Helen Indian Actress BiographySource(google.com.pk)
Early life and background
Helen was born on November 21, 1939 in Burma to an Anglo-Indian father and Burmese mother. She has a brother Roger and a sister Jennifer. Her father died during the Second World War. The family trekked to Mumbai in 1943 in order to escape from the Japanese occupation of Burma. Helen told Filmfare magazine during an interview in 1964, "we trekked alternately through wilderness and hundreds of villages, surviving on the generosity of people, for we were penniless, with no food and few clothes. Occasionally, we met British soldiers who provided us with transport, found us refuge and treated our blistered feet and bruised bodies and fed us. By the time we reached Dibrugarh in Assam, our group had been reduced to half. Some had fallen ill and been left behind, some had died of starvation and disease. My mother miscarried along the way. The survivors were admitted to the Dibrugarh hospital for treatment. Mother and I had been virtually reduced to skeletons and my brother's condition was critical. We spent two months in hospital. When we recovered, we moved to Calcutta". Helen had to quit her schooling to support her family because her mother's salary as a nurse was not enough to feed a family of four. In a documentary called Queen of the Nautch girls, Helen said she was 17 years old in 1957 when she got her first big break in Howrah Bridge.
Helen was introduced to Bollywood when a family friend, an actress known as Cukoo, helped her find jobs as a chorus dancer in the films Shabistan and Awara (1951). She was soon working regularly and was featured as a solo dancer in films such as Alif Laila (1954), Hoor-e-Arab (1955), and the popular number "Mr. John O Baba Khan" in the film Baarish.
During the filming of Shikari on Dec 1962
Helen got her break in 1958 when she performed the song "Mera Naam Chin Chin Chu" in Shakti Samanta's film, Howrah Bridge, which was sung by Geeta Dutt. After that, offers started pouring in throughout the 1960s and 1970s. During her initial career, Geeta Dutt sang many songs for her. The Bollywood playback singer Asha Bhosle also frequently sang for Helen, particularly during the 1960s and the early 70s.
She was nominated for the Filmfare best supporting actress award in 1965 for her role in Gumnaam. She played dramatic roles such as the rape victim in Shakti Samanta's Pagla Kahin Ka (1970).
Writer Salim Khan helped her get roles in some of the films he was co-scripting with Javed Akhtar: Imaam Dharam, Don, Dostana, and Sholay. This was followed by a role in Mahesh Bhatt's film Lahu Ke Do Rang (1979), for which she won a Filmfare Best Supporting Actress Award. In 1999 Helen was given India's Filmfare lifetime achievement award.
Helen officially retired from movies in 1983, but she has since then appeared in a few guest roles such as Khamoshi: The Musical (1996) and Mohabbatein (2000). She also made a special appearance as the mother of real-life step-son Salman Khan's character in Hum Dil De Chuke Sanam. Helen was selected for the Padma Shri awards of 2009 along with Aishwarya Rai and Akshay Kumar.
Helen also performed numerous stage shows in London, Paris, and Hong Kong.
In 1973, Helen, Queen of the Nautch Girls, a 30-minute documentary film from Merchant Ivory Films, was released. Anthony Korner directed and narrated the film. A book about Helen was published by Jerry Pinto in 2006, titled The Life and Times of an H-Bomb, which went on to win the National Film Award for Best Book on Cinema in 2007.
Helen appeared as a Judge in the semi finals and finals of the 2009 Indian Dancing Queen (Dance Contest).
For 16 years from 1957 to 1973, Helen lived with film director P.N Arora who was her benefactor. She broke up with him on her 34th birthday on November 21, 1973. In 1981, Helen married Salim Khan, and became his second wife and they adopted a girl, Arpita. Salman Khan, Sohail Khan and Arbaaz Khan are her stepsons. She has acted as Salman Khan's mother in the film Hum Dil De Chuke Sanam, as his grand mother-in-law in Khamoshi: The Musical and Dil Ne Jise Apna Kaha and as his grandmother in the film Marigold.
