An actress par excellence with enviable dancing skills Madhuri Dixit has won millions of hearts over a career spanning nearly three decades. As the actress turns 47 today, here's a look at the life and times of the 'Madhubala of nineties'.
Madhuri Dixit was born on May 15, 1967 to Shankar and Snehlata Dixit. Madhuri is the youngest of the four siblings – she has two elder sisters, Rupa and Bharathi, and an elder brother, Ajit.
After completing her graduation, Madhuri Dixit did her Bachelor's Degree in Microbiology. Though she wanted to be a micro-biologist, life took a different turn and she ended up as one of the most successful actresses in Bollywood.
Over the years Madhuri Dixit has garnered praises for her dancing skills as much as for her acting. The ace actress is a trained Kathak dancer and is passionate about dancing. Madhuri Dixit once said in an interview: ‘I love dancing. I have been dancing since I was three-year-old.’She once tweeted: 'Everyone has to find something that keeps them focused and in shape. For me it is dancing!'
Madhuri Dixit during a dance programme with her sister.
On 17 October 1999, Madhuri Dixit married Dr Sriram Madhav Nene, a cardiologist who practiced in Denver. After marriage, Madhuri relocated to Denver for almost a decade.
Though Madhuri is an iconic star in Indian cinema, her husband was unaware of his wife’s celebrity status. In an earlier interview Dr Shriram Nene had said: "I grew up in LA and so I had friends in the entertainment field. Not everyone in the industry is so humble. Meeting Madhuri was refreshing as she didn’t have any airs about her."
The couple has two sons, Arin (born in March 2003) and Ryan (born in March 2005). Talking about her kids Madhuri said: "My sons keep the child in me alive! Every stage of being a mother is amazing."
In October 2011, Madhuri Dixit shifted back to Mumbai, India, along with her family. (Source: Instagram)
In March 2013, Madhuri, backed by her husband Shriram Nene, opened an online dance academy - 'Dance With Madhuri', where fans can pick up the moves from the dancing diva herself. "It is the passion towards dancing that got me into this," Madhuri had said at the launch of the academy.
She has undoubtedly mesmerised millions of people around the world and one of them has been the famous painter M.F. Husain. Madhuri has been a muse for M.F. Husain. He was so fascinated by Madhuri in Hum Aapke Hain Koun..! that he watched the film 67 times, and in 2007 he booked an entire theatre to see her comeback movie Aaja Nachle. He made a series of paintings on her, and in 2000 made a film named Gaja Gamini which was intended as a tribute to Madhuri.
During her earlier years in Bollywood, Madhuri was rumoured to have an affair with Sanjay Dutt. The affair began sometime after Sanjay Dutt lost his wife Richa Sharma in 1987. However, both have maintained a long-drawn silence over their 'suspected' love affair which did not last for long. It is believed that Sanjay's arrest in connection with the 1993 Mumbai blasts took the relationship to its unfortunate end. (Source: Express archive photo)
Ahead: Madhuri Dixit’s life in Bollywood
Talking about her professional life, Madhuri Dixit began her Bollywood career in 1984 'Abodh'. The film was a box office failure but Madhuri earned positive reviews from critics. After 'Abodh', she delivered a series of flops like 'Awara Baap' (1985), 'Swati' and 'Manav Hatya' (1986, 'Mohre', 'Hifazat' and 'Uttar Dakshin' (1987). (Source: Express archive photo)
Madhuri Dixit's big breakthrough came in 1988 as Mohini in N. Chandra's blockbuster 'Tezaab' opposite Anil Kapoor. The film went on to become that year's highest grossing movie. It was Madhuri's first hit at the box office and even won her the Filmfare Best Actress Award. (Source: Express archive photo)
In 1989, her first release was Subhash Ghai's movie 'Ram Lakhan', in which she was paired once again with Anil Kapoor. The film became a superhit and went on to become the second highest grossing film of the year.
Madhuri's next release 'Prem Pratigyaa', opposite Mithun Chakraborty, earned her a second nomination for the Filmfare Best Actress Award. (Source: Express archive photo)
Thereafter Madhuri Dixit achieved stardom with films like 'Tridev' (1989), 'Kishen Kanhaiya', 'Dil', 'Jamai Raja' (1990), '100 Days', 'Saajan' (1991), 'Beta', 'Khel' (1992), 'Khalnayak' (1993), 'Hum Aapke Hain Koun..!' (1994), 'Raja', 'Yaarana' (1995), 'Prem Granth' (1996), 'Koyla', 'Mrityudand' (1997), among others.
In 1991, Madhuri and Sanjay Dutt were first seen together in 'Mahaanta' (1987). Though they have been seen together in films like 'Khatron Ke Khiladi', 'Thanedaar' and 'Illaka', it was first the romantic film 'Saajan' in 1991 which fuelled the rumours of their affair. They last shared the screen space in 'Khalnayak' (1993). (Source: Express archive photo)
In 1994 Madhuri Dixit was seen in a very different avatar in 'Anjaam' opposite Shah Rukh Khan. In 2000, Madhuri Dixit was seen in a negative role in 'Pukaar'. Though the film was a box office failure, Madhuri’s performance was highly appreciated.
Madhuri also shared a fantastic onscreen chemistry with Shah Rukh Khan. Together they were seen in five films – 'Koyala', 'Anjaam', 'Dil Toh Pagal Hai', 'Hum Tumhare Hain Sanam' and 'Devdas'.
In 2002, post the over-whelming response as Chandramukhi in Sanjay Leela Bhansali’s 'Devdas' she took a sabbatical from films to raise her children.
After a gap of four years Madhuri Dixit made a comeback in 2007 with 'Aaja Nachle'. Despite the critics slamming the film, Madhuri's performance was liked by all.
Madhuri Dixit returned to the silver screen in 2014, first as the sly Begum Para in 'Dedh Ishqiya' and then in a power packed role in “Gulaab Gang'.
Both films, however, bombed at Box Office. Madhuri though gained appreciation in Dedh Ishqiya, in which she played the role of a conniving Begum Para who lures Naseeruddin Shah with her charms to make things work as per her plans.
In 'Gulaab Gang', Madhuri Dixit starred along with her 90s rival Jushi Chawla, who was cast in a negative role. While madhuri portrayed the leader of a vigilante group loosely based on Sampat Lal, Juhi stole the show as the corrupt politician.
Madhuri Dixit's dancing skills are enviable. She has danced her way into the hearts of the audience with popular numbers including 'Dhak Dhak Karne Laga, Ek Do Teen, Chane Ke Khet Mein, Didi Tera Devar Deewana, Choli Ke Peechhe, Mera Piya Ghar Aaya, Kay Sera Sera' and 'Maar Daala' among others.
Renowned Kathak dancer Pandit Birju Maharaj, who choreographed Madhuri Dixit in Devdas for the song Kaahe Chhed calls her "the best dancer in Bollywood" due to her versatility’. Pt. Birju Maharaj also choreographed a mujra for Madhuri in her film 'Dedh Ishqiya'.
In 2011, the dancing diva appeared as a judge on the dance reality show 'Jhalak Dikhhla Jaa 4' along with Remo D'souza and Malaika Arora Khan. The following summer, in 2012, Madhuri rejoined for 'Jhalak Dikhhla Jaa 5' along with Remo D'souza and Karan Johar. Now, Madhuri is all set to for the seventh season of the show which starts in 2014.
Madhuri Dixit’s life in BollywoodKeeping up with the item number trend Madhuri was seen in an item number with Ranbir Kapoor in his film 'Yeh Jawaani Hai Deewani'.
Here's wishing a very happy birthday to the actress with a million dollar smile.