Irrfan Khan Was "Mess Of a Newbie" Freida Pinto's Role Model. Read Her Post

"For those who know of his talent, you know it cannot be replaced," wrote Freida

Irrfan Khan Was 'Mess Of a Newbie' Freida Pinto's Role Model. Read Her Post

Freida Pinto with Irrfan Khan, Dev Patel and Anil Kapoor at the SAG Awards. (courtesy freidapinto)

Highlights

  • Irrfan Khan died on Wednesday after a long battle with cancer
  • "I have this one beautiful and powerful memory of Irrfan," wrote Freida
  • "He stood grounded in reality on every world stage," added Freida
New Delhi:

Actress Freida Pinto's wistful post about her Slumdog Millionaire co-star Irrfan Khan sums up just what the actor meant to his younger co-stars. For many, like Freida who made her debut in the acclaimed 2008 film, Irrfan Khan set the standard, not just as an actor but as a colleague. "How lucky was I, a complete little mess of a newbie, to have him as a role model," wrote Frieda in her post, a sentiment that has been broadly echoed by other young actors in tributes to Mr Khan. Irrfan Khan, 53, died in a Mumbai hospital on Wednesday; he fought a long and losing battle with cancer.

Freida Pinto, who had never acted before Slumdog Millionaire, wrote, "This one has hit me hard. A VOID that can NEVER be filled because there was simply no one like Irrfan Khan. His grace and dignity along with his monumental talent as an artist, actor - a portrayer of humanity in all its shapes and forms made me not only have deep admiration for him but I instinctively wanted to emulate that grace in my career as well."

Frieda's post was accompanied by a picture of the cast - Irrfan Khan, herself, Dev Patel and Anil Kapoor - at the SAG Awards in 2009, the year Slumdog Millionaire swept awards season. She wrote: "There is a picture from the SAG awards( Irrfan, Dev, me and Anil) that sits on my book shelf in Mumbai and every time I look at it, I am taken down a memory lane of all things so beautiful and joyous about Slumdog Millionaire and the awards celebrations. And in all of it I have this one beautiful and powerful memory of Irrfan - Unfazed by the glitzy glamour, no matter which Hollywood icon walked past us. Quiet but not silent- his responses to every interviewer were so meaningful and never lacking humour. He was representing India with achingly high levels of grace and dignity. He stood grounded in reality on every world stage, every red carpet- Grateful and so collected! How lucky was I, a complete little mess of a newbie, to have him as a role model!"

Freida Pinto, who works primarily in international cinema, ended her post with a list of recommendations for those unfamiliar with Irrfan Khan's work: "For those who know of his talent, you know it cannot be replaced. For those who have not yet been introduced to his talent...Oh, do not deprive yourselves please! His repertoire has something for everyone. Warrior, Namesake, Piku, Maqbool, Life of Pi, The Lunchbox, Paan Singh Tomar and of course Slumdog Millionaire. Start somewhere, anywhere! I promise you...Irrfan Khan will be FOREVER carved in your memories too!"

Read Freida's post here:

This one has hit me hard. A VOID that can NEVER be filled because there was simply no one like Irrfan Khan. His grace and dignity along with his monumental talent as an artist, actor - a portrayer of humanity in all it's shapes and forms made me not only have deep admiration for him but I instinctively wanted to emulate that grace in my career as well. . . There is a picture from the SAG awards( Irrfan, Dev, me and Anil) that sits on my book shelf in Mumbai and everytime I look at it, I am taken down a memory lane of all things so beautiful and joyous about Slumdog Millionaire and the awards celebrations. And in all of it I have this one beautiful and powerful memory of Irrfan - Unfazed by the glitzy glamour, no matter which Hollywood icon walked past us. Quiet but not silent- his responses to every interviewer were so meaningful and never lacking humour. He was representing India with achingly high levels of grace and dignity. He stood grounded in reality on every world stage, every red carpet- Grateful and so collected! How lucky was I, a complete little mess of a newbie, to have him as a role model! . . For those who know of his talent, you know it cannot be replaced. For those who have not yet been introduced to his talent...Oh, do not deprive yourselves please! His repertoire has something for everyone. Warrior, Namesake, Piku, Maqbool, Life of Pi, The Lunchbox, Paan Singh Tomar and ofcourse Slumdog Millionaire. Start somewhere, anywhere! I promise you...Irrfan Khan will be FOREVER carved in your memories too!

A post shared by Freida Pinto (@freidapinto) on

Slumdog Millionaire, directed by Danny Boyle, was a gateway into Hollywood for Freida, 35. Since her breakout, she has appeared both in acclaimed offerings such as Miral and Desert Dancer and commercial fare like Rise Of The Planet Of The Apes and Immortals. She stars in the new Netflix film Love Wedding Repeat.

Speaking to BBC, Danny Boyle revealed that he cast Irrfan Khan in a relatively minor role in Slumdog Millionaire after being advised by a studio executive to "just get that guy." He did and the rest was Oscar history - Mr Boyle told BBC that Irrfan Khan's presence in the film had a large part to play in its journey to award show glory.