An Indian-born, British trained character actor, Seth began his career after graduating from LAMDA in the late 1960s. He worked as an actor and director in British repertory before landing a role in P...
Earned praise for leading role in the Canadian feature "Such a Long Journey"
Co-starred in "London Kills Me", written and directed by Kureishi
Made guest appearances on US TV, including brief stint on ABC soap "General Hospital"
Worked in repertory theater in the United Kingdom
Breakthrough film role, Pandit Nehru in Richard Attenborough's "Gandhi"
Toured USA with Peter Brook's production of "A Midsummer's Night Dream"
Played the father of the prospective bridegroom in "Monsoon Wedding"
Film debut, Richard Lester's "Juggernaut"; last film appearance for eight years
Played Victor Mehta in David Hare's play "A Map of the World" in Adelaide, Australia, London and NYC
Moved to England
Returned to India
First collaboration with Hanif Kureishi, "My Beautiful Laundrette"
Worked as journalist and editor at "India International Centre Quarterly"
Co-starred in British TV adaptation of "The Buddha of Suburbia" by Kureishi
Born and raised in India
An Indian-born, British trained character actor, Seth began his career after graduating from LAMDA in the late 1960s. He worked as an actor and director in British repertory before landing a role in Peter Brook's version of "A Midsummer Night's Dream" which toured the USA in 1972. He made brief appearances on US TV shows and made his feature film debut in Richard Lester's "Juggernaut" (1974). Because of his ethnicity, roles in classical productions were scarce and Seth decided to retire from acting and returned to India to pursue a career as a journalist and editor.
At the urging of Richard Attenborough, Seth returned to acting as Pandit Nehru in the biopic "Gandhi" (1982). Around the same time, playwright-director David Hare was casting the lead in his new play "A Map of the World" and he persuaded Seth to create the role of Victor Mehta, a sardonic and celebrated Indian author, first performed in Australia, then London and finally in NYC. Following the success of "Gandhi" and the stage role, Seth was cast as the duplicitous aide-de-camp of the young potentate in Steven Spielberg's "Indian Jones and the Temple of Doom" and also appeared in David Lean's "A Passage to India" (both 1984). Other roles followed including Mr. Pancks in Christine Edzard's epic adaptation of "Little Dorrit" (1988), "Mountains on the Moon" and "1871" (both 1990). In 1991, Seth was a sympathetic Iranian in "Not Without My Daughter" and was the traditional-minded and racially intolerant father of a young girl in love with an African American in Mira Nair's "Mississippi Masala". In "Streetfighter" (1994), he was a biophysicist held captive by an evil dictator (Raul Julia).
In 1985, Seth began a collaboration with writer-director Hanif Kureishi. He played the left-leaning journalist father of a Pakistani youth (Gordon Warnecke) in Stephen Frears' "My Beautiful Laundrette", written by Kureishi. Six years later, he co-starred in Kureishi's uneven feature directorial debut "London Kills Me" (1991) as the owner of a Sufi center. He reteamed with the screenwriter again for the four-part BBC TV miniseries "The Buddha of Suburbia" (1993) in which he played the father of the central character.
British; together 1968-77
London Academy of Music and Dramatic Art
St Stephen's College
The Doon School
"If I became a busy actor, being talked about and written about, the pressure on me would be so much I would crack and the work would suffer. In India everything is such a struggle and so disorganized tht you can never get away from the now, and the future seems not only remote but downright unlikely. Good reviews don't mean a damn thing to anybody. I find that very reassuring." --Seth quoted in PEOPLE, October 28, 1985
"Roshan has a wonderful simplicity in the conveying of thoughts and emotion, and yeat he is equally able to portray characters of considerable complexity." --Richard Attenborough on Seth quoted in PREMIERE, March 1992