Born on July 4, 1954, actress Neena Gupta got into acting in the 1980s. In terms of talent, Neena Gupta knows no boundaries and made her mark with her role in Jaane Bhi Do Yaaron (1983), and won the 1994 National Film Award for best-supporting actress for her performance in Woh Chokri.
Neena Gupta was in a relationship with former West Indian cricketer Vivian Richards in the 1980s, though they never got married.
Neena Gupta and Vivian Richards have a daughter Masaba Gupta, who is now an established fashion designer.
In 2008, Neena Gupta married New Delhi-based Vivek Mehra, a chartered accountant and Partner with PwC India in a secret ceremony in the United States.
Neena Gupta has been known for leaving her mark on the small screen as well. In fact, she entered the television industry in the 1980s, a period when TV was described as an intelligent alternative of cinema.
Some of the shows that she did include Khandaan, Mirza Ghalib and Dard. Pictured: A rare childhood picture of Neena Gupta with her family.
In 1993, Neena Gupta came out with her telefilm Bazar Sitaram, which was appreciated with the National Film Award for the best first non-feature film. Pictured: Rare image of a young Neena Gupta with her father
If that was not enough, Neena Gupta went behind the camera and brought shows like Gumraah and Saans, which were rich in content and high on entertainment.
In the last two decades, the television industry has grown manifold and Neena Gupta said that the growth has its positives as well as negatives. "When something is young, it takes some time. it goes bad and comes up again. I think TV is going through that phase. There are some nice things and some not-so-nice things," she said.
At 59, with a motto to try different things always, Neena Gupta does not accept too many offers. "It is very tough to find something new every time. This is why I don't work much," said the actress.
Neena Gupta was 34 when she didn't shy away from doing the dance number Choli Ke Peeche with Madhuri Dixit in 1993 movie Khalnayak.
Neena Gupta, who was a part of the avant-garde movement - also known as the parallel movement - in Indian cinema, says she has never been in a better place as an actor. She feels television gave her a new lease of life.
In the 1970s and 1980s, when Shyam Benegal, Govind Nihalani and Kundan Shah spearheaded the parallel movement in Hindi cinema, the plum roles in all the prestigious realistic films went to Shabana Azmi and Smita Patil. Neena was left with the leftovers.
Neena Gupta, herself, had said once in an interview, "There was nothing for me then. The actor in me would have died if television had not come along."
Directing and acting in the serial Saans, which was about an extramarital affair way back in 1998 gave a new boost to Neena's career. But as far as cinema is concerned, she has always been in a dry zone.
But now Neena Gupta is happy with the slate of projects she has in her kitty. She even made a comeback to writing for Kehne Ko Humsafar Hai. In 2018, she did a small role in Veere Di Wedding, playing Sonam Kapoor's mom. She was also seen in Mulk, which starred Rishi Kapoor, and of course, Amit Sharma's Badhaai Ho.
Neena Gupta has joined Rohit Shetty's upcoming cop-drama Sooryavanshi and will be seen playing Akshay Kumar's mother. Neena is kicked to be a part of a big commercial movie as it will reach a wider audience. "I am feeling good and I'm very excited mainly because this kind of big commercial cinema is seen by a lot of people. Every actor wants to be seen by more people and appreciated by more people," Neena told PTI.
Here's wishing Neenaji good luck for her upcoming projects!
It's Neena Gupta's birthday today. The actress has worked in the Indian film industry for over 36 years now. Let's have a look at the actress' journey so far (All pics/Neena Gupta's Instagram account)
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