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Shobhna Samarth

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Full Name  Saroj Shilotri
Nationality  Indian
Spouse  Kumarsen Samarth
Name  Shobhna Samarth
Role  Actress

Shobhna Samarth in a scene from Marathi film called "Saibaba" | Remembering Shobhna Samarth; posted by Swapnil Sansar

Born  7 November 1916 (age 83) Mumbai, India
Occupation  actress, film director, producer
Relatives  Shomu Mukherjee (Son-in-law)Rajnish Bahl (Son-in-law)See Mukherjee-Samarth family
Children  Nutan, Tanuja, Chatura Samarth, Reshma Samarth
Movies  Ram Rajya, Hamari Beti, Chhalia, Insaniyat, Love in Simla
Similar People  Nutan, Tanuja, Rattan Bai, Shomu Mukherjee, Kajol

Parents  Rattan Bai, P.S. Shilotri

Died  9 February 2000 (aged 83) Pune, Maharashtra, India

The rivalry of nutan her mother shobhna samarth suhaana safar with annu kapoor

Shobhana Samarth (17 November 1916 – 9 February 2000) was an Indian film actress, director and producer of Marathi ethnicity, who began her career in the early days of talkie movies in the Hindi film industry, and continued in lead roles into the 1950s. She started in Marathi cinema. Her first Hindi film, Nigahen Nafrat, was released in 1935. She is best remembered for her portrayal of Sita in Ram Rajya (1943). In 1997, she was honoured with the Filmfare Special Award for her contribution to arts.


Shobhna Samarth smiles while wearing a white shirt and pair of earrings

Samarth later produced and directed a pair of movies that launched the careers of her daughters, Nutan and Tanuja.

Shobhna Samarth produced daughter Tanuja's debut film

Early life

Shobhna Samarth with her curly short hair looking lonely while wearing a scarf and a collared shirt

Shobhna was born on 17 November 1916 in Bombay, British India, as Saroj Shilotri. An only child, her father Prabhakar Shilotri was a "pioneer banker" having started the Shilotri Bank in Bombay. Her mother was Rattan Bai, in 1936, acted in a film Frontiers of Freedom in Marathi (Swarajyachya Seemewar). Shobhna studied initially in Cathedral School, Bombay, for one year. In 1928, her father suffered financial losses and the business went into liquidation. The family then shifted to Bangalore in 1931, where Shobhana attended Baldwin Girls High School. To earn a living, her father gave private tuitions while her mother taught in a Marathi school. In December that year, her father died of a heart attack and the mother and daughter returned to Bombay to stay with her maternal uncle. Shobhna studied in a convent school but was unable to complete her matriculation as she had joined films by then. Her uncle was opposed to her joining films, and she and her mother moved out of his home (ironically his daughter and Shobhna's cousin Nalini Jaywant herself became an actress). Shobhana taught privately to make money. She met her future husband Kumarsen Samarth during this time, who had just returned from Germany and was keen on directing films. They got engaged and she started work on her first film.


Shobhna Samarth and Kumarsen Samart (creator of such great Marathi / Hindi films as "Nal Damyanti" and "Rupaye ki kahani" (1948))

Shobana's first film was "Orphans Of Society" (1935) also called Nigahe Nafrat or Vilasi Ishwar for Kolhapur Cinetone, directed by Vinayak and starred Vinayak and Baburao Pendharkar. The film was not a success but Shobna was critically acclaimed for her role. The film was a bilingual made in Urdu and Marathi. Shobhna claims in an interview that she did not know any Urdu at that time of filming, speaking the dialogues by rote and it was only later that she picked up the language. She was with Kolhapur Cinetone for thirteen months but acted in one film.

She left Kolhapur Cinetone and joined Sagar Movietone (Sagar Film Company), she acted in one film called Kokila (1937) directed by Sarvottam Badami, starring Motilal, Sabita Devi and Sitara Devi. The other film for Sagar was Do Diwane (1936), directed by C. M. Luhar and co-starring Motilal, Yakub and Aruna Devi.