Popular songs performed by Helen
Helen in 1977
"Mera Naam Chin Chin Chu" - Howrah Bridge (1958)
"Oyee Maa Oyee Maa Yeh Kya Ho Gaya" - Paras Mani (1963)
"Gham Chhod ke Manao Rang Relly" - Gumnaam (1965)
"O Haseena Zulfowali" - Teesri Manzil (1966)
"Aa Jaane Jaan" - Intaquam (1969)
"Piya Tu Ab To Aaja" - Caravan (1971)
"Ae Nujawan Hai Sab" - Apradh (1972)
"Aaj Ki Raat Koi Aane Ko Hai" - Anamika (1973)
"Mehbooba Mehbooba" - Sholay (1975)
"Mungda Main Gud Ki Dali" - Inkaar (1978)
"Yeh Mera Dil Pyaar Ka Diwana" - Don (1978)
Awards and honors
Filmfare Nomination as Best Supporting Actress for Gumnaam (1965)
Filmfare Nomination as Best Supporting Actress for Shikar (1968)
Filmfare Nomination as Best Supporting Actress for Elan (1971)
Filmfare Best Supporting Actress Award for Lahu Ke Do Rang (1979)
Filmfare Nomination as Best Supporting Actress for Khamoshi: The Musical (1996)
Filmfare Lifetime Achievement Award (1998)
Padma Shri, a civilian honour from the Indian government (2009)
Alif Laila (1952)
Miss Coca Cola (1955)
Changez Khan (1957)
Howrah Bridge (1958)
Twelve O'Clock (1958)
Hum Hindustani (1960)
Return of Mr. Superman
(Mr. Superman ki Wapsi) (1960)
Ek Phool Char Kaante (1960)
Dil Apna Aur Preet Parai (1960)
Baghdad Thirudan (1960) (Tamil film)
Gunga Jumna (1961)
Umar Qaid (1961)
Mr. India (1961 film)
Sampoorna Ramayana (1961)
Half Ticket (guest appearance)(1962)
China Town (1962)
Agent vinod (1963)
Aaya Toofan (1964)
Cha Cha Cha (1964)
Woh Kaun Thi? (1964)
Teesri Manzil (1966)
Dus Lakh (1966)
Yeh Raat Phir Na Aayegi (1966)
Night In London (1967)
CID 909 (1967)
Jewel Thief (1967)
Hare Kanch Ki Chooriyan (1967)
Ek Shriman Ek Shrimati (1969)
Bikhre Moti (1969)
Bhai Bahen (1969)
Aansoo Ban Gaye Phool (1969)
Pagla Kahin Ka (1970)
The Train (1970)
Tum Haseen Main Jawaan (1970)
Bombay Talkie (1970)
Yaar mera (1970)
Man Mandir (1971)
Sange Muzhangu (1972) Tamil Film
Mere Jeevan Saathi (1972)
Rakhi Aur Hathkadi (1972)
Dil Daulat Duniya (1972)
Shareef Badmash (1973)
Aaj Ki Taaza Khabar (1973)
Geeta Mera Naam (1974)
Kala Sona (1975)
Imaan Dharam (1977)
Khoon Pasina (1977)
Amar Akbar Anthony (1977)
Chala Murari Hero Banne (1977)
Swarg Narak (1978)
Lahu Ke Do Rang (1979)
The Great Gambler (1979)
Ram Balram (1980)
Bombay 405 miles (1980)
Chhupa chhupee (1981)
Bond 303 (1986)
Khamoshi: The Musical (1996)
Hum Dil De Chuke Sanam (1999)
Dil Ne Jise Apna Kahaa (2004)
Anjaane: The Unknown (2006)
Humko Deewana Kar Gaye (2006)
Dunno Y... Na Jaane Kyon (2010)
Jodi Breakers (2012)
Heroine (2012 film)
One Room Kitchen (2012 Marathi film)
^ "Helen celebrates 72nd birthday on Nov 21st". bbc.co.uk. 21 November 2011. Retrieved 1 April 2012.
^ Jerry Pinto (1 March 2006). Helen: The Life and Times of an H-Bomb. Penguin Books India. ISBN 978-0-14-303124-6. Retrieved 5 January 2013.
^ Mukherjee, Madhurita (3 February 2003). "Revamping Bollywood's sexy vamps". Times of India. Retrieved 16 November 2010.
^ "Helen". OutlookIndia. 17 April 2006. Retrieved 16 October 2011.
^ a b "I've no problems with the item no.: Helen Richardson : Star Talk". Santabanta.com. 18 July 2011. Retrieved 1 May 2012.
^ [://www.upperstall.com/people/helen "Helen Upperstall profile"]. Upperstall.com. 8 March 2012. Retrieved 25 Feb 2013.
^ 'Helen: The Life and the Times of an H-Bomb'[dead link]
^ Rediff Interview / Jerry Pinto 29 March 2006.
