Then & Now


Zeenat Aman cultivated a sexual persona in Bollywood well ahead of its times in a string of movies in roles that ranged from a gold digger in Roti Kapada Aur Makan, a hippie, in Hare Rama Hare Krishna to a hooker in Manoranjan.

Birthdate: November 19, 1951

Birthplace: Germany

Siblings: Only child

Education: Graduated from St. Xavier’s School in Mumbai; college in Los Angeles

First job: Journalist for Femina, followed by modeling.

Achievements: Starred in 81 movies in 1970s and 1980s. Second runner-up Miss India Contest; Miss Asia Pacific (1970).

Debut film: Hulchul 1971

First Blockbuster: Hare Rama Hare Krishna with Dev Anand 1972

Marriage: Mazhar Khan who died in 1998

Children: Two sons

Nickname: Babushka

Marital status: Widowed


Zeenat Aman’s last movie in her heydays was Gawahi (1989). She now lives with her two teenage sons and makes frequent social appearances, often at Bollywood premiers. She made her first reappearance on the screen in 1999 in Bhopal Express (1999), followed byBoom (2003). In 2006, she acted in Jaana: Let’s Fall In Love with Rajesh Khanna. Another movie Sirf Romance: Love by Chance will be released this year.

After the death of her actor husband Mazhar Khan in 1998 she had a very ugly public spat with her in laws and fought them over custody of one of her children.

She looked back in an interview recently on her sultry reputation: “Now that I’m a mom I look back at certain scenes and feel they were a little too sensuous. Fortunately my sons are so much into their own lives, they aren’t interested in my films, though the elder one has seen some of my films.”

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