It is quite well known that Rekha had dubbed for the late Sridevi’s part in the 1986 Amitabh Bachchan-starrer, Aakhri Raasta.
But the connection between the two iconic actresses goes further back in time.
Sridevi and Rekha shared a deep bond — one that was not just professional or personal; it was something greater.
“I’ve always loved that girl (Sridevi). She had a special spark about her. I believe after Vyjanthimala and Hema Malini, Sridevi was the third Tamil superstar in Hindi cinema,” says Rekha, adding, “I don’t think I was anywhere near these actresses!”
The 63-year-old actress specially singles out Sridevi’s dancing skills.
“She was a much better dancer than I was. I just managed to look like a dancer without being one,” comments Rekha, who, interestingly, was instrumental in facilitating Sridevi’s stardom in Bollywood.
Yesteryear actor Jeetendra, who has worked in 18 films with Sridevi and in 30 films with Rekha, reveals that Rekha was the first choice for Himmatwala — the film that catapulted Sridevi to stardom. But as fate would have it, Rekha was committed to another project at the time.
“That’s when we decided to launch a new girl. And the rest is history! Aise ittefaq aksar hote hain hamare industry mein (such coincidences often happen in our industry),” shares Jeetendra.
Similarly, “Rajesh Khanna and I were college friends and we entered the film industry together. I was supposed to do the film Raaz, but when I couldn’t do it due to date issues, I sent producer G. P. Sippy to him. The rest is, again, history,” he reveals.