Sonakshi Sinha (pronounced [soːnaːkʂiː sɪnɦaː]; born 2 June 1987) is an Indian actress who works in Hindi cinema. She made her debut in the Hindi film industry with 2010′s Dabangg opposite Salman Khan, which went onto become the highest grossing Bollywood film of the year. Sinha received positive reviews for her performance, as well as the Filmfare Award for Best Female Debut. Post her debut, she went on to play the leading lady in some of Bollywood‘s biggest hits, including Rowdy Rathore (2012), Son of Sardaar(2012), Dabangg 2 (2012) and Holiday: A Soldier Is Never Off Duty (2014). Sinha received critical praise for her performance inLootera (2013), for which she was nominated for Filmfare Award for Best Actress.
Sinha was born on 2 June 1987, to actors Shatrughan Sinha and Poonam Sinha. She is the youngest of three children with twin brothers, Luv Sinha and Kush Sinha. Her family belongs to Malik tribes. Sonakshi completed her schooling from Arya Vidya Mandir in Mumbai and graduated in Fashion Designing from Shreemati Nathibai Damodar Thackersey Women’s University, Mumbai, Maharashtra, India.
Sinha started her career as a costume designer, designing the costumes for films like Mera Dil Leke Dekho in 2005, and walked the ramp at the Lakme Fashion Week 2008 and then again in Lakme Fashion Week 2009.
She made her acting debut in the 2010 film Dabangg, in which she starred opposite Salman Khan. The film went on to become the highest grossing film of 2010, and ultimately emerged as an all-time blockbuster. Sinha had to lose 30 kg in preparation for the role as a village girl. Her performance was well received, with noted critic Taran Adarshnoting that “Sonakshi Sinha looks fresh, acts confidently and pairs off very well with Salman. Most importantly, she delivers the right expressions and is not overpowered by the galaxy of stars in the cast.”
She featured as the cover girl of Indian edition of Maxim magazine for the month December 2010. Although Sinha had no film release in 2011, she won quite a few awards for her debut. This included the Filmfare Award as well as the IIFA Awards among many others.
Sinha had four releases in 2012, her first being Prabhu Deva‘s Rowdy Rathore, opposite Akshay Kumar. The film opened to mixed reviews from critics, although had a strong opening at the box office, collecting approx. 150.6 million (US$2.5 million) on the first day and eventually becoming a blockbuster. However, critic Rajeev Masand criticized her ornamental role and wrote that Sinha ” seems to exist in this film only to have her midriff repeatedly pinched by Akshay Kumar”. Her next film, Shirish Kunder‘s Joker, also opposite Akshay Kumar proved to be a trade disaster at the box office, and received overwhelmingly negative reviews.
Her third film, Ashwni Dhir‘s Son of Sardar alongside Ajay Devgan was poorly received by the critics but proved to be an economic success. Critic Saibal CHatterjee from NDTVnoted that Sinha merely,”endeavours to be pretty and dainty amid all the madness”. Arbaaz Khan‘s Dabangg 2, the sequel to her immensely successful debut garnered little praise from critics, though proved to be a major financial success. Sinha also dubbed for the voice of Tooth in the Hindi version of Rise of the Guardians. As a result of the strong collections her films were gathering at the box office, she was recognised by ETC Business Awards, as the Highest Grossing actress of 2012.
Sinha’s first film of 2013 was Vikramaditya Motwane‘s period romance-drama Lootera opposite Ranveer Singh. Despite the film receiving a lukewarm response at the box office, both the film and Sinha gathered praise, with Sinha’s portrayal of Pakhi, a Bengali girl who is dying of tuberculosis, receiving universal acclaim from critics. Sarita Tanwar notes that “the star of the film is undoubtedly Sonakshi Sinha [who gives] a mature and refined performance. She lives the character body and soul.” Raja Sen agrees, saying that “Sonakshi Sinha plays Pakhi beautifully, creating a character who is immaculately wide-eyed and possesses casual, yet unmistakable, grace. It is a performance that starts off dreamily soft and turns harder, and she does well-etched dialogue justice like few actresses can. There’s a discernible vulnerability to Pakhi throughout the film, and Sinha brings out this fragility perfectly without ever overplaying it.” Critics were also appreciative of Sinha and Singh’s chemistry, with Taran Adarsh claiming that “Every frame of LOOTERA exudes sensuality, partly because the chemistry between the on-screen lovers – Ranveer and Sonakshi – is scorching. The fervor and passion the two actors emanate on screen, while living those characters, leaves you awe-struck.”
