Okay, by now it should come as no surprise that I'm a fan of Bollywood movies. I mean, I'm a HUGE fan! Some of you may recall my post on favorite Bollywood music a few years ago (click here), as well of course as this here Model Spotlight series, in which more often than not I'm posting up some famous Indian beauty from the movie scene. And it's really a good thing I watch Bollywood, too, otherwise I would be missing out on so many hotties from the sub-continent. DAYUMMM! Case in point, today's entry.
Hometown: Bangalore, India
Accolades: 2005 "Model of the Year" - Kingfisher Fashion Awards; Filmfare award for "Best Female Debut" on the 2007 film, Om Shanti Om; and Filmfare award for "Best Actress" on the 2013 film, Goliyon Ki Raasleela: Ram-Leela.
Best Known: As Veronica in the hit Indian romantic comedy-drama, Cocktail (2012).
Current: Finalized filming on Piku, a comedy-drama starring alongside her childhood idol and legendary Bollywood actor, Amitabh Bachchan.
Born in Copenhagen in 1986, Deepika's parents returned home and settled in Bangalore just a year later to raise their daughter and, eventually, her little sister, Anisha, as well. Her mother was a travel agent, and her father the famous Indian pro badminton player, Prakash Padukone. And for a while there it looked as if Deepika would follow in her daddy's footsteps, becoming quite proficient at the sport of badminton, even to the point of competing on the national level. But in high school she realized her true dream was to become an actress, and so she dropped out of sports to focus on a career in modeling and movies.
After some commercial work that nonetheless brought her modest recognition locally in India, and a brief stint as a runway model, Deepika got her film debut starring in the title role of the 2006 hit film, Aishwarya. From there it was only upwards for the actress, who is today considered one of India's top paid actresses, not unlike another favorite Bollywood model/actress of mine, and previously profiled here on Model Spotlight--Priyanka Chopra.
|Deepika in Chandni Chowk to China (2009).|
Good. LORD! So happy I'm a man!
Despite my love of Bollywood, it was actually by accident that I became aware of Deepika Padukone. Back in 2009 I had heard of this quirky, bizarre Kung-Fu meets Bollywood movie called Chandni Chowk to China, starring the zany but gifted Indian actor and martial artist, Akshay Kumar. In it, Deepika plays dual roles as twin sisters--one sweet and wholesome, the other a twisted, leather-clad femme fatale--Sakhi and Suzy (aka, "Meow Meow"). The film, a sort of East meets Far East affair, also included Hong Kong action screen legend, Gordon Liu, which was pretty much why I went to see the movie in the only arthouse theater showing it in town.
Of course I loved it, but I was also immediately smitten with Ms. Padukone and reminded myself to seek out more of her movies in the future. And I'm glad I did! It seems she was in every third or fourth Indian movie I would see from 2009 onward, much like Priyanka Chopra at the time. My favorite Deepika Padukone movie is 2013's Chennai Express, a romantic dramedy (as most Bollywood movies seem to be these days) where she stars alongside my current favorite actor and Indian film mega star, Shahrukh Khan. It's on Netflix streaming right now (click here). I highly recommend you watch it!
|Deepika and Shahrukh in Chennai Express (2013).|
Currently, Deepika splits her time between her main residence in Mumbai where she is close to the film industry, and her hometown of Bengaluru (Bangalore) where her family still lives. She is a practicing Hindu and considers herself a religious and spiritual person, spending her free time doing charity work across the country when she is not starring in a role or doing promotional work. She is in the process now of preparing for the historical romance film, Bajirao Mastani, in which she will appear with, among others . . . Priyanka Chopra!!! The film is considered to be a big deal, keenly anticipated in India, and is scheduled for release a year from now on December 25, 2015.
Two of my favorite and lusted after Indian actresses in the same movie? Don't even bother asking--I'm so there for this!
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