She was that girl. You know the kind right? The kind that the society doesn’t approve of, the kind that doesn’t has any friends or family for that matter, the kind that struggles to survive. But fortunately, she was also the kind who fights back and gets what she so rightly deserve!
Rekha’s life was one hell of a roller coaster ride but she didn’t let anything effect her career. Even her whirlwind romance with Mr. Bachchan (Yes, that’s contempt) didn’t stop her from being fabulous.
She was born out of wedlock to Tamil actor Gemini Ganesan and Telugu actress Pushpavalli. Though she was named after her father, he never acknowledged her. Her initial years as you might have already guessed were a mess and probably the worst phase of her entire life and her career. Nobody liked her nor did they approve of her. Who would have known that one day she’ll be this gorgeous gracious lady who’s always impeccably dressed in kanchivarams and could kill you(if that was possible) with her stunning looks! (even at the age of 58)
Rekha started off by appearing in Telugu movies. She made her acting debut as a child actress in Rangula Ratnam in 1966 at the tender age of 12. This is when kids play and get used to the feel of colour pencils in their hands, but not Rehka. She was practicing her lines and getting over any fear that she had.
Her debut in Bollywood was 3 years after, as a lead actress in Anjana Safar. This was the same movie where Rekha was tricked to kiss the lead actor and every single person in the industry disapproved of her, she fought with her entire dignity and kept moving forward.
People or rather actors in industry usually bank on their looks and acting comes second, they first have to be pretty or handsome but again it was different for Rekha. She was referred to as the ugly duckling of the film industry because of the colour of her skin.
Rehka was determined to make a change. She started paying more attention towards enhancing her beauty and improvising on the already perfect acting skills. It was her role of a greedy ambitious wife in Do Anjaane which won her critical acclaim and made her popular with the audience. Her breakthrough in Bollywood was with the movie Ghar, where she portrayed the remarkable role of a gang-rape victim for which she got her first nomination at Filmfare for Best Actress. Her biggest commercial success was Muqaddar Ka Sikander, where she was paired alongside Amitabh Bachchan. In 1980, Rekha appeared in the comedy Khubsoorat, which got her her first Filmfare award as the Best Actress.
Rekha’s most scandalous movie of all time was Silsila, where she portrayed the character of Amitabh Bachchan’s love interest and Jaya Bachchan portrayed the character of his wife, somehow depicting their real life story in a twisted way. It was her last movie with Amitabh Bachchan. She went on to deliver hits like Umrao Jaan for which she won the National Award for Best Actress. Throughout her time as a popular actress In Bollywood, Rekha appeared in over 140 movies, portraying various characters and transforming herself from being an ugly duckling to a sex symbol.
Rekha was married to a Delhi based industrialist, Mukesh Aggarwal, who later committed suicide. This almost destroyed her, she went into hibernation for a while but came back with a bang and decided to forget all the men as they didn’t give her happiness or respect. Be it her father, husband or Amitabh Bachchan. It was only then when Rekha closed all doors to her heart.
Come what may, she kept moving and moving. She had her share of scandals but every time she rose above them and emerged stronger than ever. Kudos to her for that! Her life and career are both brilliant examples of how women don’t need men in their lives to get it going. Life doesn’t stop and we always have choices and from the looks of it, Rekha always made the right choices!
Celebden Team wishes Rekha a very happy birthday!