He was the younger brother of another character actor who played villains, named Madan Puri. While Madan did his best work in comically villainous oles, Amrish's striking bass voice, the ability to extend his eyes widely out of their eyelids during climactic scenes and outsized acting style made him a formidable bad guy in even the most melodramatic movies. He also played sympathetic but overbearing father figures on occasion, and the occasional arthouse role.
Amrish had a passion for collecting hats, and bought a hat or two on every trip abroad. He had a collection of over 200 hats from across the world. Amrish was a very religious person by heart and a Shiva devotee.
He died in Mumbai in 2005 after a brain hemorrhage at the age of 72. His autobiography The Act of Life was published in 2006 and talks about the film industry as he saw it and about his religious beliefs.
- Death Glare: His role as a villain and/or concerned father was always amplified by his bug-eyed stare that could kill whole continents.