Preity Zinta

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Posted by bender 03/17/2009 @ 18:09

Tags : preity zinta, actors and actresses, entertainment

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Preity's retail therapy for singles - Times of India
We spotted our dimpled darling Preity Zinta, ambling around the famous Nelson Mandela SQ. doing some quick fix shopping before boarding a flight to Durban. She was looking for a pair of designer sunglasses, we think. To hide a pretty tear? Maybe....
Preity ready to wait for the best - Oneindia
Preity Zinta dimpled her way into the hearts of million of fans with the Perk commercial directed by Shekhar Kapoor more than a decade back. Today she is considered amongst the most respected actress of Bollywood as she has made a place for herself as...
Preity Zinta's Single Again! - Desi Hits!
I've got great news for every living breathing single male! Preity Zinta is back on the market! That's right, after four years, Preity Zinta and Ness Wadia are no more! You had to have seen this coming though. They were seen out together less and less....
Paparazzi follow Freida to the loo - Oneindia
She has race passed veteran actresses like Shilpa Shetty and Preity Zinta as far as bagging lucrative Hollywood films is concerned. And the kind of interest the paparazzi have on her at present is something no Indian actress has ever experienced....
Slumdog-star wants to be Preity Zinta! - Times of India
Apparently when Rubina was quizzed on her favourite actress, and who she'd would like to grow up to become, she quickly said, “Preity Zinta.” Well, we're sure no one out there is really surprised. Least of all PZ. Wattodo? The Zinta-dil lady has such...
Preity missed IPL closing ceremony for Ness - Oneindia
Katrina Kaif may have given a sizzling performance during the closing ceremony of the IPL but fans wondered where was Preity Zinta. The co-owner of the Kings XI Punjab was nowhere to be seen when her team was being awarded the Kingfisher Fair Play...
Bollywood's recent breakups - World News
By Rupsa Shaid-Kareena, Priyanka-Harman, Preity Zinta-Ness Wadia, there is long list of latest breakups in the tinsel town. The latest story revolves around Salman Khan and Katrina Kaif. Both the stars have reportedly ended their four years...
Preity severing ties with Ness Wadia? - Oneindia
After revealing to the world that she is single again, actress Preity Zinta seems to have severed ties with her long-time boyfriend Ness Wadia. Preity recently said that she and Ness are very much together as far as their professional relationship is...
More than 'just good friends' in Bollywood - Reuters India
I do see some change in this attitude though, and Preity Zinta is a good example. Zinta, 34 has been pretty open about her relationship with Wadia scion Ness Wadia. Last week, she admitted she was single again – without giving too many details....
Bobs was cricket's live commentator - Times of India
Our filmis Shilpa Shetty, Preity Zinta, Juhi Chawla and SRK have invested big bucks in India's favourite sport, but you can also find some of the biggest and most die-hard cricket fans in some of our other B-town folks. One who tops the list is Bobby...

Preity Zinta

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Preity Zinta (Hindi: प्रीति ज़िंटा, pronounced ; born January 31, 1975) is an Indian film actress. She has appeared in Hindi films of Bollywood, as well as Telugu, Punjabi and English language films. After graduating with a degree in criminal psychology, Zinta made her acting debut in Dil Se in 1998 followed by a role in Soldier the same year. These performances earned her a Filmfare Best Female Debut Award, and she was later recognised for her role as a teenage single mother in Kya Kehna (2000). She subsequently played a variety of character types, and in doing so has been credited with changing the image of a Hindi film heroine.

Zinta received her first Filmfare Best Actress Award in 2003 for her performance in the drama Kal Ho Naa Ho. She went on to play the lead female role in two consecutive annual top-grossing films in India: the science fiction film Koi... Mil Gaya, her biggest commercial success, and the star-crossed romance Veer-Zaara, which earned her critical acclaim. She was later noted for her portrayal of independent, modern Indian women in Salaam Namaste and Kabhi Alvida Naa Kehna, top-grossing productions in overseas markets. These accomplishments have established her as a leading actress of Hindi cinema. Her first international film role was in the Canadian film Heaven on Earth, for which she was awarded the Best Actress (Silver Hugo) award at the 2008 Chicago International Film Festival.

In addition to movie acting, Zinta has written a series of columns for BBC News Online South Asia, is a regular stage performer, and along with boyfriend Ness Wadia she is a co-owner of the Indian Premier League cricket team Kings XI Punjab. She is known in the Indian media for publicly speaking her mind and openly expressing her opinions, occasionally sparking controversy. These controversies include her being the only witness not to retract in court her earlier statements against the Indian mafia during the 2003 Bharat Shah case, for which she was awarded the Godfrey Phillips National Bravery Award.

Zinta was born into a Hindu Rajput family from Rohru in Shimla district, Himachal Pradesh. Her father, Durganand Zinta, was an officer in the Indian Army. He died in a car accident when she was 13 years old; the accident also involved her mother, Nilprabha, who was severely injured and consequently remained bedridden for two years. Zinta called the tragic accident and her father's death a significant turning point in her life, which forced her to mature rapidly. She has two brothers; Deepankar and Manish, a year older and a year younger respectively. Deepankar is a commissioned officer in the Indian Army, while Manish lives in California.

Zinta, who describes herself as a tomboy as a child, has emphasised her father's military background as having a lasting impression on how family life was conducted. He asserted the importance of discipline and punctuality to the children. She studied at the Convent of Jesus and Mary boarding school in Shimla. Although she confesses to loneliness in the boarding school, she noted that it was compensated by her finding a "... perfect set of friends" there. As a student, she developed a love for literature, particularly the works of William Shakespeare and poetry. According to Zinta, she enjoyed schoolwork and received good grades; in her free time she played sports, especially basketball.

Upon graduating from the boarding school at age 18, Zinta enrolled at St Bede's College in Shimla. She graduated college with an English honours degree, and then started a graduate programme in psychology. She earned a postgraduate degree in criminal psychology, but later took up modelling. Zinta's first television commercial was for Perk chocolates, the result of a chance meeting with a director at a friend's birthday party in 1996. The director persuaded Zinta to audition for the spot, and she was selected. Afterwards, she appeared in other catalogues and commercials, including one for the soap Liril.

In 1997, Zinta met film-maker Shekhar Kapur when she accompanied a friend to an audition, and was asked if she would audition too. Upon seeing her audition, Kapur insisted that she become an actress. She was originally scheduled to make her screen debut in Kapur's Tara Rum Pum Pum opposite Hrithik Roshan, but the filming was cancelled. Kapur later recommended her for director Mani Ratnam's movie Dil Se.

