Mithun Chakraborty was born in Kolkata, West Bengal to a Bengali Hindu family. He was educated at the renowned Scottish Church College in Kolkata, from where he earned his graduate degree in chemistry (BSc). He was initially associated with naxalities in West Bengal, which he latter left and joined Mumbai films. For rest of his life, his family had continuous threat from naxalities. After that he attended and graduated from the Film and Television Institute of India in Pune.
Mithun Chakraborty was a staunch Naxalite before entering the film industry, but tragedy struck his family when his only brother got accidentally electrocuted and killed in a freak accident. He returned to his family and left the Naxalite fold, even though doing so posed a grave risk to his own life.
Mithun Chakraborty made his film debut in the 1976 Mrinal Sen directed film Mrigaya for which he won the coveted National Film Award for Best Actor. After his debut he played some supporting roles in films such as Do Anjaane (1976) and Phool Khile Hain Gulshan Gulshan (1977) which did not gain him any recognition. He shot into prominence in the late 1970s with the low budget Ravikant Nagaich directed spy film Surakshaa (1979) and the early 1980s with leading roles in hit films such as Hum Paanch (1980) and Wardaat (1981) (a sequel to Surakshaa).
His breakthrough role finally came in the musical drama Disco Dancer (1982) which was a huge success and remains a cult favorite to this day. This film and other musical films such as Kasam Paida Karne Wale Ki (1984) and Dance Dance (1987) showcased him as a talented dancer. Chakraborty starred in a number of successful romantic and family dramas during the 1980s, such as Mujhe Insaaf Chahiye (1983), Pyaar Jhukta Nahin (1985), Swarg Se Sunder (1986), and Pyaar Ka Mandir (1988). These films remain his most commercially successful films to date. He was widely recognized as an action hero in hit films like Wanted (1983), Boxer (1984), Jagir (1984), Jaal (1986), Watan Ke Rakhwale (1987) Commando (1988), Waqt Ki Awaaz (1988), Guru (1989), Mujrim (1989) and Dushman (1990). During the mid 1980s he was regarded as a rival to Amitabh Bachchan, as both frequently played an angry young protagonist at odds with the ills of society and corruption. Chakraborty worked with some of the biggest actresses of his time and Bollywood in general, including Zeenat Aman, Padmini Kolhapure, Rati Agnihotri, Rekha, Sridevi and Madhuri Dixit.
Chakraborty achieved not only commercial success but also tremendous critical acclaim. His performances in Mrigaya, Tahader Katha, Swami Vivekananda, Kalpurush and Titli were widely appreciated and won him National Film Awards and nominations. He won two Filmfare awards: The Filmfare Best Supporting Actor Award for his performance in the 1990 film Agneepath, and the Filmfare Best Villain Award for his performance in Jallad. He was praised for his performances in films including Pyaar Ka Mandir (1988) and Mujrim (1989). In the mid '90s he took a break from Mumbai and relocated to Ooty where he set up his hotel business under 'Monarch' brand name. He operates hotels under 'Monarch' brand name in Mudhumalai, Ooty in Tamil Nadu and in Darjeeling and Kolkata in West Bengal. He was considered a "One Man Industry" for a decade as he starred in over 80 films over ten years, while shifting his focus from mainstream Hindi cinema and to low-budget B-grade movies. These movies were mainly produced to cater to the audiences of Madhya Pradesh and Bengal, where Chakraborty has a cult-following even today. He paid more tax than anyone else in the country, from 1994 to 1999.
Chakraborty made a comeback to the mainstream Hindi film industry in 2005 with the film Elaan, although it was not a success. After a few supporting roles in films such as Lucky: No Time for Love (2005), he was acclaimed for his performance in Kalpana Lazmi's Chingari (2005). In 2007 he starred in Mani Ratnam's hit film Guru for which he received much critical praise. Guru was the second commercially successful film after Lucky: No Time for Love since his comeback. Mithun Chakraborty had 9 releases in 2008 including Bengali and Bhojpuri films. His movie Heroes was an above average box office success, and his comic performance was praised in Don Muthu Swami. In 2009, his movie Zor Lagaa Ke...Haiya! won multiple International awards. Mithunda's latest releases Soham Shah directed Luck with Sunjay Dutt took a decent opening and settled as Average earner.Chal Chalein was appreciated by critics for its bold theme. His latest release Baabarr has done well in northern Single screens. His Phir Kabhi with Dimple Kapadia had a very successful premiere through direct to home (DTH) in September 2009 and won as many as six awards in as many categories at the Los Angeles Reel Awards-2009. His upcoming films are Zindagi Tere Naam, plus films like ,Raakh, and Kannada flick Manikya. Mithunda's latest release Veer, along with Salman Khan, though a commercial failure, won him rave reviews.
Parallel to his Bollywood career, Mithun Chakraborty had chalked up an array of successful and not-so-successful films in his native Bengali, as well as in realistic or arthouse movies, where his trained acting has resulted in him getting quite a few awards and accolades. Troyee, made in 1982 with Debashree Roy and Anil Chatterjee, was a big success. After the move to Bombay, and his popularity as a star in mainstream Hindi movies, there was a lull in Mithun's appearances in mainstream Bengali movies, but he continued to appear in arthouse movies like eminent director Buddhadeb Dasgupta's Tahader Katha in 1992 which got him the second National Award in 1993. A third National Award followed in 1995, this time for the Best Supporting Actor , for his awesome portrayal of Ramakrishna Paramhansa, in G V Iyer's Swami Vivekananda. He also got accolades for Goutam Ghose's Gudia in 1999. He also appeared in Rituparno Ghosh's critically and commercially appreciated Titli in 2002, starring with the real-life mother-daughter pair of Aparna Sen and Konkona Sen Sharma. Recently, the Fatakeshto series of popular entertainers have been widely successful in West Bengal. In 2008, he collaborated again with Dasgupta for the critically acclaimed Kaalpurush, with Rahul Bose and Sameera Reddy.
Mithun Chakraborty is the Grand Judge of the show Dance India Dance and Dance Bangla Dance on Zee TV.
Mithun Chakraborty has also been involved in promotion of Football in his native Bengal. The Bengal Football Academy is his brainchild and Mithun raised the necessary funds for the launch of this academy. Mithun Chakraborty was also the co-owner of Royal Bengal Tigers, a cricket team of the Indian Cricket League.
Mithun Chakraborty is married to former Indian actress Yogita Bali and has four children, three sons and one adopted daughter. The eldest son, Mimoh Chakraborty is an actor in Bollywood, who made his debut in the 2008 film Jimmy, His second son, Rimoh Chakraborty played Mithun's younger version the film Phir Kabhi. And Mithun's other two children Namashi Chakraborty and Dishani Chakraborty are still into their studies. Numerous sources claim that Mithun Chakraborty had a relationship with actress Sridevi from 1986 to 1987, and that Sridevi ended the relationship when she found out that he had not divorced his first wife, Yogita Bali. Mithun Chakraborty and Sridevi were believed to have been secretly married and that the union was later annulled.
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