Amol Palekar (born 24 November 1944) is an actor, director, and producer of Hindi and Marathi cinema.
Palekar made his debut in 1971 with the Marathi film Shantata! Court Chalu Aahe directed by Satyadev Dubey, which started the New Cinema Movement in Marathi. In 1974 he was cast as an actor by Basu Chatterjee in Rajnigandha, and in the surprise low-budget hit, Chhoti Si Baat. This led to many other such roles in “middle-class” comedies, mostly alternative cinema. These were often directed by Chatterjee or Hrishikesh Mukherjee and include such films as Gol Maal and Naram Garam. He won the Filmfare Best Actor Award for Gol Maal.
He is noted for his image of the “middle-class everyman” who struggles to get a job (Gol-Maal), his own flat (Gharonda), a girlfriend/wife (Baaton Baaton Mein), and appreciation from his boss.
In 1979, he was paired with a 16 year old Sridevi in Solva Saawan , which was her debut Hindi movie as a heroine. Amol played the role of a mentally retarded, handicapped man, a character played by Kamal Haasan in the original Tamil movie.
In 1982 he played the role of Ravi in the Malayalam movie Olangal. He turned to directing with the Marathi film Aakriet. He showed his capabilities as a director with movies such as Thodasa Roomani Ho Jaayen and Paheli. Thodasa Roomani Ho Jaayen has become a part of management courses and study pertaining to human behaviour. Paheli was India’s official entry for Best Foreign Film at the 2006 Oscars. The movie, however, did not make it to the final nominations.
He has also given his voice to an HIV/AIDS education animated software tutorial created by the nonprofit organization TeachAIDS. He is willing to act once again if he is given a challenging role.