Zinta commenced shooting for Kundan Shah's Kya Kehna, whose release was delayed until 2000. The delay of another film, Soldier, meant that her first release was Dil Se (1998) opposite Shahrukh Khan and Manisha Koirala. She was introduced as Preeti Nair, a middle-class Delhi girl and Khan's fiancée. The film was considered an unusual launch for a newcomer, as her role called for only 20 minutes of screen time. However, she was eventually noticed for her role, particularly for the forthright character she played. Her scene with Khan, in which she asked him, "Are you a virgin?", became well-known, and her portrayal earned her a Filmfare Best Supporting Actress Award nomination. She played her first leading role in the action-drama Soldier (1998), a commercial hit of the year. She won the Filmfare Best Female Debut Award for her performance in both Dil Se and Soldier.

Zinta next acted in two Telugu films, Premante Idera (1998), opposite Venkatesh; and Raja Kumarudu (1999), opposite Mahesh Babu. She followed with the leading role in the thriller Sangharsh, alongside Akshay Kumar. The film, based on The Silence of the Lambs (1991), was directed by Tanuja Chandra and written by Mahesh Bhatt. Zinta portrayed the character of Reet Oberoi, a CBI officer who falls in love with a captured killer played by Kumar. The film was not a box-office success, although Zinta's performance was appreciated by critics.

Zinta's first role in 2000 was in the drama Kya Kehna, which unexpectedly became a box-office success. The film addressed themes of single parenthood and teenage pregnancy, and gained Zinta wider recognition from the public as well as film critics. Her portrayal of a teenage single mother who fights social prejudice earned her several award nominations, including her first nomination for Best Actress at the Filmfare Awards. India Today reported that Zinta belonged to a new breed of Hindi film actors that breaks away from character stereotypes.

Later that year, Zinta starred in Vidhu Vinod Chopra's drama Mission Kashmir alongside Sanjay Dutt and Hrithik Roshan. Set in the valley of Kashmir during the Indo-Pakistani conflicts, the film dealt with the topic of terrorism and crime. Zinta's role was that of Sufiya Parvez, a TV reporter and Roshan's childhood love. A review in The Hindu said about her performance, "Preity Zinta is her usual cherubic self and lends colour to the otherwise serious proceedings". It was an economic success, becoming the third-highest grossing film of the year in India.

In 2001, Zinta earned positive reviews for her role in Farhan Akhtar's National Film Award-winning Dil Chahta Hai, co-starring Aamir Khan, Saif Ali Khan and Akshaye Khanna. Depicting the contemporary routine life of Indian affluent youth, it is set in modern-day urban Mumbai and focuses on a major period of transition in the lives of three young friends. Zinta starred as Aamir Khan's love interest, Shalini. According to critics, the film broke new ground by showing Indian youth as they are today. Despite the critical reception, it was only a moderate box office success in India; it performed well in the big cities but failed in the rural areas, which was attributed by critics to the urban-oriented lifestyle depicted in the movie. Rediff.com wrote of Zinta that she "... is beautiful and vibrant, wavering between endearingly naive and confused".

Three more 2001 releases featured Zinta, including Abbas-Mustan's romantic drama Chori Chori Chupke Chupke, which was released after a one-year delay due to the trial of producer Bharat Shah. This film was one of the first Bollywood movies to address the controversial issue of surrogate childbirth. Zinta's performance as Madhubala, a golden-hearted prostitute hired as a surrogate mother, earned her a Filmfare Best Supporting Actress nomination. Rediff.com noted, "Preity Zinta, who clearly has the meatiest part of all, makes the best of it. Her transformation from the cocky and unabashed prostitute to a sensitive and warm person is amazingly believable." Following her portrayal of a range of characters in Kya Kehna, Sangharsh and Chori Chori Chupke Chupke, Zinta was often recognised for her versatility as an actress. Critics attributed her roles in these films as to establishing a new image for leading actresses in Bollywood.

Zinta was the female lead in India's three highest-grossing films of 2003: The Hero: Love Story of a Spy, Koi... Mil Gaya and Kal Ho Naa Ho. The Hero, co-starring Sunny Deol and Priyanka Chopra, is a patriotic drama about a spy network involving terrorists and an Indian army officer. Zinta played the part of Reshma, a villager who falls in love with the officer and becomes part of this network. The film, involving stunts never seen before in the cinematic history of Bollywood, became the most expensive Hindi film ever produced at the time. Despite being the third highest-grossing film of that year, it failed to recover its production costs at the box office. She next starred in Honey Irani's directorial debut, Armaan, alongside Amitabh Bachchan and Anil Kapoor. This drama is set in a hospital and follows the travails of its personnel and its principal, Dr. Akash, who struggles arduously to sustain the institution financially. Zinta played Akash's schizophrenic wife Sonia Kapoor. The film received predominantly positive reviews, and Zinta's role was particularly praised. The Tribune concluded, "Zinta has outclassed everyone with her convincing performance." For her performance, she received nominations for Best Villain at different award ceremonies, including Filmfare.

Rakesh Roshan's science-fiction film Koi... Mil Gaya, about a developmentally disabled young man, followed. Co-starring with Rekha and Hrithik Roshan, Zinta played the role of Nisha, a young woman whom Roshan befriends. She received another Best Actress nomination at the Filmfare for the role. The movie was a financial and critical success and became the most popular film of the year, as well as Zinta's highest-grossing movie, with a domestic total of Rs 489 million; it won the Filmfare Best Movie Award, among others.

Later that year, Yash Chopra cast her opposite Shahrukh Khan as the female lead in the love saga Veer-Zaara, the top-grossing Bollywood film of that year in both India and abroad, earning over Rs 750 million worldwide. The film, which relates the love story of an Indian officer, Veer Pratap Singh, and a Pakistani woman, Zaara Haayat Khan, had a strong international release, including a screening at the Berlin Film Festival, and won several Best Movie awards in major Indian award ceremonies. For her portrayal of Zaara, a smart Pakistani girl, Zinta received her fourth Filmfare Best Actress nomination and won the Stardust Star of the Year Award for the second consecutive year. Variety hailed her as "the most interesting young actress of her generation," writing that she "is her usual lively self as the willful Zaara." Veer-Zaara was Zinta's second highest-grossing film and third major success in two consecutive years. It marked the beginning of her work with Yash Raj Films, one of the largest production houses in Bollywood.

She then starred in Shirish Kunder's romantic musical Jaan-E-Mann, a story set in the United States about two men, played by Salman Khan and Akshay Kumar, who love the same woman. The film received positive reviews from critics, yet performed poorly at the box office. Zinta played the role of Piya, the cynosure of two men. She was mostly criticised for taking a small role, though her performance was generally well-received. Raja Sen described her role as "ornament throughout," but further stated that she "comes vividly alive in the film's last scene, a moment that makes you lament why filmmakers today don't let the babyfaced actress have more fun instead of forcing her to sob copiously. She doesn't have much to do in Jaan-E-Mann, but looks appropriately attractive." Zinta said that the film was a great relief after the more emotionally intense Kabhi Alvida Naa Kehna, as Jaan-E-Mann was "easy, happy and much more simple".