By the end of 1937, Shobhana left Sagar and joined General Films, acting in Industrial India (Nirala Hindustan) directed by Mohan Sinha with Prem Adib and Wasti. The second film for them was Pati Patni (1939) directed by V. M. Gunjal with co-stars Yakub, Sitara Devi and Wasti.

By 1939 she had joined Hindustan Cinetone making four films with them, which included Kaun Kisi ka (1939) and Saubhagya (1940) by C. M. Luhar, Apni Nagariya (1940) by V. M. Gunjal. She then worked for a film directed by her husband, Kumar Sen Samarth called Ghar Javai (1941) where she was cast with Damuanna Malvankar.

In 1942 came her career-defining film Bharat Milap, directed by Vijay Bhatt and starring Durga Khote as Kaikeyi, Shobhana as Seeta and Prem Adib as Ram. Following this was Ram Rajya in 1943, and Shobhana became identified as Seeta, leading to several other films where they recreated the roles. Shobhana as Sita and Prem Adib as Rama became extremely popular and were accepted by the audiences and had them featuring as Rama and Sita on calendars.

Personal life

Shobhna was married to director and cinematographer Kumarsen Samarth from Vile Parle (E), Mumbai. They had three daughters, Nutan, Tanuja and Chatura and a son, Jaideep. Eventually the couple parted amicably and Shobhana became linked to actor Motilal Rajvansh. Two of her daughters, Nutan and Tanuja, also became actresses. Shobhana produced their debut films. Her other daughter Chatura, is an artist and her son Jaideep is an advertising film producer. Chatura and Jaideep never acted in films. Nutan's son Mohnish Bahl is also an actor as are Tanuja's daughters Kajol and Tanishaa Mukerji. Kajol is married to actor Ajay Devgan. Other members of the dynasty include Shomu Mukherjee who married Tanuja.

She and her daughter Nutan were estranged for more than two decades but reconciled in the year 1983 before Nutan's death from cancer in February 1991. At her own death from cancer in 2000, Shobhna had seven granddaughters, one grandson, three great-granddaughters, and two great-grandsons.


1985 Ghar Dwaar
1980 Esthappan (as Shobhana)
1979 Janta Hawaldar
1973 Panitheeratha Veedu (as Shobhana)
1972 Do Chor
Mrs. Vikram Singh
1972 Ek Bar Mooskura Do (as Shobhana Samarth)
1967 Wahan Ke Log
Rakesh's Mom
1965 Nai Umar Ki Nai Fasal (as Shobhana Samarth)
1960 Chhalia (as Shobhana Samarth)
1960 Love in Simla
Mrs. Rajpal Singh (Sheela's mom) (as Shobhana Samarth)
1956 Bal Ramayan
1955 Insaniyat (as Shobhana Samarth)
1952 Parbat
1951 Ram Janma (as Shobana)
1950 Hamari Beti
Wife (as Shobhana Samarth)
1950 Janmashtami
1949 Narasinha Awtar
1948 Rambaan
1947 Malika
1947 Sati Toral
1947 Shahkar (as Shobana)
1947 Veerangana
1945 Shri Krishn Arjun Yuddha
1945 Taramati
1945 Veer Kunal (as Shobana)
1944 Insaan
Sister of Professor
1943 Mahasati Ansuya
1943 Naukar
Nargis (as Shobana)
1943 Ram Rajya
Devi Maa Sita / Vandevi (as Shobana)
1943 Vijay Lakshmi (as Shobana)
1942 Bharat Milap
Devi Maa Sita
1942 Mata
1942 Savera
1941 Bambai Ki Sair
1940 Apni Nagariya
Sushila (as Shobhana Samarth)
1939 Pati Patni
1939 Sadhana
1938 Nirala Hindustan
1937 Kokila
1936 Be Kharab Jan
Miss Rambha (as Shobana)
1936 Do Diwane
Miss Rambha (as Shobana)
1935 Nigah-e-Nafrat
Princess Indira (as Shobana)
1935 Vilasi Ishwar
Princess Indira (as Shobana)
1960 Chhabili (as Shobhana Samarth)
1950 Hamari Beti (as Shobhana Samarth)


Shobhna Samarth Wikipedia

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