Ray introduced Sharmila Tagore in Apur
Sansar, the final film of the Apu Trilogy. She played
the young wife Aparna. She was just a fourteen-year-old then, with no previous acting
experience. As the shooting began, Ray had to shout instructions to Sharmila during the
takes. None of this, however, is reflected on the screen. Ray cast her in his next film Devi too.
With Shakti Samanta's Kashmir Ki Kali (1964), she acquired the status of a sex symbol. She
made a quite a splash with appearing in two-piece bikini.
Aradhana with Rajesh Khanna was one of the most successful films of 1970's. In Gulzar's Mausam,
she played a memorable role of a prostitute. Her later notable films include Amanush, Anand
Ashram and New Delhi Times.
She married the former cricketer Nawab Ali Khan Pataudi, and has a son - Saif Ali Khan who
is one of the leading actors of Bombay cinema.