In 2007 Zinta portrayed a British Pakistani woman, Alvira Khan, in her third project with Yash Raj Films, Shaad Ali's comedy Jhoom Barabar Jhoom, alongside Abhishek Bachchan, Bobby Deol and Lara Dutta. The film was a critical and commercial failure in India. She was criticised for her performance; The Times of India wrote that "she is too plastic as the Paki-Brit girl".

Zinta next starred in Samir Karnik's Heroes (2008), a road movie about two final-year film students who, as a part of their assignment, travel a thousand miles across North India to deliver three un-posted letters written by army personnel who lost their lives during the 1999 Kargil war to their families. The story unfolds the journey of these students in three chapters and follows how they meet and are inspired by the families of the soldiers. Zinta is featured in the first chapter as Salman Khan's war widow, Kuljeet Kaur, a woman who becomes the sole breadwinner of the family and single-handedly raises her son. In preparation for the role, Zinta attended Anupam Kher's acting school to learn the dialect and mannerisms of a Punjabi woman.

In 2004, Zinta joined a group of South Asian commentators for BBC News Online. She expressed joy at participating in the project, saying, "I am pretty outspoken and have my own view on every subject. So it will be a good platform for me to air my views." Her first column, "The changing face of Bollywood", published in January 2004, discussed the evolution of Bollywood in the past decade. The column became one of the site's ten most read stories of the day. In her second column, "Odds stacked against Indian women", Zinta analysed the eve teasing phenomenon in India, and criticised those who practice it. She wrote, "Incidences like these take away a woman's dignity, her space and her freedom ... why the state is so helpless in protecting the women. Why should women feel unsafe in a country which had an internationally revered woman prime minister?" The column caught the attention of readers worldwide, and she received thousands of e-mails about it. It was applauded particularly by women for its stand against abuse of Indian women. Her third column, "The darkness that all actors fear", was a more personal column and dealt with her stardom, fans, insecurity and fears as an actor. Her fourth and final column, titled "Facing death in Sri Lanka and Thailand", described her two near-death experiences in late 2004.

Zinta has taken part in several stage shows and world tours since 2001. Her first world tour, a series of concerts called Craze 2001, was performed across the U.S. alongside Anil Kapoor, Aamir Khan, Aishwarya Rai and Gracy Singh. The show faced early cancellation due to the September 11, 2001 attacks, and the team prepared to return to India as soon as possible. However, the shows continued successfully in Canada. In 2002, she participated in the show From India With Love in the UK, along with Amitabh Bachchan, Aamir Khan, Shahrukh Khan and Aishwarya Rai. The show took place at two outdoor venues, Manchester's Old Trafford Football Stadium and London's Hyde Park, with over 100,000 spectators. Zinta's largest world tour was in 2004, when she joined a group of stars (Shahrukh Khan, Rani Mukerji, Saif Ali Khan, Arjun Rampal and Priyanka Chopra) in the Temptation 2004 tour. Showcased in over 22 countries across the world, it became Bollywood's most prominent international concert. In 2006, Zinta was part of the Heat 2006 world tour, along with Akshay Kumar, Saif Ali Khan, Sushmita Sen and Celina Jaitley.

During her years in the film industry, Zinta has been involved with different charities, and has supported women's causes in India, for instance protesting against female infanticide. She has also participated in AIDS awareness drives and campaigns to clean up Mumbai.

In 2007, Zinta along with Rani Mukerji, donated Rs 250,000 of her winnings from Kaun Banega Crorepati to the Shimla District Red Cross Society in Himachal Pradesh. In January, Zinta visited Hisar, Haryana, where she spent a day at the army training base to boost the morale of the jawan troops. The visit was conducted for an NDTV show, Jai Jawan, on which entertainers and actors visit Indian troops. While there, she also met children with disabilities at a special school maintained by the army. In August, along with Mumbai-based artist Gurcharan Singh, Zinta painted for the cause of street children for the non-governmental organisation Khushi. In December, she joined the efforts of the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) to curb human trafficking in India. She spoke on behalf of awareness against the practice, the need for protection and rehabilitation for those rescued from it, and punishment for perpetrators.

Zinta used to visit her native town Shimla when not busy in shooting. In 2006, she moved into her own home in Mumbai. She does not identify with any particular religion. In an interview with The Times of India, she comments, "I believe in good deeds, in karma, I don't believe in going to temples. For me, religion is very personal. It's all about having faith ... We have heard and read that all religions are equal. Now I am increasingly believing in this." She narrowly escaped death twice in late 2004: first after an explosion at a Temptation concert in Colombo, Sri Lanka; and second during the Indian Ocean earthquake.

Zinta has been the subject of several controversies. In 2003, as a witness in the Bharat Shah case, she testified against the Indian mafia. Bharat Shah, the financer of one of her movies, Chori Chori Chupke Chupke, was arrested in 2000 for having connections with Chhota Shakeel, a Mumbai underworld boss. Unlike several of her colleagues, Zinta repeated in court her earlier statement that she had received extortion threats from the mafia during the shooting of the film. After her testimony, she was given witness protection and was forced to stay out of the public eye for two months. Thirteen other witnesses before her, including celebrities Salman Khan and Shahrukh Khan, were witnesses in the case but later retracted their earlier statements. Zinta was the only witness who did not become hostile to the prosecution; the nation responded positively to her actions. Consequently, she was the first recipient of Godfrey's Mind of Steel Award at the annual Red and White Bravery Awards, given to her for the "Courageous Act" of standing against the Mumbai Underworld. On receiving the award, she said: "To be brave is not to be fearless. It is when you fear and you get over it, then you can be called brave. I am human. It is not that I fear nothing. But getting over a fear is a continuous process and I have been successful so far." Since 2006, Zinta has been the brand ambassador for the Godfrey Phillips Bravery awards.

Tabloids have often linked Zinta romantically with other Bollywood stars, but she has strongly denied these rumours. In 2000, Zinta began dating model Marc Robinson. They separated one year later, and according to Zinta remained on good terms. Asked in Filmfare about their break-up, she spoke of "very, very fond memories of the times we were together and I'd like to keep it to that". Zinta has dated the Bombay Dyeing heir, businessman Ness Wadia since February 2005. Their relationship is discussed frequently by reporters, who often speculate about their engagement. In December 2006, another controversy featured Zinta when Ness Wadia was reported to have attacked construction workers at her residence in Bandra. Reportedly, a woman was critically injured and a child was hurt in the incident. Zinta reacted angrily at hearing these rumours reported in the national news and confronted journalists, criticising their conduct. She challenged the press to deliver proof, and offered Rs 1 crore (Rs 10 million) if an injured woman was found. No evidence was found and the rumour has subsequently been regarded as false.

