Born in Pune to a Maharashtrian politician Shivajirao Patil and a social worker mother, Patil graduated from the Film and Television Institute of India in Pune and made her film debut with Shyam Benegal's 'Charandas Chor' (1975). She died in 1986 at the age of 31 due to childbirth complications. Lets take a look at top 7 roles of her filmy career.

1. Bhumika (1977):  The role that established 22-year-old Smita Patil as an actress of extraordinary merit. It remains, arguably, her best work. Director Shyam Benegal scaled this film on a creatively ambitiously level. In Bhumika, she played the role of a well known Marathi stage and screen actress of 1940's Hansa Wadkar, who lived an unusual life in the search of love and identity. Smita portrayed both the roles amazingly. She looked very attractive in her simple cotton saris. She won her first National Film Award (Best Actress) for the Movie. Naseeruddin Shah, Amol Palekar, Amrish Puri and Anant Nag played the pivots around whom the life of the protagonist (played by Smita) revolved.



2. Chakra (1981): This film won Smita Patil yet another National Award for best actress after Bhumika. Chakra, a surprise box office success, was a strident wake up call, rousing us to the seemingly inescapable 'chakra' of fate that governs the lives of millions of Mumbai slumdwellers.



3. Aakrosh (1980): In 1980, Govind Nihalani, Aakrosh released, which won the National Film Award for best Feature Film and also got Golden  Peacock for the Best Film at the International Film Festival of India. Smita worked in  Govind Nihalani' Tamas and Ardh Satya also.



4. Namak Halaal (1982): Namak Halaal was not one of the most intellectually demanding roles of Smita's career. But, arguably, more people have seen Smita Patil in this super-successful film than in most of her other films put together. A white-sari clad Smita proved she could move with grace and do her own version of the rain dance in the superhit song Aaj Rapat Jaaye Toh Hamein Na Uthaiyo.



5. Arth (1983): Smita has done many different roles in her film career. She was not afraid to take on grey-tinged roles. In Arth, she played Kulbhushan Kharbanda's actress girlfriend, for whom he leaves his wife, Shabana Azmi.



6. Aakhir Kyon? (1985): Smita Patil did some remarkable work in off-beat films of the mid-1980s. J Om Prakash's Aakhir Kyon? is her most significant film from this period. The song Dushman Na Kare Dost Ne Woh Kaam Kiya Hai, was very well picturised theme song.



7. Mirch Masala (1987): Her arguably greatest and unfortunately final role came when Smita re-teamed with Ketan Mehta to play the feisty and fiery Sonbai in Mirch Masala (1987). Smita won raves for playing a spirited spice-factory worker who stands up against a lecherous petty official.



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