Kajol Devgan Mukherjee was born on August 5, 1975 in Mumbai. At the tender age of 17, when most girls her age were putting up posters of their favourite Bollywood stars, she plunged into the film industry with a role in Bekhudi. Just one year later, she had her first hit alongside Shah Rukh Khan, with Baazigar.
What could have made Kajol's entry into cinema a little easier was the family she came from. Her mother Tanuja had long been respected as an actor, her father Shomu was a producer, her aunt Nutan regularly brought home Filmfare Best Actress awards, while her grandmother Shobhna Samarth had been one of Hindi cinema's pioneers. How, then, could Kajol go wrong?
Once in the industry, working alongside Shah Rukh helped immensely. The two went on to deliver some of Bollywood's biggest hits, from Dulhaniya Le Jayenge to Kuch Kuch Hota Hai, which helped add to the number of Best Actress Awards piling up on the family mantelpiece.
After Kabhi Khushi Kabhie Gham in 2001, Kajol took a five-year break and made an astonishing comeback with Fanaa, which got her another Filmfare award. She continues to wow audiences, be it by herself, or her work alongside actor husband Ajay Devgan. Today, she is understandably recognised as one of our most successful actresses.
Too bad the same can't be said of her younger sister Tanisha.
Text: Preetee Brahmbhatt | Photograph: Getty Images
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