In March 2007, Zinta was involved in a scandal when actress and singer Suchitra Krishnamurthy cited her as the cause of her divorce from Shekhar Kapur, alleging that Zinta was having an affair with him. Although initially silent on the issue, after another accusation by Krishnamurthy, Zinta retorted, "It is unfortunate that I am bearing the brunt of someone else's paranoia. She's clearly unstable and I wish her a speedy recovery." She issued a statement that she had met Kapur only five times in ten years and publicly demanded that he step forward and clear her of the accusation. Thereafter, the controversy came to an end.

Zinta is particularly known in the Indian media for her straightforwardness and for honestly expressing her outspoken views and forthright opinions in public, be it about her on-screen or off-screen life or raising a voice against any social injustice. These features were noted during the Bharat Shah Case, when she testified against the underworld; following this incident she was described by journalists as "The only man in Bollywood". Her characteristic dimple has been cited by the media as her trademark. She is often described by the press as having a vivacious personality and a bubbly, outgoing persona, an image she has confessed to disliking.

In 2003, Zinta appeared in the number one spot on Rediff's "Top Bollywood Female Stars". She was ranked second for the following three years. She has been featured frequently on other Rediff lists, including "Bollywood's Most Beautiful Actresses", "Bollywood's Best Dressed Women" and "Woman of Many Faces". In September 2006, the UK magazine Eastern Eye ranked her at 41 in the list of "Asia's Sexiest Women".

On July 15, 2005, Zinta filed a defamation suit against leading Mumbai tabloid Mid-Day after tapes emerged alleging that Salman Khan had made derogatory comments about her. The tabloid published transcripts indicating that she had a sexual relationship with Khan, and she was cross-examined as a chief witness in January 2007. She said about the case, "I felt humiliated as it spoiled my reputation and character in public." She told of disparaging phone calls she received from individuals pretending to be Salman Khan, and that she had been repeatedly questioned in a derogatory fashion by the media. Zinta further stated that the events affected her professionally as well; a planned film with Khan was abandoned. The tape was examined by the Government's Forensic laboratory in Chandigarh which concluded that it was a fake.

Between 2004 and 2007, Zinta made three appearances on the Indian talk show Koffee with Karan, hosted by Karan Johar, appearing with Saif Ali Khan, Abhishek Bachchan and Bobby Deol, respectively. In 2006, she was a guest judge in the singing talent contest Indian Idol 2. She returned briefly to her occupation as a model when she walked the ramp for Manish Malhotra's display Fashion Week 2006, along with actress Kajol. Later that year, Zinta and filmmaker Karan Johar represented Bollywood at the 2006 Cannes Film Festival to promote Johar's forthcoming Kabhi Alvida Naa Kehna, which featured Zinta in a leading role.

In May 2007, Zinta returned to Cannes for the 60th Film Festival to attend the premiere of My Blueberry Nights, which opened the gathering. She co-hosted the 52nd Filmfare Awards ceremony alongside Shahrukh Khan, Juhi Chawla and Karan Johar. She was selected as the first brand ambassador for GoAir, a new airline service owned by Jeh Wadia from Wadia Group. Speculation arose in the press that she endorsed the brand as a favour to Jeh, who is Ness Wadia's brother, a suggestion that Zinta quickly denied. May 2008 saw Zinta making her third consecutive appearance at Cannes; she attended the 61st Film Festival as the brand ambassador of Chopard, the maker of luxury watches and jewellery.

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Aishwarya Rai

Aishwarya Rai and Rajinikanth at the Machu Pichu, Peru site during a song picturization for Endhiran

Aishwarya Rai-Bachchan (Birthname: Aishwarya Rai, Tulu: ಐಶ್ವರ್ಯಾ ರೈ) born 1 November 1973 is an Indian actress and former Miss World. Before starting her acting career, she worked as a model and gained fame after winning the Miss World title in 1994.

Rai, who made her movie debut in Mani Ratnam's Tamil film Iruvar (1997), had her first commercial success in the Tamil movie Jeans (1998), which earned her a Filmfare Best Actress Award South. She came to the attention of Bollywood in the movie Hum Dil De Chuke Sanam (1999), directed by Sanjay Leela Bhansali. Her performance in the film won her the Filmfare Best Actress Award. In 2002 she appeared in Bhansali's next project, Devdas (2002), for which she won her second Best Actress Award at the Filmfare. After a low phase in her career during 2003-2005, she appeared in the blockbuster Dhoom 2 (2006), which turned out to be her biggest Bollywood commercial success. She later appeared in films like Guru (2007) and Jodhaa Akbar (2008), which were commercially successful and got her critical acclaim. Rai has thus established herself as one of the leading contemporary actresses in the Indian film industry.

During her career, Rai has acted in over forty movies in Hindi, English, Tamil and Bengali including the international productions Bride & Prejudice (2003), Mistress of Spices (2005), The Last Legion (2007) and The Pink Panther 2 (2009) in English.

Rai was born in Mangalore to Krishnaraj Rai and Vrinda Rai. Her family belongs to the Bunt community of Mangalore. She has one elder brother, Aditya Rai who works in Navy and has also co-produced one of Rai's movies, Dil Ka Rishta (2003). At an early age her parents moved to Mumbai where she attended the Arya Vidya Mandir high school in Santa Cruz. Rai then entered Jai Hind College at Churchgate for one year, and then moved to Ruparel College in Matunga to finish her "HSC" studies. She did well in school and planned to become an architect and went on pursuing studies in architecture. She can communicate in several languages, including her mother tongue Tulu, as well as Hindi, English, Marathi and Tamil. She started studying architecture but gave up her education to pursue a career in modelling.

While pursuing her studies in architecture, Rai began modeling on the side. In the 1994 Miss India contest, she won the second place behind Sushmita Sen, and was crowned Miss India World. She went on to win the Miss World title the same year, where she also won the Miss Photogenic award. She abandoned her studies after winning the pageant and spent one year reigning as Miss World in London. Rai then started working as a professional model and then moved on to her current profession as an actress.

Rai made her acting debut in Mani Ratnam's Tamil film, Iruvar (1997) with Mohanlal, The film was a commercial and critical success and won many awards including Best Film award at the Belgrade International Film Festival, two National Film Awards, and two Filmfare Awards South. Rai made her Bollywood debut in the film, Aur Pyaar Ho Gaya opposite Bobby Deol, which also released that year; the film did not do well at the box office. and was also panned by critics. However, her third project, S. Shankar's Tamil film, Jeans (1998) was a critical and commercial success, earning her the Filmfare Best Actress Award South. The film, which portrayed Rai in a dual role, took Rai two years to complete.

In 1999 Rai starred in Sanjay Leela Bhansali's Hum Dil De Chuke Sanam opposite Salman Khan and Ajay Devgan, the film was centered around a Love triangle and won critical acclaim and was her first Bollywood box office success. She won her first Filmfare Best Actress Award for the film. In the same year she appeared in Subhash Ghai's Taal , in which she played the role of a young village girl Mansi, who becomes a big Pop star after being hurt by her lover played by Akshay Khanna, the film was an average performer in India but was a big success among the international audience, especially in the United States, where it became the first Indian film to reach the top 20 on Variety's box office list. the film gave her another nomination for Best Actress at the Filmfare; her performances in the films was applauded by critics and earned her critical acclaim .

