Bollywood is not all about jhatkas and matkas. And, it’s not all about the chase for Rs 100cr+ blockbusters, that keep the cash registers ringing. It may be hard to believe, but there is the concept of entrepreneurship alive in this space. Here are 10 Bollywood glamorous heroines, who have donned the producer’s hat to become entrepreneurs, in their own right.
Bollywood actresses may be known for highly sensitive portrayal of characters, for their item numbers, their size zero bodies, perfect skin, and so on. But, it is encouraging to note that there are some of them, who have gone that extra mile to set up a business role for themselves, in the highly pressure-ridden, competitive industry.
It’s a “beauty plus brains” scenario. Here we take a look at those, who have not only been successful in winning hearts by their wonderful performance but have also been successful producers.
Anushka Sharma: What is significant about her career is that she been teamed with No 1 actors and production houses in her short career span. But, surprise, surprise, this flawless fragile beauty is the latest addition in the list of beauties, who have turned producers. Anushka, who is one of the most sought-after actresses in Bollywood, donned the producer’s hat for her maiden production ‘NH10’. And, small wonder, she has received rave reviews for her film.
Shilpa Shetty: She dons many hats today – glamorous actress, fitness expert, hands-on mom, a business woman and now a producer. Performing all these roles, the actress produced ‘Dishkiyaoon’ (the movie starred Sunny Deol, Ayesha Khanna and Harman Baweja). She participated in Big Brother, the show that gave a boost to her career, when she went on to win the show. She soon launched a perfume, a fitness DVD and also became a partner of the IOSIS chain of spas in Mumbai. Her marriage to business tycoon Raj Kundra seems to have brought out the businesswoman in her. Together they bought stake in the IPL team Rajasthan Royals. She has achieved success in this new avatar, in the business arena.
Dia Mirza: Former Miss Asia Pacific and actress Dia has worked in films like ‘Shootout At Lokhandwala’, ‘Rehna Hai Tere Dil Mein’, ‘Parineeta’ and ‘Honeymoon Travels Pvt Ltd.’ She turned producer with ‘Bobby Jasoos’, which released recently. The movie was a spy-comedy-thriller featuring Vidya Balan.
Lara Dutta: Former Miss Universe, Lara Dutta is known in Bollywood for her strong and bold roles in films, and has given hits like ‘No Entry’ and ‘Partner’. She started her production house Bheegi Basanti with husband and tennis player Mahesh Bhupathi and produced ‘Chalo Dilli’, which was critically acclaimed. Her other business ventures are – a sari collection in collaboration with Chabbra 555, and a fitness DVD.
Preity Zinta: Famous for her dimpled smile, Preity Zinta has a very successful acting career to her credit, after having worked with big production houses. She is recognized for her roles in hits like ‘Soldier’ and ‘Kal Ho Naa Ho’. She turned producer with ‘Ishkq In Paris’. It is important to note that post her success in Bollywood, she dabbled into entrepreneurship with an IPL team – as co-owner of Kings XI Punjab(with Ness Wadia). Interestingly, Zinta was the only woman to own an IPL team until 2009, and she was also the league’s youngest owner!
Juhi Chawla: The heroine, who made headlines for her acting skills, has also garnered praise for comic timings. After her successful acting career, she turned to production after teaming up with King Khan. Partnering a production company Dreamz Unlimited with Shah Rukh Khan and Aziz Mirza in 1999, which produced films like – ‘Phir Bhi Dil Hai Hindustani’, ‘Asoka’ and ‘Chalte Chalte’, which was a smash hit. Her presence is also felt in another high profile business area. She is also co-owner of an IPL team – Kolkata Knight Riders, with SRK.
Pooja Bhatt: Pooja Bhatt started her career with films with Mahesh Bhatt’s Daddy and gave some memorable performances in films like ‘Dil Hai Ki Manta Nahi’ and ‘Sadak’. But soon she moved to production – Fisheye Network, and then has been producing films. Her last film appearance was in ‘Everybody Says I’m Fine!’ in 2001, after which she moved on to focus on producing and directing. She made her directorial debut with ‘Paap’ in 2004, starring John Abraham and Udita Goswami. Since then, she has made four more directorial ventures: ‘Holiday’, ‘Dhokha’, ‘Kajraare’ and ‘Jism 2’. ‘Tamanna’, ‘Dushman’, ‘Zakhm’ were produced under Pooja Bhatt Productions.
Sushmita Sen: A former Miss Universe, this Bengali beauty is an efficient businesswoman along with being a great actor and single mom to two daughters. She owns a jewellery retail store in Dubai, and has a chain of hotels and spas under her company Sensazione. She had also launched a production company called Tantra Entertainment few years ago. She has plans to foray into production with ‘Jhansi Ki Rani’. Sushmita was also heading the Miss Universe franchise ‘I Am She’ which was taken over by Femina in 2014.
Farah Khan: It is with ‘Jo Jeeta Wohi Sikandar’ Bollywood film that she started her film career in the year 1992. After the song ‘Pehla Nasha’ turned into a smash hit, it marked her foray into Bollywood.
This expert choreographer for Bollywood films has given many choreographed songs that have been big hits. She entered other niche areas like story writing and direction. Stories of the two films ‘Om Shanti Om’ in 2007 and ‘Main Hoon Na’ in 2004 were penned and directed by her. In 2010 she scripted and directed another film by name ‘Tees Maar Khan’. Besides being an actress and director, she turned producer when she started the production house – Three’s Company, with her husband, which produced ‘Tees Maar Khan’. Giving her reasons on turning producer, she stated that when one directs a movie it does not belong to the director who can only benefit from the accolades that the film gets, but all the material benefits goes to the producer! She has also worked on international projects like – ‘Monsoon Wedding’, ‘Marigold’, ‘An Adventure in India’, and a Chinese film ‘Perhaps love’.
Priyanka Chopra: We have all seen Priyanka Chopra’s stunning entry into Hollywood and her recent show-stopper appearance –at the Met Gala event!
Despite juggling film careers in Bollywood and Hollywood, Priyanka Chopra is also taking time out to pursue her production dreams. Nothing has deterred Priyanka Chopra from seeking new challenges. Building her legacy since her 2000 Miss World win, she is now shooting the second season of popular US TV series Quantico and will soon be seen in the Baywatch movie.
Her production house Purple Pebble Pictures (PPP) is foraying into regional cinema, and the banner already has three films – one each in Bhojpuri, Marathi and Punjabi – which will release this year, namely – ‘Bam Bam Bol Raha Hai Kashi’ (Bhojpuri), ‘Ventilator’ (Marathi) and Ek Onkar’ (Punjabi).
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