Roshan Seth Biography
Roshan Seth is a Genie Award winning and BAFTA Award nominated English-Indian actor, who appears mainly in British and American films. He is most well-known for his critically acclaimed performances in the films Gandhi, Mississippi Masala, Not Without My Daughter, My Beautiful Laundrette, Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom, and Such a Long Journey.
Seth was born in Patna, India, the son of a professor of biochemistry. He was educated at The Doon School, further doing graduation in History at St Stephen's College, and honing his theatrical skills at the Shakespeare Society before moving on to the UK for further training. He attended the London Academy of Music and Dramatic Art in British repertory theater.
Seth's first break came in Peter Brook's production of A Midsummer Night's Dream, which toured in 1972. Seth entered feature films in Richard Lester's Juggernaut (1974), but because subsequent filmmakers only wanted Seth for ethnic roles, his career abruptly stalled.
Discouraged, he abandoned acting and returned to India, where he worked as an editor and journalist until the early 1980s, when Richard Attenborough asked Seth to play Jawaharlal Nehru in Gandhi (1982). Seth was nominated the BAFTA Award for Best Actor in a Supporting Role for his performance in the film.
Also in 1982, Seth played Indian author Victor Mehta in David Hare's biographical play, A Map of the World, which toured for several years in Australia, London, and New York. After the release of the multi-award-winning movie Gandhi (1982), Seth was much in demand, and when A Map of the World's Broadway run finished, his movie career took off. His work in 1984 included major roles in Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom and David Lean's A Passage to India. Following that he played a lead in My Beautiful Laundrette (1985), and he played Pancks in Little Dorrit (1988).
Seth's film credits in the 1990s included roles in Not Without My Daughter (1991), Mississippi Masala (1991), Street Fighter (1994), and Harish Saluja's The Journey (1997). In 1993, he played the role of Haroon Amir in the television miniseries The Buddha of Suburbia, for which he was nominated a Royal Television Society award for "Best Actor - Male". In 1995, he played the role of Baba in Flight, for which he won the "Best Actor" award at the Sochi International Film Festival. In 1998, he played the leading role of Gustad Noble in the film Such a Long Journey, for which he won the Genie Award for Best Performance by an Actor in a Leading Role.
In 2001, Seth appeared in Monsoon Wedding, and he has continued working steadily in British and American films. In 2003 he played the lead in the American film Cosmopolitan, which was broadcast nationally on PBS. He also recently came back into mainstream Indian commercial cinema with his crisp role in the noted 2007 film, Guru.