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Amitabh Bachhan is, undoubtedly, the king of Indian commercial Hindi cinema. His first appearance was in the movie Saat Hindustani (1969). He showed his mark in the Hindi film world with Zanjeer (1975), which set the trend for the
'Angry Young Man' action roles in Hindi films. With his tall and lean looks, Amitabh became emblematic of the new kind of action hero. This continued in his other films like Deewar, Muqaddar Ka Sikander, Hera Pheri, Shakti, Lawaris and others. Altogether, Amitabh Bachhan has appeared in over 80 films, many of them, particularly those from the mid-1970s to the mid-1980s, were resounding successes. So total was Amitabh's dominance of the movie scene in the 1970s and 19802 that the late French director Francois Truffaut called him a "one-man industry".
Amitabh tried his hand at politics, being closely associated with the Gandhi family, and was elected to the parliament with a huge majority from the Allahabad constituency. He soon became disenchanted with politics and gave up his seat in parliament, vowing never to be involved in politics again.
Some years ago, Amitabh attempted a return to the commercial cinema but failed to recast his characteristic impact on the film viewers. His recent films like Suryavansham, Major Sahab and Kohram generated mixed and rather subdued reactions from the audience. Some years ago Amitabh launched an entertainment company called Amitabh Bachchan Corporation Limited (ABCL), which was the prime sponsor of the Miss Universe Contest held in Bangalore in 1996.
Some of his other well-know films are Anand (1970), Mili, Namak Haram, Kabhie Kabhie, Silsila, Sholay (1975), Amar Akbar Anthony (1977), Trishul (1978), Dostana, Coolie, Shaan, Shakti, Agneepath (1990), Aaj Ka Arjun and Hum (1991). In mid-2000 Amitabh made a foray into the small screen by hosting a TV quiz show called Kaun Banega Crorepati? Amitabh achieved another distinction when he was selected as the only actor from the Bollywood whose wax model would be kept in the famous Madame Tussaud's museum in London.