In 2000, she appeared in Mansoor Khan's Josh alongside Shahrukh Khan and Chandrachur Singh, in which she played a Catholic girl named Shirley who falls in love with the sibling of her Brother's enemy. The film was a commercial success. Later that year she appeared in Satish Kaushik's Hamara Dil Aapke Paas Hai opposite Anil Kapoor. It was a moderate success and her performance earned her a Filmfare Best Actress Award nomination. Later that year she played a supporting role in the Aditya Chopra's Mohabbatein alongside Amitabh Bachchan and Shahrukh Khan, the film was a major commercial success and became the second highest grosser of the year, it also earned her a Filmfare Best Supporting Actress Award nomination. Later that year, she also starred in the Tamil film Kandukondain Kandukondain, alongside Mammooty, Ajith Kumar and Tabu.

In 2002, Rai appeared alongside Shahrukh Khan and Madhuri Dixit in Sanjay Leela Bhansali's Devdas, an adaptation of Sharat Chandra Chattopadhyay famous novel by the same name. She played the role of Paro (Parvati), the love interest of the protaganist played by Khan. The film received a special screening at the Cannes Film Festival. and became the highest grossing film of the year both in India and overseas. Devdas won numerous awards including 10 Filmfare Awards, and Rai received her second Filmfare Best Actress Award for her performance. In 2003, she acted in Rituparno Ghosh's Bengali film, Chokher Bali, an adaptation of one of Rabindranath Tagore's novels by the same name. She portrayed the character of a young woman called Binodini, who is left to her own devices when her sickly husband dies soon after they are married. That year she also appeared in her home production Dil Ka Rishta alongside Arjun Rampal and Rohan Sippy's Kuch Na Kaho alongside Abhishek Bachchan, none of which succeeded.

In 2004 she appeared in Gurinder Chadha's Bollywood-style English adaptation of Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen, Bride and Prejudice alongside Martin Henderson. In the film she potrayed the role of Lalita Bakshi, the film's counterpart of Elizabeth Bennet in Austen's novel. This was followed by Rajkumar Santoshi's Khakee alongside Amitabh Bachchan, Akshay Kumar, Ajay Devgan and Jayapradha, in the film she played a negative role for the first time in her career. In the same year she appeared in in her second film with Rituparno Ghosh, Raincoat alongside Ajay Devgan. The film was highly acclaimed by the critics, whereas Rai received rave reviews for her performance.

In 2005 she appeared in Shabd a film based on a love triangle alongside Sanjay Dutt and Zayed Khan. The film was a box office flop wheraeas it received average reviews from the critics. Her next release that year was Paul Mayeda Berges's The Mistress of Spicesbased upon the novel The Mistress of Spices by Chitra Banerjee Divakaruni in which she starred alongside Dylan McDermott. The film received negative review by critics and was also a commercial failure. The same year she made a special appearance in Shaad Ali's Bunty Aur Babli in a hugely popular seven-minute dance sequence for the song "Kajra Re", alongside Amitabh Bachchan and Abhishek Bachchan.

In the year 2006, Rai starred in J P Dutta's Umrao Jaan an adaptation of the Urdu novel Umrao Jaan Ada (1905), written by Mirza Hadi Ruswa. She potrayed the role of a real life courtesan and poetess by the same name from 19th century. The film was a critical and commercial failure, though Rai's work was generally well received. Critic Taran Adarsh wrote, "Aishwarya Rai looks ethereal. She has looked heavenly and performed so convincingly. She emotes through her expressive eyes and the consistency in her performance is evident from start to end". Later that year she appeared as a master thief, Sunheri, in Yash Raj Films's Dhoom 2 directed by Sanjay Gadhvi, with an ensemble cast of Hrithik Roshan, Abhishek Bachchan, Bipasha Basu and Uday Chopra. The film turned out to be a blockbuster and became the highest grossing film of the year in India. The film also sparked a controversy for a scene containing a kiss between her and Hrithik Roshan. Her performance earned her a sixth nomination for Filmfare Best Actress Award.

In 2007 she appeared in Mani Ratnam's Guru as Sujata, speculated to be based on the life of Indian businessman Dhirubhai Ambani, it was a rag to riches story about an ambitious small town man who ends up as the owner of the biggest corporation in India. The film was premièred at the Elgin Theatre in Toronto, Ontario, Canada, making it the first Indian film to have a mainstream international premiere in Canada. The film was critically acclaimed and performed well at the box office, becoming one of the highest grossers of the year. Rai won the critical acclaim, with one critic writing, "Aishwarya Rai stuns you with a powerful performance. Known for her angelic looks all the while, the actor will make people sit up and notice the reservoirs of talent in Guru". Rai got her seventh nomination for the Filmfare Best Actress Award for the film. In the same year she starred in Jag Mundhra's British film Provoked as Kiranjit Ahluwalia(an NRI woman who killed her abusive husband after facing severe domestic violence) alongside Naveen Andrews. The film was panned by critics and was also a commercial failure, though rai received positive reviews from critics. In the same year she appeared as a female Indian warrior from Kerala named Mira, in Doug Lefler's epic film The Last Legion alongside Sir Ben Kingsley, Colin Firth and Thomas Sangster. The film was a critical failure.

In 2008, she starred alongside Hrithik Roshan in Ashutosh Gowariker's historical drama Jodhaa Akbar which was a critical and commercial success playing the role of Jodha Bai, the wife of the Mughal emperor Jalaluddin Muhammad Akbar, played by Roshan; and also co-starred with husband Abhishek Bachchan and her father-in-law Amitabh Bachchan in Sarkar Raj, playing the CEO of a major power company proposing to establish a new power plant in rural Maharashtra.

Rai returned to the Tamil film industry and is working with Rajinikanth for the movie Endhiran, directed by S. Shankar, in an interview to the news channel Aaj Tak she confirmed a fee of Rs 6 crores for the film, making her the highest paid actress in India. She is also slated to co-star with Vikram in Mani Ratnam's next film, Ashokavanam which is also to be simultaneously made in Hindi, titled Raavan, with Abhishek Bachchan in the lead. She set to appear in Sanjay Leela Bhansali's next film opposite Hrithik Roshan, Vipul Shah's next film opposite Akshay Kumar, Abhinay Deo's next film produced by Farhan Akhtar and Vishal Bharadwaj's next directorial venture.

In 2009 Rai was awarded the Padma Shri for her contributions to Indian cinema. In the same year she refused to accept the second-highest Order Of France, Ordre des Arts et des Lettres as her father was suffering from serious illness, and she wanted her whole family to attend the award function. She is only the fourth Indian actor after Amitabh Bachchan, Nandita Das and Shahrukh Khan to be chosen for an Order Of France .

