By Srijony Das Last Updated:
Bollywood is one industry blessed with an unending outpour of talents coming to join in from various generations. While some talents succeed in getting their desired fame, others succumb to the pressures and are quite easily side-lined. However, there are also some sets of actors who, at their very peak of success and fame, find that they have an equally talented contemporary actor, quick to fill in the gaps left by them. One such pair of leading actors from the glorious 80s decade of Bollywood has been the actresses, late Sridevi and Madhuri Dixit.
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While the duo may have never openly opted for ugly cat-fights, the constant strenuous tiff between Madhuri Dixit and Sridevi was still vividly proclaimed. The duo being exact contemporaries of one another, had engaged in cut-throat competition for films. However, there was once a moment when these two leading divas kept their rivalry aside and rejoiced as friends in each other’s happiness. Well, it happened so that when Madhuri Dixit married the love of her life, Dr. Shriram Nene on October 17, 1999, the wedding reception was also attended by her nemesis, Sridevi and her hubby, Boney Kapoor along with their eldest daughter, Jahnvi Kapoor. Their picture together captures the subtle moment when the contemporary rivals had perhaps engaged as best friends.
There was a time when the diva, Sridevi took a dig at Madhuri Dixit for copying her acting style in the latter’s then-released film, Khalnayak. In a candid interview with Stardust Magazine in 1994, Sridevi was asked to comment on how she felt when Madhuri replaced her and took away the tag of being the number one actress of the time. To this, Sridevi quite subtly highlighted how Madhuri had imitated her style of acting in her then-newly released film and therefore been able to create the top position for herself. Then, reinstating how she would never do such a thing to reach the top of the ladder, Sridevi mentioned:
“I've heard about this but to be honest, I've not seen Khalnayak. I think that is perfectly alright. She is a professional actress and I suppose that she did what her director asked her to do. She is not the only one to do it. A lot of other stars also imitate the distinct styles of prominent stars. What's the big deal if she did a take-off on me? Even mimicry artists are aping stars all the time. It is their profession. But frankly speaking, I'd never do it.”
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One of the other famously known gossips of the 80s Bollywood was about the rumoured love affair between Sanjay Dutt and Madhuri Dixit. However, it is also true that one should never show their weak point to their opponent. Something similar happened with Madhuri Dixit as well, when her arch-actress, Sridevi had taken a nasty dig at her affair with Sanjay Dutt and explained how she would never engage in any small talk with Sanjay or any of her co-actor for that matter. For the unversed, Sridevi, too, had starred opposite Sanjay Dutt in the 1993 released film, Gumrah. In her words:
“See, like I said earlier, I am a person who doesn't mingle much. I admit that I didn't communicate much with Sanju but then I am like that with everybody. I didn't know him very well. Even during the making of the film, we barely spoke but for small talk. You know, I really don't know what to talk to people, I am not too friendly with. As for keeping him waiting, I didn't do it deliberately. There must have been some legitimate reasons for the same.”
Unfortunately, the tiff between the two leading actresses did not keep up for a long time, as Sridevi passed away in 2018. However, in her later years after quitting mainstream cinema, Sridevi was often spotted with Madhuri Dixit and the duo appeared to be on perfectly friendly terms with one another. It was two years later, in 2020, that during an interview with India Today, Madhuri had perhaps for the first time spoken about the rumoured rivalry between her and Sridevi. Rubbishing it to be never true, Madhuri mentioned:
“Sridevi was a thorough professional. She gave her whole life to her work. I have not done even a fifth of the films she has done. But there was no rivalry, we’re not racehorses, so we don’t think about who is going to come first”.
What do you think about Sridevi attending the marriage of Madhuri Dixit?
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