Madhubala Birth Anniversary: Lesser-known facts about Bollywood's 'Marilyn Monroe'

Madhubala was born on 14th February 1933 in Delhi to Ataullah Khan and Ayesha Begum. She was the fifth of eleven siblings. Madhubala was a true prodigy. Born in a time of turmoil, she wanted to work from a very early age in order to provide for the family after their house was burned down in 1944 Bombay Explosion.

The 'Venus of Bollywood' started her career in Bollywood as a child artist. Her debut film was 'Basant' which was released in 1942, Madhubala was just 9 years old at that time and was credited as 'Baby Mumtaz'. Interestingly, she became friends with another famous child actor of that era, 'Baby Mahjabeen'.

Mahjabeen went on to become Meena Kumari, one of the biggest stars of that time. Madhubala appeared in several Bollywood films as a child actor before making her debut as a lead actress with 'Neel Kamal'.

Kidar Sharma, the director and producer of 'Neel Kamal' went through a lot of troubles while filming this classic. Apparently the producers of the film were not happy with newcomers as the lead actors after which Kidar decided to produce the movie himself.

Madhubala's first few films tanked at the box-office and she was in dire need of a hit to revive her career. 'Lal Dupatta' was her first successful film but her big break came through Kamal Amrohi's 'Mahal'.

The leading lady made a few headlines when she was casted in 'Hanste Aansoo', the first ever Bollywood film which got Adults Only certification from the Censor Board.

Madhubala was a true global superstar. Many Hollywood magazines featured the talented actress. Reportedly, Academy Award winning director Frank Capra wanted to cast Madhubala in a film but the actress refused,

She married legendary playback singer Kishore Kumar back in 1960. Madhubala breathed her last on on 23rd February 1969 after a prolonged illness. She was diagnosed with Ventricular Septal defect due to which the renowned star left the world at the age of 36.

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Free Press Journal