In 1999 Rai participated in a world tour called the Magnificent Five along with Aamir Khan, Rani Mukherji, Akshaye Khanna and Twinkle Khanna.

In 2003 she became the first Indian actress to be a jury member at the Cannes Film Festival.

In 2004 she travelled all the way to Siachen Glacier, which at a height of 13000 ft is the highest battlefield in the world, to boost the morale of the jawans for a special New Year episode on the NDTV show, Jai Jawan. In 2005, she became a brand ambassador for Pulse Polio, a campaign established by the Government of India in 1994 to eradicate Polio in India.

In February 2005, Rai performed at the HELP! Telethon Concert to help raise money for the victims of 2004 tsunami earthquake in company with other Bollywood stars.

In 2006 she appeared at the closing ceremony of the 2006 Commonwealth Games in Melbourne, as part of a performance showcasing Indian art, on behalf of the 2010 Commonwealth Games, to be held in New Delhi.In 2008 she along with her family laid the foundation of a special school for underprivilged girls in the Daulatpur village in Uttar Pradesh.The school will be made by her family and is going to be named after her.

In Summer 2008, Rai joined her husband and father-in-law along with Preity Zinta and Ritesh Deshmukh, Shilpa Shetty on the Unforgettable World Tour. The first leg of the tour covered the USA, Canada, London, and Trinidad. The second leg of the tour will most likely happen by the end of this year 2008. Amitabh's company AB Corp Ltd. along with Wizcraft International Entertainment Pvt. Ltd are behind the concert.

Aishwarya has previously dated Bollywood actors Salman Khan and Vivek Oberoi. She is married to Indian actor Abhishek Bachchan who is three years her junior. After much speculation concerning their relationship, her engagement to Abhishek Bachchan was announced on January 14, 2007. The announcement was later confirmed by Amitabh Bachchan. Rai married Bachchan on April 20, 2007 according to traditional Hindu rites of the South Indian Bunt community, to which she belongs. Token North Indian and Bengali ceremonies were also performed. The wedding took place in a private ceremony at the Bachchan residence Prateeksha in Juhu, Mumbai. Though the wedding was a private affair intended for the Bachchan and Rai family and friends, the involvement of the media turned it into it a national extravaganza.

Rai has been the most popular face of Indian cinema globally. In 2004 she was chosen by Time magazine as one of the World's "100 Most Influential People", and appeared on the cover of Time magazine, Asia Edition in 2003. She was the subject of a 60 Minutes profile on 2 January 2005, which said that "at least according to thousands of Web sites, Internet polls and even Julia Roberts", she was "The World's Most Beautiful Woman". In October 2004 a wax figure of Rai was put on display in London's Madame Tussaud's wax museum. She was the 6th Indian and the second Bollywood personality after her father-in-law Amitabh Bachchan to get this honour.

In 2005 she became a global brand ambassador of L'Oreal alongside Andie Macdowell, Eva Longoria and Penelope Cruz. The same year, a special Tulip in Netherland was named "Aishwarya Rai" after her. Rai became the first Indian to appear on such shows as Late Show with David Letterman, and was the first Bollywood personality to appear on Oprah's "Women Across the Globe" segment. In 2005, Harpers and Queen's list of 10 Most beautiful women in the world ranked her at the 9th spot.

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The Last Lear

Preity Zinta (left) and Amitabh Bachchan in the film.

The Last Lear is an Indian, English language film directed by Rituparno Ghosh. The film stars Amitabh Bachchan, Preity Zinta, Arjun Rampal, Divya Dutta, Shefali Shah and Jisshu Sengupta. It was produced by Planman Motion Pictures.

Basing the script on Utpal Dutt's play Aajker Shahjahan, Rituparno Ghosh penned it in 2006, and turned to the actors in February 2007, all of whom accepted the offer. The film began shooting from February 28, 2007 to April 10, 2007; principal shooting took place in Kolkata and some shooting took place in Mussoorie, Uttaranchal. Dubbing for the film ended on August 31, 2007.

The Last Lear premiered at the 2007 Toronto International Film Festival on September 9, and received a significant reception, earning many accolades after being showcased at a Gala Presentation.

The film was later showcased at the London Film Festival, and the International Film Festival of India in Goa. The film was received positively by critics with many saying that Bachchan has given a career best performance.

Veteran thespian Harish Mishra (Amitabh Bachchan) is gravely ill. The punishments of a film shoot have left the old man in a coma. His co-star, Shabnam (Preity Zinta), is wracked with worry, but their director, Siddharth (Arjun Rampal), keeps strangely distant and refuses to visit his ailing star. In flashbacks, their story emerges.

Siddharth first had to woo Harish from the comforts of his retirement, and the interaction between the two yields some of the film’s most delightful scenes. The impatient young auteur attempts to win the trust and collaboration of the aged performer, who sits raging against the modern world from the sanctuary of his study. Sporting a silver mane, Bachchan is irresistible here – vain, forceful and impetuous. He trumpets the superiority of Shakespeare over anything cinema can create. And yet, the movies hold out a new challenge.

Once he agrees to act in the film, The Last Lear becomes a captivating reflection on the comparative artifices of stagecraft and cinema. As the outsider in the cast, Harish is hilarious in dismissing movie fakery. His theatre skills are grander. Standing on a hillside, he teaches Shabnam how to project her voice clear across a valley to the next hill.

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Dil Hai Tumhaara

Preity Zinta and Jimmy Sherrgil (l-r) as Shalu and Samir

Dil Hai Tumhaara (Hindi: दिल है तुम्हारा, Urdu: دل ہے تمہارا, English: My Heart Is Yours) is a 2002 Bollywood romantic comedy and family film starring Rekha, Preity Zinta, Mahima Chaudhry, Arjun Rampal, Jimmy Shergill and Alok Nath. The film performed poorly at the Indian box office, however Zinta's performance was praised by critics and earned her nominations at a number of award ceremonies. The music of the film, composed by Nadeem-Shravan, went on to do well on the charts.

The film revolves around the character of Shalu (Preity Zinta) and her relationships with her mother, Saritaji (Rekha), and sister, Nimmi (Mahima Chaudhary). Unknown to the two girls, Shalu and Nimmi are only half-sisters, as Shalu is the daughter of Saritaji's late husband with the woman he had been having an affair with. Wounded in a car accident with the other woman, he begged Saritaji on his death bed to accept Shalu. Although Saritaji adopted Shalu, she has given her none of the love that she has shown to her real daughter, Nimmi; Shalu's hidden parentage is the main factor that causes Saritaji to openly pay more affection to her own daughter while ignoring Shalu.

