13 Popular Lead Actors Who Had Multiple Releases In Their Debut Year

13 Popular Lead Actors Who Had Multiple Releases In Their Debut Year View All Articles

Posted On: 14 Jun 2021 | Last Updated: 30 Aug 2021


Every aspiring actor or actress who wishes to debut in Bollywood wants to see himself or herself on the big screen and receive applause for his or her performances. Getting a break in movies for many strugglers continues to remain a dream while some get the perfect launchpad for being star kids while some settle down for any role that comes their way. Signing a movie and getting a launchpad by itself is considered a big deal in Bollywood but some actors not just got lucky by getting their first break as leads but got luckier by signing multiple films which released one after the other in the same year of their debut. Yes, this can be termed rare but it has happened over the years in Bollywood as we came across 12 such popular male lead actors who were fortunate enough to get a minimum of three or more releases in their respective year of debuts.


1. Raj Babbar – Debuted in 1980 with 7 Releases

Actor Raj Babbar who started as a theatre actor graduated to the big screen by appearing in a small role in the first version of Amrit Nahata’s controversial 1977 movie Kissaa Kursee Kaa which was later destroyed. So, technically speaking the actor made his screen debut in 1980 in Vijay Sadanah’s family drama Sau Din Saas Ke which co-starred Reena Roy, Asha Parekh and Lalita Pawar. The success of the film was followed by a string of well-known releases the same year which included Saajan Mere Main Saajan Ki co-starring Ashok Kumar, Dina Pathak, Raj Kiran and Rameshwari. This was quickly followed by the release of Nazrana Pyar Ka, B.R. Chopra’s Insaf Ka Tarazu along with Zeenat Aman, Deepak Parashar and Padmini Kolhapure, Jazbaat opposite Zarina Wahab, Aap To Aise Na The with Ranjeeta and Deepak Parashar and Prakash Mehra’s Jwalamukhi which released at the fag-end of 1980.

Raj Babbar

2. Shammi Kapoor – Debuted in 1953 with 6 Releases

Prithviraj Kapoor’s son and younger brother of Raj Kapoor, Shammi Kapoor didn’t have to struggle to sign his first film at the young age of 21. Belonging to the Kapoor clan, Shammi was fortunate enough to have six releases in 1953 which was the year of his acting debut. His first release was Mahesh Kaul’s Jeewan Jyoti opposite Chand Usmani who was also making her screen debut, this was followed by P.N. Arora’s romantic comedy-drama Rail Ka Dibba opposite Madhubala who was already an established star. Then released Lekhraj Bhakri’s Thokar opposite Shyama, which was followed by Aspi Irani’s romantic costume drama Gul Sanobar opposite Shyama again. His fifth release in the same year was K. Amarnath’s love saga Laila Majnu co-starring Nutan, and finally Balwant Bhatt’s mystery drama Khoj. Unfortunately, all six releases that year bombed at the box-office while Shammi Kapoor’s bad-run continued till 1957 with another 13 flops till Nasir Hussain’s Tumsa Nahin Dekha happened.

Shammi Kapoor

3. Govinda - Debuted in 1986 with 5 Releases

Despite coming from a filmy family, Govinda never had it easy to get his first break in Bollywood. The son of yesteryear actors Arun Kumar Ahuja and Narmada Ahuja, Govinda had initially signed his uncle Anand’s film Tan-Bandan starring Khushboo which took a while to release. In the meantime, he got to work in director Esmayeel Shroff’s Love 86 and Shibu Mitra’s Ilzaam which released back-to-back in the month of February 1986. Both films hit the bullseye at the box-office which made him an overnight dancing sensation. The success of both these films was followed by Tan-Badan, T. Ramarao’s Sadaa Suhagan and Raveekant Nagaich’s Duty opposite Anuradha Patel. Sadaa Suhagan performed well while Tan-Badan and Duty were box-office duds. Many don’t know that Devi Dutt’s Andaz Pyaar Ka opposite Neelam could have been Govinda’s sixth release in 1986 but due to some reasons the film never got released.

