Sunday, September 28, 2008

Two Strikingly Handsome Men - All The Way Deep Inside

Paul Newman......... Sunil Dutt

Two of the most amazing men on this planet have now moved on.

Yesterday, Paul Newman.
Three years ago, Sunil Dutt.

This is what Paul Newman has said : I'd like to be remembered as a guy who tried - tried to be part of his times. Tried to help people communicate with one another. Tried to find some decency in his own life, tried to extend himself as a human being.

Sunil Dutt died in 2005.
And this is what Sunil Dutt has said, and dedicated his entire life for : "Disease and suffering have no religion and no nationality."

Paul Newman : Forever changed the lives of all those he touched with his generosity, humour and humanness. Quietly turned over the entire value of his ownership in Newman's Own, to charity. An astounding US $ 120 million.

Owned The Hole In The Wall Gang Camp, a summer camp for
children with cancer and other blood-related diesases
(and their siblings) in Ashford, Connecticut. Also
runs a fall "Discovery" program for inner city
kids, also in Ashford.
Finished 2nd in the 1979 Le Mans 24 hr. race in a Porsche 935.
(1987) Won Best Actor Oscar for "The Color of Money" (1986).
(1990) Chosen by People magazine as one of the 50 Most
Beautiful People in the world.
(1995) Chosen by Empire magazine as one of the 100 Sexiest
Stars in film history (#12).

Sunil Dutt - Whatever we speak of him will never match up to his towering presence. Whatever he did for India, Indians will never be able to be grateful enough. I was not even aware of one more aspect that I came to know from my friend - he blogs thus: The details of his will is another proof of his greatness. He wished nothing should be named after him, not even a postage stamp.

This planet in its relentless rush towards its future may not find the time to halt and say thank you. To these stalwarts.
Generations to come may not even be aware of the full extent of the persons they shall have missed.

Sunil Dutt : Jalte Hain Jiske Liye....

Paul Newman and Joanne Woodward

Another factor, not at all trivial :
Their respective loving monogamous relationship. Paul Newman with Joanne Woodward.
Sunil Dutt with Nargis.
Till the very end.
In an industry - and indeed increasingly in this world, where this is not just an exception. It is downright queer.

What is it that went into the making of these men? Why are they so rare?

Postscript :
From the Economist, Oct 4th 2008, that points out that Paul Newman was 'the most generous individual, relative to his income, in the 20th century history of the United States' (profits of over US $ 250 million went to charitable causes around the world including Hole in the Wall camps):
Paul Newman thought little of his blue eyes. He asked his fans whether this was all that they valued him for. His epitaph, he once said, should be "Here lies Paul Newman who died a failure because his eyes turned brown"

Celebrity bugged him in every aspect : the studio contract system from which he rapidly escaped, the Hollywood gossip mill, from which he fled into long-term marriage, motor-racing and Connecticut, the loveless pressure for Oscars and nominations. All this was 'rubbish'. He was unbothered when age began to furrow the brow and fill out the jowls. Unlike Robert Redford, he never made any attempt to preserve his prettiness. Hollywood could deal with him as he was...
Mr. Newman was not a man for plans; he preferred creative chaos.

And in the issue of Oct 13, 2008, Time, and written by Robert Redford :

Paul was very engaged at work. He was there. he liked a lot of rehearsal. But he was fun too. Whenever he made a mistake on set, he would enjoy it more than anybody.
What impressed me about Paul was that he was very realistic about who he was. He knew the world of hyperbole and distortion he was in. That meant he maintained a certain amount of privacy. This commitment to his profession was as serious, as was his commitment to social responsibility and especially to his family. He had a life that had real meaning...
Whatever success one of us would have, the other would knock it down. If you are in a position to be viewed iconically, you'd better have a mechanism to take yourself down to keep the balance. I think we did that for each other.

No comments: