Once upon a time, when the word ‘nepotism’ was not very common in Bollywood, many stragglers found their fate in the most popular film industry of Indian cinema. We often hear about the stories of many Bollywood stars who go from rags to riches, but it is not easy to succeed in such a huge competition. Sometimes, even after reaching the top of success, due to some mistakes, bad habits, or wrong choices of your own, it gets lost.
We will discuss here some famous Bollywood personalities, who have achieved success without a filmy background.
Akshay Kumar: A Chef To The Highest Tax Payer In Bollywood
From Rajiv Bhatia to Bollywood’s Akki, the journey was not very easy. He started his journey as a waiter in a Punjabi restaurant in Bangkok, then as a chef in Dhaka, Bangladesh. He has worked as a travel agent in Kolkata, and he even used to sell Kundan jewelry in Bombay. But he did not leave his zeal for martial arts, which helped him become the Khiladi of Bollywood. In the list of Bollywood stars rags to riches is incomplete without Akshay Kumar.
SRK: A Restaurant Owner To Bollywood King Khan
From a lower-middle-class family guy to the SRK of Bollywood, the journey of Shahrukh Khan will mesmerize you. After losing his father at the age of 14, he started managing his father’s restaurant business. But his aim in life was not confined to the narrow alleys of congested Old Delhi. So, he came to Mumbai. Once, at the beginning of his acting career, he told one of his friends that he would rule the city one day. He made it true after winning the title of King Khan of Bollywood.
Mithun Who really Went From Rags To Riches – A Rebel Naxal To Bollywood Superstar
It was not so easy to get a chance in Bollywood for the superstar Mithun Chakraborty when The Angry Young Man Amitabh Bachchan was in full swing. But for Mithun, in his words, ”I became an actor not by ambition but by compulsion”. Due to the unrest in Bengal in the 1970s, it was his compulsion to flee from Kolkata, as he joined the Naxalite movement. To avoid the police arrest, he gets into the city of Mumbai and struggled hard to snatch the title of Superstar of Bollywood.
Boman Irani: A Waiter To An Actor
Another inspiring story of a Bollywood actor who went from rags to riches is that of Boman Irani, whose father died six months before he was born. His journey, from shopkeeper to waiter, then photographer to theatre artist, to prominent Bollywood actor, director, and board advisor of the I. International Movement to Unite the Nations, will make you surprised.
Arshad Warsi: A Orphaned Boy To A Choreographer
Arshad Warsi, one of Bollywood’s most underrated actors, is a true inspiration. At the age of 14, he lost his father, and before turning the age of 18, he lost his mother also. After losing the property left by his father, he had to leave school before the 10th exam.
Started selling cosmetics products door to door to survive. After holding the 4th position in the World Dance Championship held in London, he started choreography in Bollywood. Then, in 1996, he made his film debut with Tere Mere Sapne. So how can the list of the actors from ”rags to riches” be completed without the discussion of Arshad Warsi?
Nawazuddin Siddiqui: From A Chemist To Raman Raghav
Having a professional degree does not guarantee success all the time. It is true in the case of Nawazuddin Siddiqui. Although he had a degree in acting from the National School of Drama, he struggled for 12 years before becoming famous for Gangs of Wasseypur. Even he worked as a watchman when he first came to Mumbai as he had not enough money to pay rent. In Baroda, he worked as a chemist and many other odd jobs due to his money problems.
Pankaj Tripathi: A Priest’s Son To The Mirzapur Star
A son of a priest in Bihar, Pankaj Tripathi believes that a person doesn’t need a “huge amount of money’ to be happy or comfortable in life. Although he started acting in 2004, he started being recognized by the public for his role in The Gangs of Wasseypore in 2012. He does not want to reveal much about these eight years of struggle. Only says, ” I have not lied on the Andheri Station because of my wife, who used to run the family then”. He is best known for his role in the Mirzapur: Criminal Justice Web Series.
Dharmendra: A Schoolmaster’s Son Turned Action Hero
In Bollywood, Dharmendra is well-known as Garam Dharam for his handsome gentlemanly look and good physique. But getting a chance in a film was not so easy for Dharmendra. When he first came to Mumbai from Punjab, without having money or food, he used to roam from studio to studio just to get a chance. In 1960, he got a chance to play a role in the movie Dil Bhi Tera Hum Bhi Tere, against a remuneration of Rs. 51. The rest is history.
Kangna Ranaut : Small Town Himachali Girl to Manikarnika
From a small-town girl to a Bollywood queen; the journey of Kangna Ranaut started in Bhambla, where she was born into a joint family. Initially, she wanted to become a doctor, but after a certain age, she got interested in acting. It’s shared that she even ran away from her home to pursue her passion for acting.
Mumbai was ruthless for her like it is for many budding artists but her hard work and stubbornness paid off. She won four Filmfare and three national awards without belonging to any filmy family background.
Helen: The Queen Of Cabaret Dance
The road to fame was never easy for a refugee girl, named Helen Anne Richardson Khan, who is best known as the Cabaret Queen of Bollywood. Her family migrated from Burma to India in order to escape the Japanese invasion of Burma. She came to Bollywood to help her mother run the household expenses, not out of passion. But life had other things for her, her hard work more than anything helped her progress from rags to riches.
Johnny Lever: A Pen Seller to The Comedy King
John Rao used to sell pens and dance along with imitations of Bollywood stars on the streets of Mumbai to attract buyers. Soon he joined Hindustan Unilever Ltd. to sustain his family. Once he mimicked some of his seniors at an annual function of his company; on that day he was named Johnny Lever. It was his passion for comedy and his hardships that earned him the title of “comedy king of Bollywood”.
Jackie Shroff: From A School Dropout To A Social Activist
Although Jackie Shroff belongs to a Gujarati merchant family, they lost all their money in the stock market. He dropped out of school after the 11th grade due to a lack of money. Jackie tried his luck as an apprentice chef and flight attendant and as a travel agent.
Soon, he started modelling and acting. Best known for his role in the movie Hero. Once he became bankrupt also when his film faced a huge failure at the box office. Still, he is continuing in Bollywood as an actor and a producer-director. He is also the brand ambassador of Thalassemia India and works for underprivileged children to give them education and treatment.
So, many Bollywood personalities came to Mumbai with an empty hand and reached the top of the industry. When luck and hard work shake hands there is nothing as impossible thereafter. These celebrities inspire us with thier hard work and making it from “rags to riches”.
Do comment your favourite bollywod celebrity, who inspire you can can inspire the hwole world.
Featured image- Facebook & Wikimedia
If you loved reading this story, you can also read about Know The Real Story Of Gangubai Kathiawadi
If you know more inspirational stories about any person, company, new idea, or social initiative, and want us to write them on mad4india.com, share such information with us on Instagram, Facebook, or LinkedIn.