made role".[12] Another critic mentioned, "if there is one actress who can carry a film on her shoulders, it is Tabu. As usual, she sparkles".[13]

She has acted in a number of Telugu movies, many of them very successful, such as Coolie No. 1 and Ninne Pelladutha, the latter being one of her most famous and popular movies.[14]

In 2003, Tabu starred in an adaptation of William Shakespeare's Macbeth. The actress played Nimmi based on the character Lady Macbeth. The film titled Maqbool was directed by Vishal Bharadwaj and premiered at the 2003 Toronto International Film Festival.[15] Maqbool was a box office failure but was met with huge acclaim. Tabu's performance opened to much appreciation; critic Ron Ahluwalia said, "Tabu shines in a dark role. The most versatile actress in Bollywood takes to villainy like a second nature. She is menacing and seductive, but keeps an innocent look on her face, making her even viler. The way Tabu delivers her taunts simply perfect. Her gradual insanity is heart-wrenching and her final outburst is easily the highlight of the film."[16] Another critic said, "Tabu is fantastic in a complex role. Her performance in the film is worthy of awards. After Chandni Bar, this is another role that will be remembered for a long, long time."[17]

She had a supporting role in Fanaa (2006), with Aamir Khan and Kajol. The film went on to become the fourth biggest hit of that year.[18]

In 2007, Tabu starred in her first Hollywood film, The Namesake, directed by Mira Nair. The film was a big hit overseas.[19] She also starred in Cheeni Kum in which she played a 34 year-old woman who falls in love with a 64 year-old played by Amitabh Bachchan. Critics were generally positive towards the film; Taran Adarsh said, "Tabu stands on her feet despite a formidable co-star's domineering presence. She's excellent."[20] Though the film did not do as well domestically, it performed well overseas, especially in UK and USA.[21]

She started off 2009 by being featured on the cover of Vogue India's January 2009 issue.

[edit] Personal life

She is the life member of International Club of Asian Academy Of Film and Television, Noida.

In 1998, Tabu was charged with poaching two blackbucks in Kankani during the filming of Hum Saath Saath Hain along with co-stars Salman Khan, Saif Ali Khan, Sonali Bendre and Neelam.[22] The charges were dropped soon after and Tabu was acquitted.[23]

[edit] Filmography

Year Film Role Notes
1985 Hum Naujawan Priya as a child artiste and Devanand's daughter
1991 Coolie No. 1
Telugu film
1994 Pehla Pehla Pyaar Sapna
Vijaypath Mohini aka Mona Winner, Filmfare Best Female Debut Award
1995 Prem Lachi/Sonia Jetley
Saajan Ki Baahon Mein Kavita
Telugu film
Haqeeqat Sudha
1996 Saajan Chale Sasural Divya Khurana
Kalapani Parvathi Malayalam film
Kadhal Desam Divya Tamil film
Winner Filmfare Best Actress Award (Tamil)
Himmat Anju
Tu Chor Main Sipahi Kajal
Jeet Tulsi Special appearance

Nominated, Filmfare Best Supporting Actress Award

Ninne Pelladatha Mahalaxmi Telugu film
Winner, Filmfare Best Actress Award (Telugu)
Maachis Veerandra Winner, National Film Award for Best Actress

Nominated, Filmfare Best Actress Award

1997 Virasat Gehna Winner, Filmfare Critics Award for Best Performance
Nominated, Filmfare Best Actress Award
Darmiyan Chitra
Border Kuldeep's wife
Iruvar Selvam's lover Tamil film
1998 Chachi 420 Janki Paswan
Aavida Maa Aavide Archana Telugu film
Two Thousand One Billu
Hanuman Anja
1999 Kohram: The Explosion Insp. Kiran Patekar
Hum Saath-Saath Hain: We Stand United Sadhana
Hu Tu Tu Panna Winner, Filmfare Critics Award for Best Performance
Nominated, Filmfare Best Actress Award
Biwi No.1 Lovely
Thakshak Suman
Thaayin Manikodi Rani Tamil film
2000 Snegithiye ACP Gayatri Tamil film
Cover Story Jasmine Malayalam film
Hera Pheri Anuradha Shivshankar Panikar
Kandukondain Kandukondain Sowmiya Tamil film
Tarkieb Roshni Choubey
Dil Pe Mat Le Yaar Kamya Lal
Shikari Suman
Astitva Aditi Winner, Filmfare Critics Award for Best Performance
Nominated, Filmfare Best Actress Award, Marathi film
2001 Ghaath Kavita Chaudhary
Dil Ne Phir Yaad Kiya Roshni Batra
Chandni Bar Mumtaz Ali Ansari Winner, National Film Award for Best Actress
Nominated, Filmfare Best Actress Award
Aamdani Atthani Kharcha Rupaiyaa Meena
2002 Maa Tujhhe Salaam Captain Sonia Khanna
Filhaal... Rewa Singh
Chennakeshava Reddy Sita Telugu film
Zindagi Khoobsoorat Hai Shalu
Saathiya Savatri Rao Cameo
2003 Abar Aranye Amrita Bengali film
Khanjar: The Knife Shilpa
Hawa Sanjana
Jaal: The Trap Neha Pandit
Maqbool Nimmi
2004 Main Hoon Na
Special appearance
Meenaxi: A Tale of Three Cities Meenaxi/Maria
2005 Silsiilay Rehana
Bhagmati Bhagmati
Andarivaadu Shanti Telugu film
2006 Shock Geetha Telugu film
Fanaa Malini Tyagi
2007 Sarhad Paar Pammi
The Namesake Ashima Ganguli
Cheeni Kum Nina Verma Winner, Filmfare Critics Award for Best Performance
Om Shanti Om Herself Special appearance in song Deewangi Deewangi
2008 Idee Sangati Swarajya Lakshmi Telugu film
Pandurangadu Amrutha Telugu film
2010 Toh Baat Pakki Rajeshwari
Season's Greetings
The Legend Of Kunal Tishyarakshita Filming

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