Best Performances of the Decade by Male Actors in Hindi Films


In our series for looking at the best of the decade, the current focus is on Performances in Hindi Films. We have already looked at The Best Performances by Female Actors for the Period 2010-2019 and it ended up being an extremely rich list of great performances. The task for arriving at the Best Performances by Male Actors was even tougher. As much as there is an increased focus on writing more and more strong female characters, it remains a fact that most of our stories in Indian cinema are still primarily centered around men and their complex worlds. Most of the storytellers are men, the demand of the box office is also skewed, and hence the art and commerce both ensure that the space and scope that the leading men have is enormous. The good news is that the potential and the depth of the craft of our fine actors even surpasses the opportunity size, and hence we have seen some tremendous performances delivered by the leading men over the last decade.

The 30 Best Performances by Male Actors in Hindi Films in the past decade is hence a super-rich list of brilliant performances. The range of characters are varied, spaced out across age, social backdrop, genre and milieu of the stories, and the moral character arc of the role. Such was the impact of certain ensemble films that they made space for more than one performance in the Best of list, and there were actors who clearly dominated the list with two or sometimes even three performances securing their berths. As with the list of female actors, we have only considered films that got a theatrical release, and also considered films that had multiple languages including Hindi, or was a dual language film. This is not a ranked list and we go chronologically by the year of release and then alphabetically, based in the film names. Some amount of subjectivity is a given, as cinema will continue to have its personal appeal. Hence, it would be good to know any additions or changes your list would have than this. But here is what we thought:
Honorable mentions:

Ranveer Singh as Bittoo Sharma (Band Baaja Baaraat, 2010), Rishi Kapoor as Santosh Duggal (Do Dooni Chaar, 2010), Annu Kapoor as Dr. Baldev Chaddha (Vicky Donor, 2012), Dhanush as Kundan Shankar (Raanjhanaa, 2013), Neeraj Kabi as Maitreya (Ship of Theseus, 2013), Shashank Arora as Titli (Titli, 2015), Rajkummar Rao as Newton Kumar (Newton, 2017), Vineet Kumar Singh as Shravan Kumar Singh (Mukkabaaz, 2018), Vijay Verma as Moeen Arif (Gully Boy, 2019), Farhan Akhtar as Niren Chaudhary (The Sky is Pink, 2019)

Top 30 Performances by Male Actors in Hindi Films of 2010 – 2019 (in order of year of release)

Ronit Roy as Bhairav Singh | Udaan (2010)


Ranbir Kapoor as Janardan Jakhar / Jordan | Rockstar (2011)


Ranbir Kapoor as Barfi | Barfi! (2012)


Manoj Bajpayee as Sardar Khan | Gangs of Wasseypur (2012)


Nawazuddin Siddiqui as Faizal Khan | Gangs of Wasseypur (2012)


Pankaj Tripathi as Sultan Qureshi | Gangs of Wasseypur (2012)


Irrfan Khan as Paan Singh Tomar | Paan Singh Tomar (2012)


Aamir Khan as Surjan Singh Shekhawat | Talaash : The Answer Lies Within (2012)


Irrfan Khan as Saajan Fernandez | The Lunchbox (2013)


Nawazuddin Siddiqui as Shaikh | The Lunchbox (2013)


Rajkummar Rao as Shahid Azmi | Shahid (2013)


Sanjay Mishra as Raje Bauji | Aankhon Dekhi (2014)


Naseeruddin Shah as Ferdinand Pinto / Ferdie | Finding Fanny (2014)


Shahid Kapoor as Haider | Haider (2014)


Randeep Hooda as Mahabir Bhati | Highway (2014)


Manoj Bajpayee as Prof. Ramchandra Siras | Aligarh (2015)


Sanjay Mishra as Vidyadhar Pathak | Masaan (2015)


Vicky Kaushal as Deepak Chaudhary | Masaan (2015)


Irrfan Khan as Rana Chaudhary | Piku (2015)


Ranvir Shorey as Vikram | Titli (2015)


Aamir Khan as Mahabir Singh Phogat | Dangal (2016)


Fawaad Khan as Rahul Kapoor | Kapoor & Sons (2016)


Vikrant Massey as Shyamal Chatterjee / Shutu | A Death In The Gunj (2017)


Ayushmann Khurrana as Abhimanyu Roy | Meri Pyaari Bindu (2017)


Adil Hussain as Rajiv | Mukti Bhawan (2017)


Pankaj Tripathi as Aatma Singh | Newton (2017)


Ayushmann Khurrana as Aakash | Andhadhun (2018)


Vicky Kaushal as Vicky Sandhu | Manmarziyaan (2018)


Varun Dhawan as Danish Walia / Dan | October (2018)


Ranveer Singh as Murad Ahmed / Gully Boy | Gully Boy (2019)


So that was the chronological listing of 30 Best Performances by Male Actors in Hindi Films – A Third Vantage Point Perspective! Honestly, even after this there are some very good performances that could still not be accommodated, and the decision was against the list to go too long. Here’s hoping that listing down the best performances for next decade gets even tougher than this, a good problem to have that no one will complain about.

What are your thoughts on the list? For similar such perspectives on who were the best of the decade, please click here. We have more to add and discuss. And as always, keep watching good films!


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Copyright ©2019 Jayashree Chakravarti. This article cannot be reproduced in its entirety without permission. A link to this URL can be used instead.

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