Rani Mukerji Birthday Special: A riveting actor who continues to be relevant and rousing!

Updated: 21 March, 2020 11:44 IST | mid-day online correspondent | Mumbai

Rani Mukerji, who celebrates her birthday today, is not only a fine actor, but also a performer who continues to shine and scintillate with her film choices!

Rani Mukerji Picture Courtesy: Mid-day Archives
Rani Mukerji Picture Courtesy: Mid-day Archives

It was the year 1997 when Rani Mukerji made her debut with Raja Ki Aayegi Baaraat. The film may not have done or aged well, but she established herself as an actor that can be relied upon. Actresses in Hindi Cinema have seldom begun their careers early in their lives, merely in their teens, and Mukerji was no less. Akin to Karisma Kapoor, Raveena Tandon and even seasoned and senior stars like Sridevi, she too had a brush with stardom pretty early.

Rani Mukerji Birthday Special

Every star has one claim to fame that makes her or him what they are today. For Mukerji, that film was Vikram Bhatt's Ghulam. When actors were scoffed at for their unconventional looks, like Amitabh Bachchan and Shah Rukh Khan, the actress had to hear mixed responses for her voice.

Bhatt wasn't really happy with the way she spoke and decided to get a dubbing artist for her. Immediately after the release and success of the film, she was all over the place, and she became the Khandala Girl.

Rani Mukerji Birthday Special

And in the same year, she delivered another blockbuster in the form of Kuch Kuch Hota Hai, where she played the third bead in the rosary in the romance of Rahul and Anjali. We saw the soft and tender side of her, and the tears were as charming as the smile, and so was the husky baritone.

Rani Mukerji Birthday Special

She had a lot of low post the beginning of the Millennium and rediscovered her voice as an artist with Shaad Ali's Saathiya. She confessed in an interview about having made incorrect and inconsequential film choices, and it was only after the incessant requests from the fans that she became careful and cautious about her celluloid choices and characters. She may have faltered but never faded away.

Rani Mukerji Birthday Special

But she wasn't just limited to romancing her heroes; there was palpable pain in her performance in a tender film like Black, where she played a blind, mute, and a deaf girl, who's guided by her eccentric teacher. If films like Ghulam, Kuch Kuch Hota Hai, and Hum Tum made her a star, Black proved she was also an actor and that too a brave and bold one.

Rani Mukerji Birthday Special

As much as her professional life was out there in public, her private life was as surreptitious. She tied the knot with filmmaker Aditya Chopra and it was a clandestine wedding ceremony, just like the filmmaker himself. To argue, she is perhaps the only actor who continues to stay rousing and relevant among her contemporaries. Films like Talaash, Bombay Talkies, Mardaani, Hichki, and Mardaani 2 have proven she still has the same magic and mojo she showed back then. The critical and commercial success of these titles was entirely shouldered on her resounding performances.

Talking about her experience of working with Kamal Haasan in Hey Ram, she said how the actor asked her to be tall with her acting, not height. That pretty much sums up her journey till now. She may not be the tallest one around but could make a lot of the actors around appear like a dwarf when it comes to acting. Happy Birthday!

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First Published: 21 March, 2020 08:02 IST

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