You are here

Bollywood Baddies

Bollywood Baddies
Villains, Vamps and Henchmen in Hindi Cinema

First Edition
  • Tapan K. Ghosh - former head, Department of English, Rabindra Bharati University, Kolkata
Critical Acclaim

January 2013 | 232 pages | SAGE India
Bollywood Baddies is the first-of-its-kind book-length narrative of villainy in Hindi films. It discusses villains, vamps, and henchmen of Bollywood cinema, and also the actors who essayed such characters over the decades. The author discusses not just villains but also the evaluation of villainous characters vis-à-vis sociopolitical conditions in the country.

The narrative begins with Ashok Kumar's negative role in Kismet as early as 1943, and goes up to the Agneepath remake (2012), where Sanjay Dutt plays Kancha Cheena, earlier essayed by Danny Denzongpa in the original. In between, it discusses all major villains, from Lala Sukhiram (Mother India) to Gabbar (Sholay) to "Lion" Ajit (Kalicharan) to Mogambo (Mr. India), and many others. While keeping villains in the focus, it also discusses popular henchmen and vamps, like M B Shetty, Sharat Saxena, Nadira, Bindu, Helen, among others, to understand the dimension of the villains' empire. After all, it's our villains who make our protagonist the hero we all admire.

An engrossing read, this book is for every film buff.



Who are These Villains?

The Fifties and Sixties

Sholay and the Seventies

The Eighties and After

That Other Self: The Vamps

The Empire of Evil: Villains' Henchmen

Those Dreadful Men

The Unforgettable Baddies

The End!

A comprehensive account of the overlooked dimensions of villainy in Indian Cinema. The book crafts an ode to the talented actors who set new trends with their on-screen wickedness, the menacing looks, the evil grins and the venomous one liners...the book offers a refreshing insight...the book is extensively researched, well organised and, a much-needed contribution to the ongoing scholarship in the field of film, media and cultural studies.
The Tribune

An interesting book devoted entirely to bollywood’s villain and vamps, magnificently mean personalities...Tapan K. Ghosh had the delightful task of putting together this rogues’ gallery of Hindi cinema, and has done a thorough job of going over the list of baddies from the early days right upto Agneepath...Ghosh’s research cannot be faulted and he scores when he places the villains of each period within their proper socio-political framework.
Hindustan Times

One of the most satisfying reads on Hindi cinema in a long time.... if you enjoy Hindi films, have grown up watching them and enjoy reading a good piece of work about them, this book is for you.

The Business Standard, 16 May 2013

[The book] minutely documents the evils that have garnered so much attention in the film industry.... Ghosh’s book convincingly bears the notion of detailed planning...this is one of the very few good attempts to immortalise those bad boys who have done good to Indian cinema.

The Statesman, 31 March 2013

This passionately written history of screen villainy could inspire further research opening up the floor for a debate on the meaningful role of evil in popular hindi cinema as well in the academic discourse...both an informative and foremost entertaining read...presents many ingenious analytical details and smaller these along with a historical outline...a compact read but well-laid table of cinematic moments to feast on.... With his passionate writing style Tapan K Ghosh refreshes our memory of many great moments of screen villainy and rightfully celebrates bollywood’s baddies as agents of immense cinematic pleasure.

South Asia Multidisciplinary Academic Journal

Tapan K. Ghosh

Tapan K Ghosh was a professor in Department of English, Rabindra Bharati University, Kolkata. After completing his term as Head of the Department, he took voluntary retirement and turned to creative writing. His stories have since then been published in the US and UK journals, one of them earning a place among the top-10 stories in a competitive event held in England, and later published in the anthology The Bus Stop Scheherazade and Other Stories. Dr Ghosh’s story “Border” also found a place among the top-12 stories in Labyrinth Competition of London in February 2005, impressing the judges for its “confident storytelling and well-measured... More About Author

Purchasing options

Please select a format:

ISBN: 9788132110972