Rekha is one of the rare celebrities who have been extremely vocal about their personal lives, and yet so little is known about it. Her career and life have been marred with numerous ups and downs and here we take a look at her journey through photos.
Born to actors Pushpavalli and Gemini Ganesan, Bhanurekha Ganesan started working in films when she was just 4 years old. Her first project was the Telugu movie Inti Guttu.
Here we look at a photo from the time when she was a child.
In 1970, she made her Hindi movie debut with Sawan Bhadon, which got people to notice her camera presence.
While things seemed to be going well for her, she would often be criticised for not looking like a "quintessential movie heroine", a concept we are still struggling to get rid of.
Rekha always seemed unhinged, and openly talked about issues. She also discussed how she underwent physical transformation through yoga and worked on her Hindi.
Rekha worked on changing herself and it was for everyone to see (should mention here that we think she has always looked gorgeous).
Career-wise, she was only climbing up. With movies like Muqaddar Ka Sikandar and Khubsoorat, she had started establishing herself as one of the biggest names in the industry.
Her true breakthrough, however, came with the movie Umrao Jaan, for which she was presented with the National Award for Best Actress.
It was around this time that Silsila also released. This was the last movie where she was seen alongside Amitabh Bachchan, with whom she was linked relentlessly and emphatically.
There were also rumours that she got married to Vinod Mehra, but she denied the same.
While there was no denying the fact that she was the reigning queen of the industry, a lot of unfortunate things happened in Rekha's personal life during the years that followed.
She got married to business Mukesh Agarwal in 1990, who died by suicide the same year. In what was truly an unfortunate turn of events, she was blamed for his death and his family members went as far as calling her a "dayan".
After this, she stopped getting good roles as many producers were scared of working with her. This led to a decline in her career.
She started doing 1-2 movies per year and even those did not get her much appreciation. Her pairing against Akshay Kumar in Khiladiyon Ka Khiladi got a lot of headlines though. She also received a Filmfare award for that role.
Beyond this, she did not get many meaty roles as the protagonist but did great work in films like Zubeidaa and Lajja.
Fans don't know much about what's going on with her life right now, but Rekha continues to make appearances on reality shows and award functions.
Incredibly talented, gorgeous, and fascinating to say the least.