Born - August 15, 1947 in Ranaghat, West Bengal, India
Birth Name - Rakhee Majumdar
Occupation - Actress
Nationality - Indian
Years Active - 1967-2003
Height - 5' 9" (1.75 m)
Spouse(s) - Ajay Biswas (m. 1963; div. 1965)
Gulzar (m. 1973)
Raakhee Gulzar (born Raakhee Majumdar on 15 August 1947 and widely known merely as Raakhee) is a former Indian film actress who has primarily appeared in Hindi films, as well as in many Bengali films. In four decades of acting, she has won three Filmfare Awards and one National Film Award, apart from many other awards. At Filmfare, Raakhee has been nominated 16 times in all (8 times for Best Actress and 8 times for Best Supporting Actress), making her the most-nominated performer in the female categories, alongside actress Madhuri Dixit.
Rakhee was born in a Bengali family at Ranaghat in the Nadia district, West Bengal, in the early hours of 15 August 1947, just hours after the declaration of independence of India. She received her early education in a local girls' school. Her father had a flourishing shoe business in his native village in East Bengal, modern-day Bangladesh, before the partition of India, and thereafter he settled in West Bengal. While still a teenager, Raakhee had an arranged marriage to Bengali journalist/film director Ajay Biswas, which ended shortly.
At the start of her film career, she dropped her surname and was mentioned in film credits only as "Raakhee", by which name she attained stardom, but upon marrying lyricist-director Gulzar, she took that as her surname and is credited thereafter as 'Raakhee Gulzar'.
In 1967, the 20-year-old Raakhee Gulzar (also credited as "Rakhee") acted in her first Bengali film "Badhu Baran", after which she was offered the lead role in her first Hindi film in 1970, Rajshri Productions' "Jeevan Mrityu" with Dharmendra.
In 1971, Rakhee played a double role opposite Shashi Kapoor in "Sharmilee", and in the same year she also acted in "Lal Patthar" and "Paras"; all three films were popular and she therefore became one of the leading actress of Hindi Cinema in the 1970s. The films "Shehzada" (1972) and "Aankhon Aankhon Mein" (1972) - both showcased her comic abilities. She displayed versatility with "Heera Panna" (1973), "Daag: A Poem of Love" (1973), "Hamare Tumhare" (1979), "Aanchal" (1980), "Shriman Shrimati" (1982) and "Taaqat" (1982). She regards her performances in "Blackmail" (1973), "Tapasya" (1976) and "Aanchal" to be her best performances. She acted with Dev Anand in "Heera Panna", "Banarasi Babu" (1973), "Joshila" (1973) and "Lootmaar" (1980).
Rakhee worked with Shashi Kapoor in 10 released films, including "Sharmelee" (1971), "Jaanwar Aur Insaan" (1972), "Kabhi Kabhie" (1976), "Doosra Aadmi" (1977), the critically acclaimed "Trishna" (1978), "Baseraa" (1981), "Bandhan Kuchchey Dhaagon Ka" (1983), "Zameen Aasmaan" (1984), and "Pighalta Aasman" (1985). She also acted opposite Kapoor in the film "Ek Do Teen Chaar", which was produced in 1980 but never released. Her other unreleased film is "Majnoon" (1979) though the songs were released. Her films with Amitabh Bachchan include "Kabhie Kabhie" (1976), "Muqaddar Ka Sikander" (1978), "Kasme Vaade" (1978), "Trishul" (1978), "Kaala Patthar" (1979), "Jurmana" (1979), "Barsaat Ki Ek Raat" (1981), and "Bemisal" (1982). In 1981, the 23-year-old aspiring director Anil Sharma asked her to star in the leading role in his debut film "Shradhanjali"; Raakhee agreed to take the part despite lack of funding for the film project, and the film was successful. She acted in other Bengali films; "Paroma" (1984) and was awarded the BFJA Award for Best Actress. Her last film as the lead female heroine was "Pighalta Aasman" in 1985 with Shashi Kapoor.
In films such as "Jurmana", her name is credited ahead of the heroes in the credits of the film. She at the peak of her career as heroine, surprised everyone by agreeing to play strong characters as sister-in-law to Rajesh Khanna in "Aanchal" (1980), which was followed by playing sister-in-law to Shashi Kapoor in "Shaan" (1980), mother to Amitabh Bachchan in "Shakti" (1982), sister-in-law to Mithun Chakraborty in "Dhuan" and mother to Rishi Kapoor in "Yeh Vaada Raha" (1982).