Govinda

4. Shah Rukh Khan - Debuted in 1992 with 4 Releases

Currently, still rated among the top 10 Bollywood lead actors, many may not recollect but Shah Rukh Khan started his acting career from the small screen and later graduated to the big screen in no time. Though the first film that he signed was director Aziz Mirza’s Raju Ban Gaya Gentleman but it was Raj Kanwar’s Deewana which was released first in theaters in 1992 that also starred Rishi Kapoor and Divya Bharti. The success of Deewana was followed by Rajiv Mehra’s Chamatkar also starring Urmila Matondkar, Naseeruddin Shah and Shammi Kapoor and then came Raju Ban Gaya Gentleman opposite Juhi Chawla and finally, Hema Malini’s multi-starrer directorial debut Dil Aashna Hai, co-starring Divya Bharti, Jeetendra, Sonu Walia, Dimple Kapadia, Mithun Chakraborty, and Kabir Bedi. The popularity of all these films in 1992 announced SRK’s arrival at the box-office and a glimpse of what to expect from him in the coming years.

Shah Rukh Khan

5. Ashok Kumar – (Debuted in 1936 with 3 Releases)

Legendary actor Ashok Kumar probably was the first one to join the elite club of ‘Actors who had three or more releases in their year of debut’. Though he started as a laboratory assistant at Bombay Talkies in the 1930s, was later noticed by top actress Devika Rani who got him to act opposite self in Franz Osten’s Achhut Kanya in 1936 which was produced by Himanshu Rai’s Bombay Talkies. The runaway success of Achhut Kanya at the box-office which dealt with the caste system set the tone for the pair of Ashok Kumar and Devika Rani who also had another two releases in the same year which were Janmabhoomi and Jeevan Naiya. The success of these three films was followed by Nirmala (1938), Vachan (1938), Izzat (1937), Savitri (1937) and Anjaan (1941). Ashok Kumar went on to do over 330 films in his six-and-a-half-decade-long career.

Ashok Kumar

6. Saif Ali Khan - Debuted in 1993 with 3 Releases

Being former Indian cricket captain Mansoor Ali Khan Pataudi and actress Sharmila Tagore’s son definitely was an advantage for Saif Ali Khan who was trying to get into Bollywood. His sudden marriage to actress Amrita Singh in 1991 made headlines after which he signed Rahul Rawail’s Bekhudi opposite Kajol but unfortunately got dropped for reasons best known to him. In 1992 he got to sign three films which released in 1993 starting with Yash Chopra’s multi-starrer Parampara which also starred Sunil Dutt, Aamir Khan, Vinod Khanna, Ashwini Bhave, Ramya Krishnan, Neelam, Raveena Tandon and Anupam Kher, followed by Umesh Mehra’s Aashik Aawara opposite Mamta Kulkarni and Deepak Shivdasani’s Pehchaan also starring Sunil Shetty, Madhoo and Shilpa Shirodkar.

Saif Ali Khan

7. Sanjay Kapoor – Debuted in 1995 with 3 Releases

Sanjay Kapoor wasn’t as successful compared to his actor brother Anil Kapoor despite getting the perfect launchpad from his producer father Surendra Kapoor and elder brother Boney Kapoor in Prem. Sanjay Kapoor was launched with much fanfare in Satish Kaushik’s Prem in 1991 but took a while to reach the theatres in 1995. Though Prem didn’t fare well at the box-office, the release of Indra Kumar’s Raja in the following month managed to salvage his position. Raja did good business at the ticket windows but was hailed as a Madhuri Dixit show. The same year also saw the release of Raj Kanwar’s romantic action drama Kartavya in September starring Sanjay Kapoor and Juhi Chawla who came in as a replacement after Divya Bharti’s untimely death in 1993.

Sanjay Kapoor

8. Akshaye Khanna - Debuted in 1997 with 3 Releases

Mention about Bollywood actors multiple releases in debut year, actor Vinod Khanna turned producer with Himalay Putra to launch his younger son Akshaye Khanna along with newcomers Anjala Zaveri and Shazia Malik. Himalay Putra was directed by Pankaj Parashar and took a while to become Akshaye’s first release in 1997. The delay of Himalay Putra made Akshaye sign up and complete J.P. Dutta’s multi-starrer war-classic Border and Reema Rakesh Nath’s love-triangle Mohabbat starring Madhuri Dixit and Sanjay Kapoor. Himalay Putra and Mohabbat bombed at the box-office while Border as we all know turned out to be a huge success. With these three films, Akshaye proved that he’s here to stay.

