Mumbai: Actor Anupam Kher believes that character artists are the real pillars of any film.
"I think those whom we term as character actors in India, are basically the pillars of a film. You have to have a training or you have to be from theatre to be able to support the rest of the film," the 57-year-old said here Monday at a function organised by Indian People`s Theatre Association (IPTA) to pay tribute to late A.K. Hangal at Prithvi Theatre.
Hangal started his movie career very late and carved a niche for himself with character roles in "Sholay", "Deewar", "Bawarchi" and "Shaukeen" among others.
"So I think theatre gives you great amount of confidence, it gives you a certain amount of staying power and that`s why theatre actors stay longer than any other actors in the field of cinema," said Anupam, known for his roles in "Saaransh", "Daddy", "Karma" and "Maine Gandhi Ko Nahin Mara".
Shabana Azmi also supports Anupam`s views and said that every actor should play character roles.
"I think only those actors have a long career who even when they are playing just lead roles, do character roles, do substantial roles. That`s way longevity of their career is elongated," Shabana said here.
Anupam, Shabana, actor Kabir Bedi, lyricist Javed Akhtar, Aanjjan Srivastav were among those present at the Prithvi Theatre to pay tribute to Hangal who died Sunday.