Bollywood's missing stars: Fardeen Khan

Blessed with such good looks and a powerful family name, it was expected of Fardeen Khan to emulate the success of his famous father Feroz Khan. But Fardeen’s fame petered out rather fast; despite having done some impressive roles, he failed to make a lasting impression on Bollywood audience, and eventually fell off the showbiz radar.

In 1998, at the age of 24, Fardeen made his Bollywood debut with Prem Aggan, written and directed by his father. Although he won the Filmfare Award for Best Male Debut, the film didn’t fare well at the box office.

Two years later, came Jungle by Ram Gopal Varma, and that’s how Fardeen got his much-awaited big break. It was a year which marked the acting debut of two other star kids — Hrithik Roshan and Abhishek Bachchan. Hrithik got catapulted to fame with his performance in Kaho Naa…Pyaar Hai.

While Fardeen wasn’t fortunate enough to experience success like that of Hrithik, his performance in movies like Pyaar Tune Kya Kiya (2001), a dark story that narrates the tale of an obsessive lover, found appreciation.

In 2001, Fardeen was arrested under the Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substance Act, after being caught buying cocaine from a drug dealer in Mumbai. Being a first-time offender, the court let him off the hook after he promised to undergo de-addiction programme voluntarily. The incident, however, tarnished the image of the young actor.

Fardeen Khan escorted to the judge’s residence for remand in Mumbai on May 6, 2001. Khan was arrested under the Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substance Act,for buying cocaine from a dealer. / AFP PHOTO
Fardeen Khan escorted to the judge’s residence for remand in Mumbai on May 6, 2001. Khan was arrested under the Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substance Act,for buying cocaine from a dealer. / AFP PHOTO

In the decade that followed, Fardeen remained active in the industry, but only a few of his movies reaped profits. In the personal front as well, things weren’t quite rosy for the actor; his father was diagnosed with cancer, and later succumbed to the disease in 2009. During those days, Fardeen had put on weight, which subjected him to harsh media censure.

After neglecting his career for long, Fardeen eventually managed to shed those extra pounds, and opened up about the emotional trauma he had been going through during his father’s treatment time and coping with the latter’s absence.

Fardeen has remained more or less away from the limelight after taking a break from his career. But last year, his name was trending on social media for all the wrong reasons. The actor got brutally trolled for his weight gain. Some of the tweets read: “From chocolate boy to rasgulla boy”; “Anant Ambani’s loss is Fardeen’s gain”, etc.

Fardeen took to Facebook to explain his side.

“If you have had enough fun please take the time to look at your own reflection. If trolling is what makes you feel better about yourself, you have to seriously think about you future prospects. My best wishes,” he wrote.

Fardeen’s retort was welcomed by many, and they extended support to the actor, chiding body shaming on social media.

The actor who loves to keep a low-profile was in news last week, when he hosted a star-studded pre-wedding bash in honour of his friends Renu Chainani and Aditya Garware, in Mumbai. He sported long hair and grey stubble, as he welcomed his friends from the Bollywood fraternity. Check out the photos.