Akshaye Khanna

9. Hrithik Roshan - Debuted in 2000 with 3 Releases

Actor – Director Rakesh Roshan’s son Hrithik Roshan was supremely talented which was evident in his initial films like Aasha, Aap Ke Deewane, Aas Paas and Bhagwaan Dada, where he appeared as a child artiste. After assisting his father Rakesh Roshan in films like Karan Arjun and Koyla was launched as the main lead in Kaho Naa… Pyaar Hai along with Amisha Patel in 2000 that wrote history at the box-office. Eight months later, Hrithik was seen playing on-screen sibling to Karisma Kapoor in Khalid Mohammad’s Fiza and thereafter son to Sanjay Dutt in Vidhu Vinod Chopra’s multi-starrer action-thriller Mission Kashmir. Fiza and Mission Kashmir earned profits at the ticket windows but weren’t that successful compared to KNPH in the year 2000.

Hrithik Roshan

10. Abhishek Bachchan – Debuted in 2000 with 3 Releases

Amitabh Bachchan and Jaya Bachchan’s son Abhishek Bachchan also appear in the list of Bollywood actors who had multiple releases in his debut year. Abhishek initially had to make his acting debut in J.P. Dutta’s Aakhri Moghul which got shelved after canning a few reels. To overcome the Hrithik Roshan wave in 2000 which had already gripped the nation, something extraordinary was expected from Abhishek Bachchan. J.P. Dutta’s Refugee which was released in June 2000 was the debut of Abhishek Bachchan along with Kareena Kapoor. The film performed averagely well at the box-office and so did his subsequent films – A. Muthu’s Tera Jadoo Chal Gayaa opposite Kirti Reddy and Raj Kanwar’s Dhaai Akshar Prem Ke opposite Aishwarya Rai. But the year 2000 will always be remembered for the Hrithik mania.

Abhishek Bachchan

11. Vivek Oberoi - Debuted in 2002 with 3 Releases

Suresh Oberoi’s son Vivek Oberoi couldn’t have asked for a better launchpad than playing one of the leads in Ram Gopal Varma’s action-thriller Company which also starred Ajay Devgn, Manisha Koirala, Antara Mali and Mohanlal. RGV, who was then one of Bollywood’s top filmmakers signed up Vivek for he fit the role of Chandu perfectly in the film based on Mumbai’s underworld saga. The success of Company in 2002 was followed by Rajat Mukherjee’s psychological thriller drama Road also starring Manoj Bajpayee and Antara Mali. December 2002 saw Vivek in his third film - Saathiya opposite Rani Mukerji which was directed by Shaad Ali and was a remake of Mani Ratnam’s Tamil hit film Alaipayuthey. Road and Saathiya weren’t as successful as Company but these three releases proved Vivek’s mettle as an actor.

Vivek Oberoi

12. Armaan Kohli – Debuted in 1992 with 3 Releases

Director – Producer Rajkumar Kohli and actress Nishi Kohli’s son Armaan Kohli didn’t have to struggle hard to make his debut as an actor. Though he had already appeared as a child artist in his father Rajkumar Kohli’s action drama’s - Badle Ki Aag (1982), Naukar Biwi Ka (1983) and Raaj Tilak (1984), he was launched as the main lead later in his father’s film Virodhi (1992) which also starred Harsha Mehra, Dharmendra, Sunil Dutt, Anita Raaj and Prem Chopra. While Virodhi performed below average at the box-office, his other two releases in the same year namely, Ramesh Modi’s Anaam opposite Ayesha Jhulka, and Jagdish Sharma’s Dushman Zamana opposite the late Divya Bharti also flopped. Despite having a great start to his acting career with three releases in a year, Armaan Kohli unfortunately, could never make it big.

Armaan Kohli

13. Vinod Mehra - Debuted in 1971 with 3 Releases

Vinod Mehra, the late actor and director who made his acting debut as a child artiste in movies like Adil-E-Jahangir (1955), Sharada (1957), Raagini (1958), and Bewaqoof (1960), had made his debut as an adult in Ek Thi Reeta opposite Tanuja which were followed by Parde Ke Peechey opposite Yogeeta Bali and Elaan opposite Rekha in the same year. Though it is believed that Aahat - Ek Ajeeb Kahani opposite Jaya Bhaduri also was set to release the same year but due to some reason the film got delayed and was released in 1974. There could’ve been two more releases for him in 1971 namely - Lal Patthar and Amar Prem but they got released in early 1972.

Vinod Mehra