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How Jayshree Gadkar specialised in mythological films — birth anniversary special


On the late actress' 75th birth anniversary today (21 February), let's take a look at nine mythological films she acted in.

Keyur Seta

Jayshree Gadkar was a versatile actress in both Hindi and Marathi cinema. Her career spanned from the mid-1950s to late 1990s where she played a wide range of characters. Looking at her filmography, what strikes you is that she acted in a large number of mythological films.

On her 75th birth anniversary, here are nine important mythological films that she acted in. 

Mata Vaishno Devi (1971)

Gadkar played the titular role of Mata Vaishno Devi in this film. It follows the story of Vaishno Devi and how she killed the evil Bhairavnath who was after her life. After he begs for forgiveness, she not only obliged, but also gave him a boon that people would worship him after her at the site of the Vaishno Devi temple at Katra in Jammu and Kashmir. 

Bhagwan Parshuram (1970)

Babubhai Mistri’s film was based on lord Parshuram who was the avatar of lord Vishnu. After Parshuram, lord Vishnu took birth as Lord Rama. In Bhagwan Parshuram, Gadkar played the role of Gayatri in it. 

Subhadraharan (1963)

In the epic Mahabharata, there is an incident of Krishna urging Arjuna to abduct his sister Subhadra and elope with her. Datta Dharmadhikari’s Marathi movie Subhadra Haran is based on this story where Gadkar plays Subhadra. 

Mahima Shri Ram alias Sati Bindumati (1981)

Now it was Gadkar’s turn to play Sati Bindumati in director Satish Kumar’s film of the same name. The film also starred well-known yesteryear actor Jeevan.

Hari Darshan (1972)

This was yet another mythological film by director Chandrakant. Hari Darshan tells the story of Prahlad and it also shows different avatars of Lord Vishnu. Gadkar is seen in the role of goddess Lakshmi. 

Shree Krishnarjun Yuddh (1971) 

If you go by the title, the film looks at the mythological incident where a war could take place between Lord Krishna and his best devotee and friend Arjun. Gadkar plays Subhadra, Arjun’s wife who convinces her husband to go against Krishna. This is the second time she played Subhadra after the Marathi film, Subhadraharan (1963). 

Balak Dhruv (1974)

The film tells the mythological story of the child Dhruv, played by Master Satyajeet, who is forced by circumstances to leave home and invokes Lord Narayana. The role of Dhruv’s mother Suniti is played by Gadkar. 

Kisan Aur Bhagwan (1974) 

The film tells the story of a farmer Dhanna, played by Dara Singh, who tries invoking Lord Vishnu as he is struggling to till his piece of land. Kisan Aur Bhagwan has Gadkar playing Devi Maa Lakshmi, while Abhi Bhattacharya plays Lord Vishnu. 

Shravan Kumar (1984)

The film centres around the tale of Shravan who devotedly takes care of his blind parents. He mistakenly gets killed by King Dashrath, who is cursed by Shravan’s parents. Sachin Pilgaonkar played the titular role while Gadkar played Mata Annapurna.