This timeless beauty turned 62 today, would you believe that?
Rekha has always been a mystery figure to the world; not just to the public but even within the Bollywood family. Today, we dig up some of her old interviews, facts and movies that will remind us all of her exemplary work and enigmatic personality.
Did you know?
- Rekha grew up without a father figure. Gemini Ganesan and Pushpavalli had Rekha out of wedlock and Gemini never acknowledged his part as Rekha’s father.
- Rekha’s real name was Bhanurekha Ganesan. The family was not doing so well financially and that is why Rekha decided to join the South film industry, starting with B and C grade movies.
- Being fluent only in her native language, Rekha had trouble understanding and speaking Hindi when she got her first break in Bollywood. But over time, she mastered both Hindi and English
- In 1969, she did her movie ‘Anjan Safar’, where she had to do a kissing scene with Biswajeet Chatterjee. Rekha was only 15 years old at the time.
- She was not the Rekha we know today. Bollywood took time to accept her. She was body shamed for her looks, skin colour, weight and had to fight sexism in the industry.
- The famous Amitabh and Rekha love story still remains a mystery to the rest of the world. In 1978, the rumours of them dating cropped up, but we still do not know how or why they broke up.
- In 1981, she won her maiden National Award for her film ‘Umrao Jaan’, where she played the titular role of the courtesan and poetess from 19th century.
Rekha is a closed book. She stopped giving interviews, interactions and turned away from the media after many tragic incidents in her personal life. She reportedly married actor Vinod Mehra with whom she had starred in films like Ghar, but the marriage was shortlived. She married industrialist Mukesh Aggarwal in 1990. His suicide a year later completely shook her.
Yasser Usman recently published a book on Rekha which talks about her life in Bollywood and otherwise, uncovering interviews from old publications and conversations with a select few members of the Bollywood family.
Feature Image Courtesy: www.indiatvnews.com