Born on Valentine's Day, the ethereal Madhubala would have turned 80 today
February 13, 2013, 6:54 pm
There can be no one as special as her. The beautiful Madhubala's life may have been cut short abruptly, but the actress still lives through her films.
Born as Mumtaz Jahan Begum Dehlavi in New Delhi on 14 February 1933 to a Muslim couple from Delhi, Madhubala was the fifth child among eleven children.
Due to poverty, Madhubala's father made his daughter work in films for the tender of nine. She made her debut as a child artist and her first big break came in in 1947 in 'Neel Kamal' opposite Raj Kapoor. She was fourteen when she was given the lead role in the movie.
By 1948, Madhubala's first few films as heroine had been released among which were filmmaker Kidar Sharma's Neel Kamal (1947), NM Kelkar's Amar Prem (1948) and Mohan Sinha's Dil Ki Rani (1947), all with Raj Kapoor.
She worked like a machine, missed a meal, travelled daily in the over-crowded third class compartments from Malad to Dadar and was never late or absent from work.
Madhubala had a long affair with Dilip Kumar. They first met on the sets of Jwar Bhata (1944),but it was only two years later during the filming of, Tarana (1951), that the two fell in love. Madhubala's father was not not in favour of the relationship and the couple separated in 1957.
When her dreams of marrying Dilip Kumar ended, Madhubala plunged into a highly unsuitable marriage to Kishore Kumar. A still from the classic film 'Mughal E Azam' featuring the Dilip Kumar and Madhubala.
She met her would-be-husband, actor and playback singer, Kishore Kumar during the filming of Chalti Ka Naam Gaadi and Jhumroo.
The couple had a civil wedding in 1960, though the parents of the groom were not happy with the alliance.
In the early 1950s as Madhubala became one of the most sought-after actresses in India, she also attracted interest from Hollywood.
Her father Ayatollah Khan did not encourage unduly visitors and imposed warnings and constraints on her.
She was the sole earning member of her large family. They were five sisters.
She was not seen at parties, premieres, picnics, races or during the fund raising drives in open trucks or in cricket matches and film festivals most stars frequented.
As a star, Madhubala did ascend to the top of the industry. Her co-stars at the time were the most popular of the period: Ashok Kumar, Raj Kapoor, Dilip Kumar and Dev Anand.