One of the icons of the Hindi Cinema world, Prem was the third of six children born to Ranbirlal and Rooprani Chopra in Lahore. After the partition the family moved to Simla where he along with his four brothers and one sister did their education.He graduated from the Punjab University however the actor in him had already begun to surface. He had been participating on stage since his college days. His talent got recognition even then and he was adjudged the best actor in some of the plays.
This encouraged him to spread his wings and try his luck in the Bombay Film Industry. However to get into films was no easy task. Struggle was the name of the game. So in order to survive the fast life of Bombay he took up a job with the Times of India while trying to gain his foothold in the Hindi Film Industry.During his stint with the Times of India he worked in Punjabi films like Chaudhary Karnail Singh, Sapni and Hindi films such as Woh Kaun Thi, Shaheed, Main Shadi Karne Chala, Teesri Manzil.
While doing Upkaar, he gave up his job to concentrate solely on acting. He made his presence strongly felt, but as a 'bad man'. And he became an artist that the audience loved to hate. In his life outside films he gained the respect of one and all and became someone people loved to love. The name Prem Chopra is familiar to every Indian ear both within the country and abroad. Letters with just his name on the envelope and no address reached safe and sound to his spacious house in Bombay. It has been ages since in real life he has felt the need to say "Prem Naam hai mera ...Prem Chopra." The celebrated face speak volumes.
Today he has completed nearly 400 films all in a span of 35 years and continues working with fervor and zest.Awards have loved to belong to this gifted actor. He has been awarded by Film Fare, Lions, Punjabi Kala Sangam amongst many others for his powerful performances. He has created magic with live audiences while participating in stage shows all over the U.A.E. , Britain, America, Holland, Fiji Islands, Singapore...
This 'villain' has a tender streak in him that those close to him are aware of he has raised funds for many noble causes such as building hospitals, schools, temples, for cine artists and for the needy.If Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde have competition it is with the Villainous screen image of Prem Chopra as compared to his humane real life Persona. A son, husband, father and friend commanding much respect Prem Chopra in every way is a family man worth emulating.
He married Uma in 1969 and the blessed union of the duo turned stronger as they parented three beautiful daughters Rakita, Punita and Prerana. The 3 girls share a unique bond with their enigmatic father and if the feared screen baddie is bullied, it is by his daughters. They call him the 'baby' of the house as he is the first one to go to sleep at night. The newest role that the actor is currently essaying is that of a grandfather as his daughters Punita and Prerana are blessed with a daughter each Sanchi and Khyana. A role which as usual he is playing to perfection.
Contrary to his screen image, the multi-faceted Prem Chopra whose biggest asset is his sincerity lives his life in congruence with name his parents had thoughtfully bestowed on him...P-R-E-M