Mumtaz Jahan Begum Dehlavi, known by her stage name `Madhubala`, was a popular Hindi movie actress. She starred in several successful movies in the 1950s and early 1960s, many of which have attained a classic status. As a star, Madhubala did ascend to the top of the industry, performing alongside the most popular actors of the period including Ashok Kumar, Raj Kapoor, Rehman, Pradeep Kumar, Shammi Kapoor, Dilip Kumar, Sunil Dutt and Dev Anand.
She also appeared alongside many notable leading ladies of the time including Kamini Kaushal, Suraiya, Geeta Bali, Nalini Jaywant and Nimmi. The directors she worked with were amongst the most prolific and respected: Mehboob Khan (Amar), Guru Dutt (Mr. & Mrs. '55), Kamal Amrohi (Mahal) and K. Asif (Mughal-e-Azam).
She also ventured into production with the ffilm `Naata` (1955), in which she also performed. Her career suffered in the mid-1950s but she turned it around in 1958, with a string of hit films including `Howrah Bridge`, `Phagun`, `Kalapani`, `Chalti Ka Naam Gaadi` and `Barsaat Ki Raat`. Consolidating these successes, she went on to appear in the epic mega-budget historical, `Mughal-e-Azam`, regarded as the crowning glory of her career, as also the decade of filmmaking in India.