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Remembering Sridevi, Bollywood's Chandni

August 10, 2019 16:46
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    Late actress Sridevi, who was the reigning queen of Bollywood, would have turned 56 today. She died last February in Dubai. She was popularly called the first female superstar of Hindi cinema. She made a comeback to films with 2012's English Vinglish. Her last film was MOM.

    On her birth anniversary, here's a look at her journey.

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    Sridevi was born on August 13, 1963 in Meenampatti village near Sivakasi, Tamil Nadu. Her father was a lawyer from Tamil Nadu and her mother was from Andhra Pradesh.

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    Sridevi made her acting debut at the age of four. She acted in several Hindi, Kannada, Tamil, Telugu and Malayalam films. She won the Kerala State Film Award for Best Child Artist for her performance in Poombatta(1971).

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    Sridevi was 13 when she appeared in her first lead role in the 1976 Tamil movie Moondru Mudichu, opposite Rajinikanth and Kamal Haasan. The movie was a love triangle, with Rajinikanth playing the anti-hero.

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    Sridevi's first Hindi film as the main lead was Solva Saawan (1978), opposite Amol Palekar.

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    Her first super-duper hit in Bollywood was Himmatwala (1983), where she featured opposite Jeetendra. They together appeared in many other movies like Mawaali (1983), Tohfa (1984), and Aulaad (1987) to name a few.

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    Sadma, in the same year, was her first critical success. Sridevi starred opposite Kamal Haasan in the Hindi remake of their Tamil hit Moondram Pirai and her outstanding performance in the movie won her a nomination in the Best Actress category of Filmfare Awards.

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    Sridevi acted in Jaag Utha Insaan (1984), opposite Mithun Chakravarty and Rakesh Roshan.

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    In 1986, Sridevi played a snake-woman in Nagina, a role rejected by many actresses, opposite Rishi Kapoor. The movie became a superhit and the credit went to Sridevi and her snake dance. She followed it up with a sequel called Nigaahen (1989).

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    Shekhar Kapur's blockbuster movie Mr India (1987) made Anil Kapoor and Sridevi one of the hit on screen pairs of the late '80s. Among the highlights of the film were Sridevi's hilarious take-off on Charlie Chaplin, the tongue-in-cheek dance sequence Hawa Hawai and song Kaate Nahin Kat Te.

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    In 1989, Sridevi played a double role in Pankaj Parashar's Chaalbaaz, which was a remake of Sita Aur Gita. She was cast opposite Sunny Deol and Rajinikanth and bagged the Filmfare Award for Best Actress for her performance.

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    In the same year, Sridevi played the definitive 'Yash Chopra heroine' in Chandni. She made famous the white chiffon saree that would become a hallmark of a Yash Chopra romance.

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    Lamhe (1991), was Sridevi's second film with Yash Chopra. It was among her career-best performances. She was again cast opposite Anil Kapoor and won a lot of acclaim for her portrayal of a mother and a daughter. She also won the Filmfare Best Actress Award for the movie, which many said was ahead of its time. It flopped at the box office.

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    Roop Ki Rani Choron Ka Raja (1993), produced by Boney Kapoor and featuring Sridevi and Anil Kapoor, was one of the most expensive movies of the '90s. However, the film failed at the box office.

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    Judaai (1997) featuring Sridevi, Anil Kapoor and Urmila Matondkar was Sridevi's last movie as romantic lead. She did not return to the big screen for the next 15 years.

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    In 2012, Sridevi made a comeback with English Vinglish as Shashi, the housewife struggling to learn English after being belittled by her family, Sridevi made a searing return to Bollywood. The following year, she also made an appearance in Bombay Talkies.

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    In 2017, Sridevi played the protagonist in Ravi Udyawar's MOM, co-starring with Nawazuddin Siddiqui and Akshaye Khanna.

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    Sridevi died in February in Dubai in 2018, where she attended a family wedding.

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    Sridevi married Boney Kapoor in 1996. Janhvi and Khushi are their two daughters. Janhvi made her Bollywood debut with Dhadak in 2018.

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