Shalu, on the other hand, loves Saritaji, whom she believes is her own mother. She constantly craves her mother's affection but does not get it, so she retaliates by being rebellious, as that is the only way to get her mother's attention. Unlike their mother, Nimmi loves her sister very much, and constantly stands up for Shalu, though she refuses to think ill will of Saritaji.

Eventually a young man named Dev Khanna (Arjun Rampal) enters both their lives. Dev and Shalu initially do not get along but soon fall in love. However, circumstances make Nimmi believe that Dev is in love with her, not Shalu. Her mother, only aware of Nimmi's side of the story, offers a marriage proposal to Dev's father (Alok Nath) on Nimmi's behalf. When Saritaji sees Dev and Shalu being affectionate, she jumps to the conclusion that Shalu has stolen Dev from Nimmi, just as Shalu's mother stole Saritaji's husband from her. Saritaji confronts Shalu in anger and reveals her true heritage in front of Nimmi.

Shalu, who has long craved her mother's love, decides to sacrifice Dev in order to make her beloved mother and sister happy. When Dev learns of this situation from Shalu, he is confused and dismayed, but agrees to marry Nimmi in order to make Shalu happy. When Nimmi notices that something is wrong with Shalu, Shalu deflects the question by saying that she has fallen in love with Samir (Jimmy Shergill), her childhood best friend who has been in love with her for years.

On the engagement day, Saritaji's political rivals try to use Shalu's secret illegitimate heritage to threaten Nimmi's marriage to Dev, who is in a prominent family. Shalu takes matters into her own hands, and she rushes to Dev's house where she publicly announces to Dev's entire family that she is illegitimate, arguing that it is proof of Saritaji's kindness and generosity that Shalu was adopted into her family, and it would be an injustice if the marriage were cancelled solely because of her. Dev's father is impressed with Shalu's courage, and promises that nothing will stop this marriage from taking place.

Saritaji secretly witnesses Shalu's confession and is deeply touched. She is ashamed of how she has treated Shalu in the past, and they share their first hug together. Saritaji tells her that she will ask Nimmi to step aside if Shalu and Dev are really in love, but Shalu stops her from doing so, saying that now she has her mother's love and acceptance, she does not want anything else.

Nimmi is very happy that her mother has accepted Shalu but she still feels that something is not quite right with her sister. She soon learns from Samir of the whole ruse, and gladly steps aside in order for Shalu and Dev to be together.

Rekha as Saritaji - a woman who is heartbroken when she discovers that her husband has been having an affair. When her husband is wounded in a car accident, he begs Saritaji on his death bed to accept Shalu, his daughter from the other woman. Sarataji adopts Shalu, but gives her none of the love that she shows to her real daughter, Nimmi. Sarataji, with her two daughters, moves to another town where no one knows of their history, and there she fulfils her political aspirations and becomes mayor. Sarataji is constantly under attack from her political rivals who her seek to undermine her authority and remove her from office.

Preity Zinta as Shalu - the playful and adventurous daughter of Sarataji's husband and the woman that he had been having an affair with. She is adopted by Sarataji, whom she believes is her own mother. She constantly craves her mother's affection but does not get it, so she retaliates by being rebellious, which is the only way to get her mother's attention. She loves her mother and sister Nimmi very much. She eventually falls in love with Dev Khanna, unaware that Nimmi has fallen for him as well.

Mahima Chaudhry as Nimmi - the kind and responsible biological daughter of Sarataji and her husband. She does not know that Shalu, whom she loves very much, is only her half-sister. Nimmi constantly stands up for Shalu, though she refuses to think ill will of her own mother. Nimmi falls in love with Dev Khanna, not realising that Dev and Shalu have fallen in love. Later when it is revealed that Shalu is not Sarataji's daughter, Nimmi still openly considers Shalu her sister.

Arjun Rampal as Dev Khanna - an American business school graduate who decides to investigate his father's factory in Palampur. There he crosses paths with Shalu, who works at the factory. Dev wants to shut down the factory but Shalu convinces him otherwise, and together they work out a plan to save the factory's business. The pair fall in love during this time. When Nimmi is injured, Dev visits her in the hospital and helps cheer her up, unaware that his actions cause Nimmi to fall in love with him.

Alok Nath as Mr. Khanna - a wealthy but generous businessman who owns the factory in Palampur that is the livelihood of most of the people of the town. He is the father of Dev Khanna, and approves of Shalu's positive influence on his son. When Sarataji visits him with a marriage proposal, he assumes that it is on behalf of Shalu, and is shocked when he learns that it is for Nimmi.

The film is notable for having unusually long takes during the musical scenes, most notably during the Mohabbat Dil Ka Sakoon and Dil Hai Tumhaara sequences. A number of the musical sequences were also used to advance the plot forward, instead of simply being enjoyable interludes.

This is the second film where Preity Zinta and Kundan Shah worked together, the first being Kya Kehna.

Even though the film did not do well at the box office, the music of the film went on to be successful. The film has nine songs composed by the duo Nadeem-Shravan, with lyrics authored by Sameer.

Preity Zinta received a nomination for Best Actress at the Star Screen Awards.

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Filmfare Best Female Debut Award

The Filmfare Best Female Debut Award is given by Filmfare magazine as part of its annual Filmfare Awards for Hindi films. Technically, this category comes under the Filmfare Sensational Debut Award as it represents the male and female category. The award for best female debut first started in 1988 and was titled Filmfare Lux New Face Award (except for a special award, Best Female Debut, given to Tabu in 1995). The Filmfare Lux New Face Award was last given to Preity Zinta in 1999, and in 2001, it was renamed Filmfare Best Female Debut Award. The renamed award was first given to Kareena Kapoor and that has been its title ever since.

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Heaven on Earth (film)

Heaven On Earth.jpg

Heaven on Earth is a 2008 Canadian film directed and written by Deepa Mehta. Preity Zinta plays the leading role of Chand, a young Indian Punjabi woman who finds herself in an abusive arranged marriage with an Indo-Canadian man, played by theatre actor Vansh Bhardwaj. The Film is to release in India in hindi under the title Videsh.

Deepa Mehta penned the screenplay in 2007. She met Preity Zinta at the 2007 International Indian Film Academy Awards and offered her the role of a Punjabi houswife. Initially, Zinta could not commit to the project because of dates problems but they have been worked out and Zinta signed the film. Seema Biswas, who was part of Mehta's previous project Water was also chosen to be part of the cast, but she eventually did not act. Mehta, who saw The Last Lear (2007) starring Zinta in the lead female role, said "I think Preity is perfect!". Yet she organized an acting workshop for Zinta in Toronto, which Zinta attended in September "to understand and come to grips with the character's milieu and body language. I think Preity can look very, very Punjabi." said Mehta.

Principal photography for Heaven on Earth commenced in November 2007 and concluded at the end of December 2007. The film was primarily shot in Toronto and Brampton, Canada, with additional location shooting in Punjab, India, where it was completed.

