There was a time when Abhay Deol was the poster boy of parallel Hindi cinema, that not just entertained but also brought in decent money at the box office.
In fact, the early part of his career makes us wish that we get to see Abhay's old charm return in the work he takes up, rather than see him in projects like 1962: The War In The Hills.
As Abhay turns 45 on March 15, Joginder Tuteja looks back at his best work.
Manorama - Six Feet Under
Though Manorama - Six Feet Under couldn't do much at the box office at the time of its release, over a period of time, it has found cult status for itself amongst the lovers of noir cinema.
As a man, who sets out to unravel the mystery behind a murder, Abhay showed characteristic restrain in this dark and entertaining drama.
His highest grossing solo affair, Dev D saw Abhay give us his take on Devdas.
Under Anurag Kashyap's direction, he brought in the right mix of quirk and humour into the proceedings as he found love in his own Paro and Chandramukhi.
It was fun to see him with Mahie Gill and Kalki Koechelin in this psychedelic world of alcohol and women.
Zindagi Na Milegi Dobaara
Though he didn't speak about this much at the time of release, Abhay has recently been vocal about how this film about three best friends was made to look like a single hero film with Hrithik Roshan leading the show.
He could well be right since Zoya Akhtar's directorial venture wouldn't have been the same without Abhay and Farhan Akhtar.
Ek Chalis Ki Last Local
One of his most hilarious films till date, Ek Chalis Ki Last Local was as humorous as it gets with Director Sanjay Khanduri making sure that the actor was seen in a new light.
Along with Neha Dhupia, he was a complete riot in this 'raat ek baat ki' thriller which boasts of quite a few ROFL moments.
Socha Na Tha
A tale of innocent love, debutant Abhay brought in some purity to the proceedings with a boy-next-door act.
Director Imtiaz Ali was also starting his career and he made sure that the jodi of Abhay and Ayesha Takia looked sweet on screen.
Though the film didn't do well commercially, it is still remembered fondly.
Oye Lucky! Lucky Oye!
At a time when Abhay was picking up unconventional films, Director Dibakar Banerjee offered him Oye Lucky! Lucky Oye!
As a conman, the actor was quite a hoot in this fun entertainer that also featured Paresh Rawal in a triple role.
In one of his most compelling performances till date, Abhay reunited with Dibakar Banerjee and played a man much older than his real age.
Shanghai also featured Emraan Hashmi in a never-seen-before avatar.
The film won rave reviews, but did not do well commercially.
Happy Bhag Jayegi
One of the few commercial films that Abhay has done in his decade-and-a-half career is Happy Bhag Jayegi, a decent commercial success.
Abhay played a Pakistani who got Diana Penty's Happy out of the mess in a foreign land.
Honeymoon Travels Pvt Ltd
Abhay paired up with Minissha Lamba in Honeymoon Travels Pvt Ltd and played a couple with superpowers.
Though none of the usual tropes associated with superhero films were on display in this Reema Kagti film, it was fun to see Abhay let his hair down for an ensemble affair that did well at the box office.
Though designed as a feature film, JL50 saw a belated release as a Web series on Sony LIV a few months ago.
As an investigating officer who had to figure out the mysterious disappearance and then reappearance of an airplane, Abhay was quite impressive in this thriller that involved time travel.
After a long time, one got to see vintage Abhay.