Rajkummar Rao Birthday Special: Best supporting roles that overshadowed the male lead


Rajkummar Rao, the actor who is the flavor-of-the-season and has made a name for himself in a relatively short period of time is celebrating his 34th birthday today. The young actor is a recipient of several awards, including a National Film Award, three Filmfare Awards, and Screen Award. However, what is worth noticing is the fact that Rajkummar is the busiest actor in Bollywood right now and he is greedy for more, self-admittedly. Every other film that is announced has him in some pivotal role.

Unlike other actors, Rajkummar is not averse to playing a supporting role and more-often-than-not outshines the male lead in films, which is probably why he is getting to play diverse roles and sharing screen space with seniors from the industry. He is also probably one of those few actors who has gone on to become main leads after playing supporting roles in films.

On his birthday today here’s a look at some of the stellar supporting roles that Rajkummar has played which have been as memorable as the main lead’s part.

RECOMMENDED READ: Was an experience of a lifetime: Shraddha on working with Rajkummar, Pankaj Tripathi in Stree

Love Sex Aur Dhokha

Dibakar Banerjee’s experimental anthology film was the debut film of Rajkummar. He played the role of Adarsh, a supermarket supervisor who makes a sex tape with a colleague to sell it to media for a large sum of money.


Shaitan directed by Bijoy Nambiar starred Rajiv Khandelwal, Kalki Koechlin, Gulshan Devaiya, Shiv Pandit, Neil Bhoopalam, Kirti Kulhari, Rajit Kapoor, Pawan Malhotra and Rajkummar Rao. Rajkummar plays the role of corrupt cop Malwankar who tries to extort money from the group of friends that includes Kalki, Gulshan, Shiv, Neil and Kirti. He shines as the corrupt and greedy cop.

Gangs of Wasseypur 2

Rajkummar had a relatively small role in the Anurag Kashyap’s iconic ensemble cast film. He played the role of a small-time goon named Shamshad Alam who has his own transport business and then moves to trading iron by making an alliance with Nawazuddin Siddiqui’s character. He bagged the role after Kashyap saw his performance in Love Sex Aur Dhokha but his character’s screen time was considerably reduced in the final script but he still managed to leave a mark.


In the critically acclaimed Chittagong Rajkummar played the role of freedom fighter Lokenath Bal. The film won the 60th National Film Award for the Best Debut Film of a Director for Bedabrata Pain. Rajkummar stood out even though he was teaming up with such ace actors like Manoj Bajpayee, Nawazuddin Siddiqui, and Jaideep Ahlawat.

Talaash: The Answer Lies Within

Rajkummar played second fiddle to Aamir Khan in this drama directed by Reema Kagti. He played the role of junior officer Devrath Kulkarni who is assisting Aamir in his case. It takes him only one scene in which he is merely a spectator with only a single dialogue to leave an impact and portray what an ace actor can bring to a small role.

Kai Po Che!

Rajkummar played the role of Govind Patel in the screen adaptation of Chetan Bhagat’s hugely successful book The Three Mistakes of My Life. He arguably was not a supporting actor in the film but at the same time, neither he was the main lead because the film gave an equal amount of screen space to the three main protagonists. Sushant Singh Rajput and Amit Sadh played the other two leads in the film.

Dolly Ki Doli

In everyone’s life some rain must fall and so is the case with Rajkummar. After a string of hits and critically acclaimed films, Dolly Ki Doli stopped his home run. The film had Sonam Kapoor in the lead along with Pulkit Samrat. Rajkummar had a relatively smaller and supporting role in the film but at the same time managed to outshine both Sonam and Pulkit with his screen presence, dialogue delivery, and facial expressions. He easily outclassed them and showed once again what a great actor he is.

Hamari Adhuri Kahani

Rajkummar teamed up with Vidya Balan and Emraan Hashmi in this romantic drama film directed by Mohit Suri. The film received mixed reviews from the critics and neither Vidya nor Emraan were praised for their performance. Rajkummar had relatively small screen time in the film but he impressed as a violent husband to Vidya’s character.


Aligarh is probably one of the best biographical drama films ever made. It received a standing ovation at the 20th Busan International Film Festival. Rajkummar teamed up once again with his Shahid director Hansal Mehta and Manoj Bajpayee in this film. Manoj did not let Rajkummar outshine him in the film but the young actor still managed to impress with his performance. He earned the Filmfare Award for Best Supporting Actor nomination for his portrayal.


Rajkummar once again teamed up with his Kai Po Che! co-star Sushant in this film. He played the role of old Rajput ruler Muwwaqqil and underwent a physical transformation for it and played the role of a 324-year-old. The film based on the theme of reincarnation failed to ignite the box office and came to a cropper.

Bareilly Ki Barfi

Bareilly Ki Barfi was a landmark film for Rajkummar who won the Best Supporting Actor Award at every award show in which he was nominated. His portrayal of the street-smart author Pritam Vidrohi was the highlight of the film and he easily outshone both Kriti Sanon and Ayushmann Khurrana who were the main leads. His diabolical role of a timid and submissive person and the boisterous and spunky author was a treat to watch. Rajkummar lights up the screen in every frame of the film in which he appears.

Here's wising the talented actor a vey Happy Birthday!