Towards the late 1980s and 1990s she played strong character roles as the elderly mother—usually a bereaved and bitter widow whose husband died at the hands of ruthless villains—or a woman of principles in commercially successful films such as "Ram Lakhan" (1989), "Anari" (1993), "Baazigar" (1993), "Khalnayak" (1993), "Karan Arjun" (1995), "Border" (1997), "Soldier" (1998), "Ek Rishtaa: The Bond of Love" (2001) and "Dil Ka Rishta" (2002).
Her last film was "Shubho Mahurat" in 2003, for which she won the National Film Award for Best Supporting Actress. She has since retired from the film industry.
|1967||Badhu Bharan||Bengali film|
|1968||Baghini||Rakhee Biswas||Bengali film|
|1969||The Gold Medal||Shobha/Dimple|
|1971||Reshma Aur Shera||Gopal's Wife|
|1972||Shaadi Ke Baad||Shobha|
|1972||Janwar Aur Insaan|
|1972||Aankhon Aankhon Mein||Parvati|
|1976||Tapasya||Indrani Sinha "Indu"|
|1976||Kabhi Kabhie||Pooja Khanna|
|1978||Trishna||Aarti S. Gupta|
|1978||Muqaddar Ka Sikandar||Kaamna|
|1979||Kaala Patthar||Dr. Sudha Sen|
|1980||Hum Kadam||Indu Gupta|
|1981||Chameli Memsaab||Bengali film|
|1981||Dhuaan||Rani Gayatri Saxena|
|1981||Barsaat Ki Ek Raat||Rajni|
|1981||Baseraa||Sharda Balraj Kohli|
|1982||Yeh Vaada Raha||Mrs. Sharda Rai Bahadur|
|1982||Bemisal||Kavita Chaturvedi (Sakhi)|
|1982||Dil Aakhir Dil Hai||Kusum Desai|
|1983||Bandhan Kuchchey Dhaagon Ka||Bhavna|
|1984||Zindagi Jeene Ke Liye|
|1984||Anand Aur Anand||Mrs. Arun Anand|
|1987||Muqaddar Ka Faisla||Laxmi|
|1989||Ram Lakhan||Mrs. Sharda Pratap Singh|
|1990||Jeevan Ek Sangharsh||Dharam Verma|
|1993||Khal Nayak||Mrs. Aarti Prasad|
|1993||Dil Ki Baazi||Nirmaladevi|
|1993||Baazigar||Mrs. Shobha Sharma|
|1994||Phiriye Dao||Arjun's mother||Bengali film|
|1995||Karan Arjun||Durga Singh|
|1997||Jeevan Yudh||Mrs. Rai|
|1997||Ankhon Mein Tum Ho||Ranimaa (Mrs. Burman)|
|1998||Sham Ghansham||Ganga Satyadev Singh|
|1999||Baadshah||Chief Minister Gayatri Bachchan|
|2001||Ek Rishtaa: The Bond of Love||Pratima Kapoor|
|2003||Talaash: The Hunt Begins||Purnima|
|2003||Dil Ka Rishta||Mrs. Sharma|
|2003||Shubho Mahurat||Ranga Pishima||Bengali film|
Awards and Nominations
- 1973 - Filmfare Award for Best Supporting Actress for "Daag: A Poem of Love"
- 1973 - BFJA Award, Best Supporting Actress (Hindi) for "Daag: A Poem of Love"
- 1974 - National Film Award, special souvenir for her role in "27 Down"
- 1976 - Filmfare Award for Best Actress for "Tapasya"
- 1984 - BFJA Award, Best Actress for "Parama"
- 1989 - Filmfare Award for Best Supporting Actress for "Ram Lakhan"
- 2003 - National Film Award for Best Supporting Actress for the Bengali film "Shubho Mahurat"
- 2003 - Padma Shri Award
- 1972 - Filmfare Nomination as Best Actress for "Aankhon Aankhon Mein"
- 1976 - Filmfare Nomination as Best Actress for "Kabhie Kabhie"
- 1977 - Filmfare Nomination as Best Actress for "Doosra Aadmi"
- 1977 - Filmfare Nomination as Best Supporting Actress for "Doosra Aadmi"
- 1978 - Filmfare Nomination as Best Actress for "Trishna"
- 1979 - Filmfare Nomination as Best Actress for "Jurmana"
- 1981 - Filmfare Nomination as Best Actress for "Baseraa"
- 1983 - Filmfare Nomination as Best Actress for "Shakti"
- 1985 - Filmfare Nomination as Best Supporting Actress for "Saaheb"
- 1993 - Filmfare Nomination as Best Supporting Actress for "Anari"
- 1995 - Filmfare Nomination as Best Supporting Actress for "Karan Arjun"
- 1997 - Filmfare Nomination as Best Supporting Actress for "Border"
- 1998 - Filmfare Nomination as Best Supporting Actress for "Soldier"