Did you know that the hot and sexy Salma Hayek is over 50 years old? That veteran actor Javed Sheikh celebrated his 64th birthday this month? And Will Smith, who has still not lost the charm that made him instantly likeable in the 90s, has been around for more than 25 years? So, what do these actors do to look young? Is it in their genes or are they made that way? MAG has shortlisted the actors who have crossed the age of 45 but don’t look their age. You’ll be surprised to find the names of many celebrities you thought were not THAT old.
Had there been a fountain of youth, people might have found it at the residence of veteran actor Nadeem Baig who started his career in the 60s and still looks well below his 75 years. In fact, in his first TV serial 16 years back, he played hero to Aminah Haq and Nousheen who were born after he starred in his first film Chakori in 1967. His co-star Babra Sharif, who last appeared on screen in the 90s, doesn’t make many public appearances; a couple of years ago, she appeared in an award show and looked as stunning as ever despite being over 60.
Their contemporaries in the 80s – Javed Sheikh and Samina Peerzada – are in a league of their own despite being well over 50! In fact, when Javed Sheikh played the father of Shah Rukh Khan in Om Shanti Om, he looked good when young, and even better when old. On the other hand, veteran actress Bushra Ansari is 60 years old but is still a celebrated entertainer because of her versatility. Give her a role of a mother who wants to be modern (Jawani Phir Nahi Ani), of a villager (Udaari), of an evergreen beauty (Abhi To Main Jawan Hoon) or a Sikh-converted-Muslim (Bilquees Kaur), she always nails it despite being above 60.
Then there is Atiqa Odho who is over 45 she remains the poster girl of anti-aging creams and fountain of youth due to her looks and charisma.
Now let’s talk about some of the leading men of this era – Humayun Saeed, Adnan Siddiqui and Nouman Ijaz have been around since the 90s but still look fit enough to woo ladies of the day. These guys are wonderful actors – Humayun Saeed at 43 was the leading man of the biggest blockbuster film of Pakistan; the 46-year-old Adnan Siddiqui has played characters of mentally and emotionally challenged person, while Nouman Ijaz, in his 50s, is everyone’s favourite because of the charm he brings to the screen.
Let’s move to Hollywood, where film and TV stars keep themselves fit through exercise and sometimes by surgeries. Whatever Tom Cruise does to look young, he looks as young as he was in the early 80s. Generations have grown up watching him spell magic and he has been making women go weak in their knees since forever. Similarly, the fans of John Stamos were in for a shock when the famous Uncle Jesse from Full House was back in their lives in Grandfathered doing more or less the same things but for a different kind of audience.
Talking of sitcoms brings us to Paul Rudd, Phoebe’s love interest in the last two seasons of Friends, is an actor who refuses to age. For the newer audience, he is the quintessential Ant-Man who appears to be in his early 30s but is actually in his late 40s! From the same Marvel Universe, we have Hugh Jackman who plays Wolverine and like his character, doesn’t grow old. Despite being 48, he looks as fit as any newcomer. Same goes for the former member of New Kids on the Block, Mark Wahlberg who still looks young, despite being 45 years old.
Then there is Keanu Reeves and Sandra Bullock who both made an appearance as a pair in Speed 22 years ago and have been winning the hearts of audiences ever since. Another former couple Brad Pitt and Jennifer Aniston still look young despite the passage of time. While Pitt keeps becoming more charming with his age, Aniston hasn’t let go of her charisma that made her famous in Friends. Then there are Diane Lane and Halle Berry, who take the audience’s breath away by being drop-dead gorgeous. They might be in their 40s but one look at them and you forget that time has gone by. Last but not the least, there is Chuck Norris who had the honour of fighting Bruce Lee on screen in The Way of the Dragon – that was 44 years ago. The 76-year old doesn’t look a day older than 45. He looked like an action star from another planet when he appeared in The Expendables 2 with other action stars including Sylvester Stallone, Arnold Schwarzenegger and many others from the 80s.
Let’s cross the border and take a look at the ageless actors in India. The Khans who are over-50 still lead Bollywood and they don’t let their increasing age be a problem. Aamir Khan played a college student in 3 Idiots while his own son was studying in college; he played a clueless alien in PK and looked young both at heart and mind. On the other hand, Salman Khan may have earned the nickname Dabangg after his super hit film but his swag and ability to play a young man had made him a Dabangg much earlier for his fans. Akshay Kumar made his debut in the early 90s and since then has been a health freak; that’s why no one questions him when he romances younger females in Airlift, Housefull 3 and Rustom, all released in the same year when he is entering his 50s. Then there is Anil Kapoor, who refuses to age, even after his daughter has entered the industry. Yes, he did play the father in Dil Dhadakne Do but the 59-year-old was back to his young-man-antics as Majnu bhai in Welcome Back last year.
Then there is the woman with a million-dollar smile Madhuri Dixit who made her film debut in the 80s but still looks as fresh as she did as a teenager. Be it her appearance in the Ghagra song in Yeh Jawaani Hai Deewani three years back or her comeback flick Dedh Ishqiya in 2014, Madhuri always sets the screen on fire with her dazzling beauty. Another actress from the same era Juhi Chawla continues to glow despite nearing her 50s. When she appeared opposite Madhuri in Gulaab Gang in 2014, it was a treat for the audience.
But were they the only actresses to look good with the passage of time? No, there is Hema Malini who still sets the screen on fire at the age of 67, we have Rekha who refuses to show any signs of aging, and then there is Sridevi who can still compete with models and actresses of the day!