Ajay Devgan in Zakhm, 1998
Ajay Devgan is one of those actors who is said to be an artist who speaks with his eyes. Not many actors are blessed with such a talent. Ajay Devgan who started his career as a Action Hero got the status of a complete actor after his portrayal of a mature and realistic character in the 1998 Hindi movie, Zakhm. In the movie, he plays a son who in spite of communal indifference fulfills his mother’s wish to be buried according to Muslim rituals. The movie won Ajay his first National Film Award for Best Actor.
Paresh Rawal in Hera Pheri, 2000
Paresh Rawal is one of the few actors in Bollywood who has enacted different types of character throughout his career. However, his best performance can be seen in the 2000 Comedy feature film, Hera Pheri where he played a Marathi Manus brilliantly giving us a memorable character of Babu Bhaiya alongside Akshay Kumar and Sunil Shetty in pivotal roles. His character in the movie helped him reach new heights of comedy and also eventually won him the Filmfare Award for Best Comedian that year. Hera Pheri is one of the best Cult Comedy Film ever.
Shahrukh Khan in Swades, 2004
In spite of being a heartthrob of many fans and almost reigning Bollywood over a decade as the King Khan of Bollywood, Shahrukh Khan was yet not able to win the critics as a complete actor. But it all changed after the 2004 Indian Drama film, Swades which was written, produced and directed by Ashutosh Gowariker. Was it the positive theme of the movie or its stillness, the role of Mohan Bhargava is still considered as the best performance by the Badshah Khan.
Hrithik Roshan in Lakshya, 2004
At the time labelled as one-film wonder, Hrithik Roshan raised so many expectations after his debut film broke all the records of earlier movies. Although most of his movies failed after his debut film, Kaho Na Pyar Hai, he got many praises for great acting in movies like Mission Kashmir and Fiza. However, his best performance came out in the 2004 Indian war drama film, Lakshya directed by Farhan Akhtar. The performance is the best till date because of the different shades of his character and the transition from a lazy brat with no ambition in life to a disciplined military officer who goes on to play a prominent role in the Kargil War in the movie.
Kareena Kapoor in Jab We Met, 2007
In Bollywood, the credit for the overall success of the movie is most often given to Hero of the movie while the Heroine is always considered to be the eye candy. However, Jab We Met changed the tradition as the success of this romantic love story is credited to Geet played by Kareena Kapoor. This is by far the best performance by Kareena Kapoor who otherwise was known just for her glamorous looks but after Jab We Met, she won praises and accolades from many critics and fans who now considers her as a complete actor.
Priyanka Chopra in Fashion, 2008
If Jab We Met did it for Kareena Kapoor, the 2008 Madhur Bhandarkar movie, Fashion became a breakthrough point in Priyanka Chopra’s career earning her many praises and awards that year. Her portrayal of a small town girl who eventually becomes a supermodel of the industry is justified beautifully with brilliant performance. Her role of aspiring model, Meghna Mathur also won her Best Actress Awards at 54th Filmfare Awards and 56th National Film Awards.