Over the last decade, at least four of Bollywood’s top five heroines and former models — Anushka Sharma, Deepika Padukone, Katrina Kaif and Priyanka Chopra — as well as Arjun Rampal and John Abraham – have made their way into the A – list. Here’s looking at how the modelling brigade gets it right
“Models can’t really act! They look great, but the moment they open their mouth, you want to run away.” At an event held recently, actress Deepika Padukone mentioned that a popular director had made this statement way back in 2008, around the same time when a number of models entered the industry to explore acting as a career option.
The switch, though not a new phenomenon, what with the model roster including names of the likes of Zeenat Aman, Juhi Chawla, Jackie Shroff, Aishwarya Rai Bachchan and even Salman Khan as those who made a stylish entry into tinsel town with their respective launch vehicles, after being a part of beauty pageants and ad campaigns. A host of television commercials, print advertisement and runway models in the past have left behind a career in the modelling industry, as they picked Bollywood as their final destination. But although the success rate of models turning actors is decent, a considerable number tried their luck and sank without a trace, clearly indicating that things are not all hunky dory when it comes to surviving as an actor. Gone are the days when winning a beauty pageant was the only pre -requisite for models to enter films. Today, models are not leaving any stone unturned to prove their mettle.
The ramp-to-riches journey of actors in the last decade like Priyanka Chopra, Deepika Padukone, Katrina Kaif and male actors like John Abraham, who started their modelling career as teenagers and went on to become power performers by mid-20s, has inspired many models who are keen on taking the plunge. “In my mind, I always knew where my priorities were. I wanted to get into modelling, but I knew that cinema was my final destination,” stated Padukone. While not all of them started off by acing their acting skills, they worked hard on getting things right and turned limitations into their biggest assets. Be it Kaif’s dancing skills or Padukone’s dialogue delivery (her voice was dubbed in Om Shanti Om), most model turned actresses knew that one cannot sustain in the long run, only by depending on their looks, and focussed on other aspects to achieve their goals. Casting director Mukesh Chhabra mentioned that he is in awe of the way Padukone and Chopra’s careers have shaped up. “I think Deepika and Priyanka have turned out to be the biggest surprises, the ramp could offer to the screen. They do not fail to do justice to the characters that continued…