Veteran theatre and film actor Raghubir Yadav has once again impressed the audience with his performance in web series Panchayat, a satirical take on the Indian governing system. In a career spanning over three decades, Yadav has been a part of eight films that were sent for the Oscars. He has won two international awards for acting and been a part of over 70 plays.
An alumnus of NSD, Raghubir Yadav has given some of the most memorable characters and groundbreaking performances both in films and TV shows. Here are his 11 best performances till date.
Mungerilal in Mungerilal Ke Haseen Sapne
In DD’s show, Yadav played a small-time clerk whose miseries didn’t just remain confined to his workplace where he had to deal with a nosy boss but his wife and father-in-law too would do everything to make his life hell. He gets bossed around by his wife at home and by his boss at the office. But later on, he finds peace in day-dreaming where he over-achieves all his unfulfilled desires. Yadav’s believable portrayal of a grumbling, frustrated average man that allowed people to relate to his struggles and dream, no matter how commonplace.
Chacha Chaudhary in Chacha Chaudhary
He connected with kids after he ruled the evening slots reserved for kids who would only get to watch Chacha Chaudhary in the evening-as a filler between their evening homework slots. He flawlessly brought alive Chacha Chaudhary’s sharp wit, detective skills, and general badassery.
Francis Massey in Massey Sahib
He entered the world of cinema with Pradip Krishen’s Massey Sahib: a period film about an over-smart yet bearable government clerk whose only aim in life is to win over his colonial boss. For which he won two international awards, Best Actor at the 1987 International Film Festival of India and Fipresci Critics Award for Best Actor at the 1986 Venice International Film Festival.
Chillum in Salaam Bombay!
He got recognized and validated for his role as Chillum from Salaam Bombay. As Chillum, a drug-addict, Yadav searched for the purpose of his life by taking care of a child. His portrayal of Chillum shatters you into pieces that only make you feel empathetic.
Bhura in Lagaan
It doesn’t happen everyday that chickens help a team learn the nuances of fielding! But it did in Lagaan, and those chickens belonged to Bhura. His split-second decision-making during a mix-up between the wickets gave the villagers an opportunity by keeping Bhuvan at the pitch during the game. Yadav convincingly portrayed Bhura’s emotions even in a limited screen presence.
Budhia in Peepli Live!
Playing Budhia in Peepli Live, Yadav beautifully walks the line of playing the selfish man engineering his younger brother’s suicide and still never completely falling out of favour with the audience. Yadav even sang the now-famous song Mehengai Dayan from the film.
Karim in Firaaq
There are a very few actors who are capable of gaining audience’s attention when sharing screen space with industry stalwarts like Naseeruddin Shah. Raghubir Yadav is one such actor, and he proved it with the role of Karim, Khan Sahib’s (Shah) loyal but whining aide in Firaaq.
Adolf Hitler in Gandhi to Hitler
As the twitchy Hitler, Raghuvir Yadav’s performance, replete with pounding tabletops and gyrating in spastic eruptions. Though the movie remains an entirely forgettable historical drama, Yadav added another feather to his range as an actor.
Loknath in Newton
In Newton, Yadav plays the elderly statesman accompanying Rajkummar Rao for the purpose of polling in a conflict area. And he alternates between the experienced man telling stories to someone who gets fed up of his idealistic boss’s netagiri. Raghubir Yadav was the representation of tired but cheerful acceptance.
Mauji’s father in Sui Dhaaga
Raghubir Yadav is typically solid as Dhawan’s disgruntled father. Yadav makes the audience smile even in the midst of a desolate situation. He has fun with his character, one who tickles people as hard as he laughs at his own jokes.
Pradhanpati in Panchayat
Unlike other films, Yadav’s ‘Pradhanpati’ is a warm, tactful father-figure to the village’s newly-appointed secretary in Panchayat. He’s both the domineering parent, and the ‘friend’.