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Memorable films

Priyanka Chopra


Upperstall profile by: Karan Bali aka TheThirdMan

Priyanka Chopra is yet another beauty queen who has entered films. A former Miss World, she is one of the most popular actresses in the Hindi film industry scenario today starring in some of the biggest films made over the last few years like Don (2006), Krrish (2006), Salaam-E-Ishq (2007), Love Story 2050 (2008) and Drona (2008). Though she still has some way to go as an actress, there is no doubt she is an absolute stunner in the looks and body department.

Priyanka was born on July 18, 1982. As her father was in the army, the family was never in one place, constantly shifting all over India. She even went to the United States as a young girl where she studied at the Newton North High School in Newton, Massachusetts and North Delta Senior Secondary School in North Delta before returning to India to finish her high schooling at the Army Public School in Bareilly. She then joined Jai Hind College in Mumbai but once she was crowned the Femina Miss India World and then Miss World itself, she dropped out of college. As she began her journey in the glamour world as a model, it was but natural that she began to be flooded with film offers.

Like Aishwarya Rai, also a former Miss World who begun her movie career with a Tamil film Iruvar (1997), Priyanka debuted with a Tamil film Thamizan (2002) opposite Vijay where she even sang a song in the film. The film proved to be a super hit though Priyanka received mixed reviews for her performance and in fact, a popular website reviewing the film declared that she showed no promise!

The Hero: Love Story of a Spy (2003) saw Priyanka make her Hindi film debut in a supporting role to Sunny Deol and Preity Zinta. In the key role of a doctor whom Sunny Deol uses but who nevertheless sacrifices her life for him, Priyanka managed to leave her mark on the film. She also received favourable feedback for her other film that year, the love triangle Andaaz co-starring Akshay Kumar and Lara Dutta. That year, Priyanka won the Filmfare Best Female Debut Award.

Priyanka really broke through the following year with Mujhse Shaadi Karogi opposite Salman Khan and Akshay Kumar and Aitraaz, co-starring Akshay Kumar and Kareena Kapoor. While the former was a typical David Dhawan comedy where she basically just had to look good and dance a bit, she actually stole the latter film from her more established co-stars. Aitraaz, 'inspired' from the Michael Douglas - Demi Moore starrer Disclosure sees Priyanka play Akshay's former girlfriend who opts for a career over him and when the two meet again with her as his boss and her having married a much older man for money, she tries coming on to him. It was an extremely bold role for an actress by Hindi film standards and it is to her credit that Priyanka makes the role her own. She went on to win the Filmfare Award For Best Villain's for the film, becoming only the second woman to do so following Kajol who had won it earlier for Gupt (1997).

Aitraaz remains Priyanka's best performance to date and subsequently though she has starred in some of the biggest films of Hindi cinema, none of them really have given her much scope as an actress. She has largely been required to fulfil the glamour quotient in these films, which largely have been hero-oriented like Waqt: The Race Against Time (2005), Bluffmaster (2005) and Don. But even here in films like Krrish, though a huge hit at the box-office, she was criticized for her looks, make-up and performance. And as and when the films did give her a meaty role like Yakeen (2005), a re-hashing of Shattered co-starring Arjun Rampal, she was just about so-so in the film and was unable to carry the film on her shoulders. She was, however, voted Sexiest Asian Woman of 2006 in Eastern Eye, an Asian newspaper published in Britain

Though very much a top star today, Priyanka's last few films like Salaam-E-Ishq (2007), Big Brother (2007), Love Story 2050 (2008), God Tussi Great Ho (2008) and Drona (2008) have not fared well at the box-office. But the success of films like Fashion and the Karan Johar production Dostana, where she has never looked better, have helped her to bounce right back. In fact, in Fashion Priyanka has got a lot of critical acclaim and has been sweeping the Best Actress Awards everywhere but honestly in spite of a sincere and earnest performance, one of her better ones, she fails to rise above the vastly overrated film and does get her thunder stolen by Kangna Ranaut.

Priyanka gave another sincere enough performance though she is miscast as a fiesty Marathi Mulgi in the Vishal Bhardwaj directed Kaminey (2009) co-starring Shahid Kapoor. She has acquited herself pretty well in her 12 avataars in What's Your Raashee (2009) even though the film proved to be a big disappointment as has the Yash Raj Films offering Pyaar Impossible (2010).

On the personal side, she was said to be seeing her Love Story 2050 co-star Harman Baweja after which her name has been linked among others with her Kaminey co-star Shahid Kapoor.





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