Vibrant and irrepressibly alive, Chand (Preity Zinta) is a young bride leaving her home in Ludhiana, India, for the cavernous landscape of Brampton, Ontario, where her husband Rocky (Vansh Bhardwaj) and his very traditional family await her arrival. Everything is new to Chand, everything is unfamiliar including the quiet and shy Rocky who she meets for the first time at the Arrivals level of Pearson Airport. Chand approaches her new life and her new land with equanimity and grace, and at times the wide-eyed optimism of hope—her first snowfall is a tiny miracle of beauty, and the roar of Niagara Falls creates the excitement of new beginnings.

But soon optimism turns to isolation as the family she has inherited struggles beneath the weight of unspoken words, their collective frustration becoming palpable. No one feels the pressure more than Rocky, weighed down by familial obligations. A controlling mother who can’t let him go, a sweet but ineffectual father, and a sister whose two children and unemployed husband are also a burden. All live with Rocky and Chand in a two-bedroom house in the suburbs of Toronto. To make matters worse, Rocky is expected to find the money to bring his extended family to Canada. Unable to express his anger, he finds other ways to release it and it’s Chand who bears the brunt of his repressed rage.

Trapped in a world she cannot comprehend and unable to please her husband, Chand is desperate. Hope comes in the form of Rosa (Yanna McIntosh), a tough and savvy Jamaican woman who works alongside Chand in a factory where immigrant women from all over the world clean and press dirty hotel laundry. Rosa sees past the make-up that covers Chand’s bruised face. Realizing Chand has nowhere to turn, Rosa gives her a magical root advising her “to put it in whatever the bastard drinks.” The root is supposed to seduce the one who takes it, making them fall hopelessly in love with the person who gives it to them. Chand’s attempts with the magic root lead to surreal incidents and her life gradually begins to mirror an Indian fable involving a King Cobra. As the lines between fantasy and reality converge, Chand and Rocky come face to face with each other and themselves.

The film has screened at the Toronto International Film Festival, the Edmonton International Film Festival, and the Kingston Canadian Film Festival. It was released in select Canadian theatres on October 24, 2008.

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Dil Chahta Hai

Dil Chahta Hai cover

Dil Chahta Hai (Hindī: दिल चाहता है, Urdū: دل چاہتا ہے, English: The Heart Desires, but billed as Do Your Thing) is a 2001 Hindi language film written and directed by then-newcomer Farhan Akhtar, starring Aamir Khan, Saif Ali Khan, Akshaye Khanna, Preity Zinta, Sonali Kulkarni and Dimple Kapadia. It is set in modern-day urban Mumbai and focuses on a major period of transition in the lives of three young friends.

The film was critically acclaimed, winning that year's National Film Award for Best Feature Film in Hindi. It was also a commercial success, though it performed better in the urban areas of the country compared to the rural areas, which was attributed by critics to the city-oriented lifestyle depicted in the movie in which all the characters are, without exception, from rich or at least upper-middle-class families.

The movie is based on writer-director Farhan Akhtar's diaries on his trips to Goa, his 1996 month-and-a-half long stay at New York, and a storyline narrated to him by a friend. It tells the story of three friends graduating from college and transitioning into life as adults. Each individual has a different perspective of life and love in particular.

Akash (Aamir Khan) does not believe in love, so he does not keep girlfriends for more than two weeks. Sameer (Saif Ali Khan) is a genial, well-meaning, desperately romantic but confused guy who is prone to romantic infatuations and believes to have found true love whenever he gets attracted to a girl. Siddharth (Akshaye Khanna), or Sid, an artist by profession and the most mature of the three, is not interested in trivial romances and is dedicated to his work.

Akash, who is not only a cad in his personal life (breaking hearts, proposing to a girl named Shalini (Preity Zinta) in jest) but also a mischief-maker in his friends' lives, craftily engineers a breakup between Sameer and his girlfriend. He then plans a vacation trip to the beaches of Goa.

Sameer predictably "falls in love" in Goa with a pretty Swiss girl, a story that ends in disaster. He returns home to find that his parents have arranged a meeting with a potential marriage prospect. He resists at first as he does not want an arranged marriage, but the moment he sees the girl, Pooja (Sonali Kulkarni), he realises that she is 'the one'. Unfortunately, she is already in a relationship with someone else and Sameer has to content himself with only her friendship.

Sid, in the meantime, befriends and eventually falls in love with Tara (Dimple Kapadia), an older divorcee and alcoholic, who had moved into a nearby house and shares his love for art. He decides to keep it from her, suppressing all hopes of a relationship as he knows that she, like most other people in society, would consider this scandalous. When his family and friends start finding out, everything goes wrong. Sid's mother is horrified and wrongly accuses Tara of having led Sid on. Akash makes fun of Sid's true intentions and his offensive remarks create a rift in their friendship. Tara hears that Sid has quarrelled with friends and family because of her and feeling that she has ruined his life, refuses to see him.

Akash, on the other hand, is also experiencing romantic upheaval. His parents send him to Sydney to work for the family business. On the flight, he meets Shalini again. He apologises for his earlier prank and asks her to show him around the new city. Even though Shalini is engaged to marry someone else, she finds herself agreeing and they both, eventually, start to feel a certain "something". She tries to find out how he feels, but he holds back. She then leaves for India to marry Rohit, her fiancé. Akash lets her go, then realizes that he can't live without her and returns to India to win her back. He proposes to her a day before her wedding and she accepts with the blessing of Rohit's parents.

Meanwhile, Sameer and Pooja start going out after she breaks up with her boyfriend, and Sameer plans on proposing marriage soon.

Sid's story is more tragic. Tara is hospitalized with cirrhosis and dies with Sid at her bedside. Sid and Akash reconcile (with a little help from Sameer) and six months later, the three friends regroup in Goa where Sid meets a new girl. They share a smile and Sid realises that life goes on. The girl Sid likes turns out to be Deepa (Samantha Treymane).

The film received praise from critics for portraying contemporary Indian youth as cosmopolitan and urban. The characters are depicted as upper-class with lavish houses and designer clothes. They attend art exhibitions and performances of Western opera, and travel overseas as a matter of course. Some critics opined that the film did not perform well in the non-urban areas because the lifestyle depicted in the movie was too city-oriented.

The film's style extended to the music and its picturisation in the movie. One song sequence recapitulates, and to some extent, parodies Bollywood song-and-dance history. Other songs drop the usual dance accompaniment — one song depicts an argument between two protagonists through the song's lyrics, another establishes the character's state of mind through a moody photo collage, while yet another imagines the beautiful and idealised world of an artist in love through a song inside a painting. There is also an extended opera sequence, which was exclusively commissioned for the film.

The film was screened at the International Film Festival of India, the Palm Springs International Film Festival and the Austin Film Festival.

The awards won are highlighted in bold.

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Source : Wikipedia