^ "Salim vows to marry Helen". picasaweb.google.com. 8 March 2012. Retrieved 8 March 2012.
^ "1st Filmfare Awards 1953". Deep750.googlepages.com. Retrieved 16 October 2011.Helen Richardson Khan is a Bollywood dancer and actress of Anglo-Burmese extraction, best known for playing vamps and vixens in Bollywood movies of the 1960s and 70s. She was famous for her performances in flamboyant dance sequences and cabaret numbers. The Bollywood playback singer Asha Bhosle frequently sang for Helen.
Helen was born on October 21, 1939 in Burma to an Anglo-Burmese/Anglo-Indian father and Burmese mother. A family friend, an actress known as Cukoo, helped her find jobs as a chorus dancer in the films Shabistan and Awaara (1951). Helen was soon working regularly, and was featured as a solo dancer in films like Alif Laila (1952) and Hoor-e-Arab (1953).
In 1958, she had her first major hit with her performance in the song "Mera Naam Chin Chin Chu" in O.P. Nayyar's hit film, Howrah Bridge. She was in great demand after this, performing as a cabaret dancer and vamp in film after film. She was known as the Cabaret Queen.
She was never a great success in the few films in which she played the heroine, but vamp roles and "item numbers" kept her busy through the 1960s. Her luck took a turn for the worse in the 1970s. Younger actresses were taking the vamp roles. Also, changing rules for Bollywood heroines made it possible for sexy young things in go-go boots to do the cabaret numbers and play the heroine. Helen fell into financial difficulties.
In 1973, "Helen, Queen of the Nautch Girls" was released. A 30-minute documentary film from Merchant Ivory films, the idea for the documentary came from Anthony Korner, an associate of Merchant Ivory's in the period, and now the publisher of Art Forum. It was directed and narrated by him, but the scenario was devised by Ivory. The subject of the film, which cost a modest $17,000 to make, is the most popular dancer in Bombay musical films -- and which presented Helen to the west as the undisputed star of Bollywood film, including her famous typewriter dance scene from "Bombay Talkie" the acclaimed Merchant Ivory film.
Writer Salim Khan came to her rescue. He helped her get good roles in some of the movies he was co-scripting with Javed Akhtar: Imaam Dharam, Don, and Dostana. This led to a demanding role in Mahesh Bhatt's film Lahu Ke Do Rang (1979), for which she won a Filmfare Best Supporting Actress award.
Soon afterwards, she married Salim Khan, as his second wife. The arrangement was said to have been tense at first, but Salim's children by his first wife (including current Bollywood actors Salman, Arbaaz, and Sohail Khan) are now said to be on good terms with their stepmother.Helen and Salim Khan have an adopted daughter named Arpita.
Helen retired from the screen for a number of years, but made a few "guest star" appearances in 1999 and 2000. In Mohabbatein, she plays the prim and proper head of a girls' school, who is pulled out onto a dance floor and surprises everyone with her lively dancing.
One surprising fact is that though Helen seemed to show a lot of skin in her cabaret routines, but was in fact often wearing a translucent or flesh-coloured fabric to give that effect.
The 1999 documentary film, "Desperately Seeking Helen" by Eisha Marjara is an autobiographical tale of an immigrant experience in Canada. "Helen" is a reference to the dancer Helen and by extension, India's dream factory, Bollywood.Helen was born in Burma to an Anglo Indian army officer and a Burmese nurse. Her father died during the Second World War. Her family migrated to India in 1942 as refugees in order to escape the Japanese invasion of Burma. Helen was introduced to Bollywood in 1953 by the famous dancer Cuckoo. She got her break in 1958 when she performed the song 'Mera Naam Chin Chin Choo' in the movie Howrah Bridge. Helen rarely got roles as the lead heroine in movies because of her Oriental looks. So, she opted dancing which proved to be her fortune. Throughout the 1960's and 1970's, she danced in more than 700 movies establishing herself as a prolific dancer. She was known for wearing different colors of wigs, contact lenses and skimpy outfits in her movies. In the late 1970's, her demand started diminishing because of her age along with the entry of younger dancers like Padma Khanna, Jayshree T, Bindu, Aruna Irani and Kalpana Iyer. In 1979, she won the best supporting actress award for her role as Vinod Khanna's Chinese wife in 'Lahu Ke Do Rang'. She officially retired from movies in 1983 after marrying screenwriter Salim Khan.