Generally, when a year comes to an end, we have a bunch of great movies to look back to. Unfortunately, this was not the case with 2016. 

While many Bollywood films, both big and small released this year, few managed to leave a mark. It won’t be wrong to claim that 2016 didn’t see the best of Bollywood.

But it was not all disappointment. There were some stellar performances that hit a chord with the audience. In fact, it was a fairly good year when it came to supporting performances. From veterans like Ratna Pathak Shah to newbies like Jim Sarbh, there were many actors who gave performances that stood out, receiving  and deserve a special mention.

Here are the 10 best supporting performances from the Bollywood of 2016:

1. Ratna Pathak Shah as Sunita Kapoor in Kapoor & Sons

Apart from being a well-crafted family drama, Kapoor & Sons turned out to be one of those rare Hindi films that addressed the theme of homosexuality with complete sensitivity. While all the actors in the film were at their best, it was Ratna Pathak Shah as the woman of the house stuck between her sons on one hand and dealing with her husband’s infidelity on the other, who stood out. 

She fit the role of a frustrated wife and possessive mother perfectly and brought a stellar performance on the table.

India Today

2. Purab Kohli as Ibrahim Durrani in Airlift

Airlift happened to stir up nationalistic sentiments in the hearts of everyone who watched the film. Even though many raved over Akshay Kumar’s phenomenal performance, Purab Kohli found a special mention in the acclaim. 

Purab’s heartfelt performance struck a chord with everyone and till the end he had us hoping for a reunion with his lost wife.

Indian Express

3. Jim Sarbh as Khalil in Neerja

Neerja was the big reveal of 2016. Not only did it reveal the possibility that Sonam Kapoor could actually act, it also put Jim Sarbh in front of the world. Remember the dreaded hijacker who gave us the chills with every word he said? 

Jim Sarbh was so believable in his role, he actually got death threats after the film released.

4Kranti Prakash Jha as Santosh Lal in MS Dhoni- The Untold Story

This was undoubtedly one of the most awaited films of the year. It might or might not have given us a glimpse of Dhoni’s ‘untold’ story but it did introduce us to his childhood friend Santosh

Santosh taught Dhoni the famous helicopter shot. Kranti Jha was effortless as Santosh and he made us all want a friend like him.

5. Suhail Nayyar as Jassi in Udta Punjab

Many would say that Diljeet deserves a mention here but we believe that he was one of the leads. 

On the other hand, Suhail Nayyar asTommy Singh’s not-so-loyal friend Jassi was just as Gabru as Tommy himself. 

The actor clearly shone bright despite a plethora of great performances in the movie.


6. Aishwarya Rai Bachchan as Saba in Ae Dil hai Mushkil

For everyone who went for ADHM, it was quite a disappointment to realize that Ash was nothing more than a supporting character in the film. Even though she was there for a brief while, she managed to sparkle on-screen with every frame. 

Looking drop-dead gorgeous, she gave a nuanced performance and with every Urdu word she uttered, we fell deeper in love with the actress.

India Times

7. Surveen Chawla as Bijli in Parched

Surveen Chawla has proved her acting prowess way too many times now. She started off as a TV actress and now firmly stands among the strong female talents of Bollywood. She was high on spunk as Bijli in Parched

While the film created waves all across the world, Surveen gathered much acclaim from critics and audiences alike.

Bollywood Bubble

8. Kirti Kulhari as Falak Ali in Pink

Pink addressed the less-spoken about issue of consent and started a conversation that was long overdue. The three girls were fierce and strong in the portrayal of their characters. 

While Tapsee floored us with her performance, Kirti stood out too, especially in that one scene where she breaks down in court. 

9. Yashaswini Dayama as Jackie in Dear Zindagi

Dear Zindagi was one of 2016’s most cherished gifts from Bollywood. The movie started a conversation about mental health that extended beyond the taboos that revolve around the issue. 

The film also introduced us to her bubbly and cute friend Jackie. She was Alia’s adorable support system and reminded us of the cute little, drunk friend we all have.

The Quint

10. Sobhita Dhulipala as Simmy in Raman Raghav 2.0

Raman Raghav 2.0 might not have created many waves at the box-office but it showcased a variety of great performances. 

Sobhita Dhulipala managed to stun the audience with her power packed performance as Simmy, in a film which had brilliant actors like Nawaz and Vicky Kaushal. This model-turned-actress was phenomenal on screen and we’d like to see more of her in 2017.


These actors prove that sometimes all it takes to make a mark is conviction and undeterred determination and not necessarily a lead role!