Madhur Bhandarkar is a three times National Award Winning Indian film director and script writer. He worked in a video cassette library in Khar, a suburb of Mumbai. This gave him access to a large collection of movies and he studied film-making through it. After trying his skills at production and various other stints including as assistant to film director Ashok Gaikwad, Bhandarkar landed up as an assistant to Ram Gopal Varma. He even played a small role in his 1995 film 'Rangeela'. In the same year he made a pilot episode of a television serial 'Apne Rang Hazaar' but did not find success. A couple of years later, he made his directorial debut with 'Trishakti', which took more than two years to make and released in 1999.
After two years he directed 'Chandni Bar' (2001) starring Tabu and Atul Kulkarni. The film was critically acclaimed success, which took Bhandarkar into the top league of filmmakers in Bollywood. He received his first National Award for this film and there on won National awards for his films 'Page-3' and 'Traffic Signal'. Madhur was conferred PL Deshpande Award a.k.a. Zenith Asia Award for significantly shaping the film making culture in his unique works and he has been described as The Film Maker of The First Decade of 21st Century. Zenith Asia Award was given to Madhur Bhandarkar and his film CHANDNI BAR was also screened during the fest amongst landmarked 25 films from the world cinema.
The National Film Archive of India (NFAI) which falls under Ministry of Information & Broadcasting, Government of India preserved all the films of the renowned Film-Maker. 'Corporate', 'Fashion' and 'Jail', are some of the other realistic films made by Madhur Bhandarkar.
Madhur, who is known for making out of league films, also directed a romantic comedy 'Dil Toh bachcha Hai Ji' starring Ajay Devgn, Shazahn Padamsee, Omi Vaidya, Shruti Hassan, Emraan Hashmi and Shraddha Das in the lead. His latest venture is 'Heroine', starring actress Kareena Kapoor Khan.
Bhandarkar is a school dropout. He came from a middle-class family. As a result, Madhur had to take up various jobs. He worked at a video store as an errand boy and dropped off cassettes to people from many walks of life including dance bar girls and film stars. He also sold chewing gum at traffic signals and worked as an assistant to small time directors for a paltry salary of INR1000. He also travelled to Muscat where his only sibling, elder sister was based in search of work. At time of his struggle, he travelled by bus and sometimes those who had done bit roles in his films would give him seat only to embarrass him.
He is a great devotee of Siddhivinayak and has been walking from his house in Khar, Mumbai to the temple for the past 16 years on every Tuesday. According to him, the film Corporate was his most difficult film as people in corporate world would shun him after he bared Page 3 culture in his earlier film. He took inspiration for Corporate from the Coke - Pepsi controversy. He has been invited to deliver lectures on corporate issues to management students after the release of Corporate. Bhandarkar married his girlfriend Renu Namboodiri on 15 December 2003 in Mumbai. They have a daughter named Siddhi.