Sinha appeared in Milan Luthria‘s crime romance film Once Upon ay Time in Mumbai Dobaara!, the sequel to Once Upon a Time in Mumbaai, in which she was paired with Akshay Kumar again, as well as Imran Khan. The movie was a commercial disappointment and critic Mohar Basu labelled her a “a chatterbox replete with idioticity which the director frames as naiveness.” She then appeared in Tigmanshu Dhulia‘sBullett Raja alongside Saif Ali Khan, a box-office flop. Her final release of the year was Prabhu Deva’s R… Rajkumar opposite Shahid Kapoor. A moderate commercial success, the film and her performance received negative reviews. Taran Adarsh labelled her “repetitive” and noted that she needed to “reinvent herself”.
In 2014, after providing her voice for the voice of Jewel in the Hindi-dubbed Rio 2, Sinha was seen in A.R. Murugadoss‘s action thriller Holiday: A Soldier Is Never Off Duty, a remake of the director’s Tamil film Thuppakki. Starring opposite Akshay Kumar, Sinha appeared as a boxer. The film received mixed-to-positive reviews from critics and emerged as a box office hit. Jyoti Sharma Bawa said of Sinha’s portrayal: “Sonakshi has nothing to do much in the film and overacts in places. For an actor who has already proved her mettle in the acting department, this definitely is a downer.”
As of July 2014, Sinha is filming for three projects—Prabhu Deva’s Action Jackson with Ajay Devgn and Yami Gautam, Boney Kapoor‘s remake of Okkadu entitled Tevar alongsideArjun Kapoor and KS Ravikumar‘s Tamil film Lingaa with Rajnikanth. Sinha has also shot for a music video with Yo Yo Honey Singh. In July, Sinha jointly bought a team in the World Kabaddi League.
Sinha is a professed animal lover, and she had posed for a PETA campaign advocating the adoption and sterilization of dogs and cats.
|Denotes films that have not yet been released|
|2012||OMG – Oh My God!||Herself||Special appearance in song “Go Go Govinda”|
|2012||Son of Sardaar||Sukhmeet Kaur Sandhu|
|2012||Dabangg 2||Rajjo Pandey|
|2013||Himmatwala||Herself||Special appearance in song “Thank God It’s Friday”|
|2013||Lootera||Pakhi Roy Chaudhary|
|2013||Once Upon A Time In Mumbai Dobaara||Jasmine Sheikh|
|2013||Boss||Herself||Special appearance in songs “Party All Night” and “Har Kisi Ko”|
|2014||Holiday: A Soldier Is Never Off Duty||Saiba|
Awards and nominations
|2011||Annual Central European Bollywood Awards||Best Newcomer – Female||Dabangg||Won|
|Apsara Film & Television Producers Guild Awards||Best Female Debut||Won|
|Filmfare Awards||Best Female Debut||Won|
|The Global Indian Film and TV Honours||Most Promising Fresh New Face- Female||Won|
|International Indian Film Academy Awards||Star Debut of the Year – Female||Won|
|Lions Gold Awards||Favourite Debutant Actress||Won|
|Star Screen Awards||Most Promising Newcomer – Female||Won|
|Stardust Awards||Superstar of Tomorrow – Female||Won|
|Best Thriller/Action Actress||Nominated|
|Zee Cine Awards||Best Female Debut||Won|
|Best International Female Icon||Nominated|
|FICCI Frames Excellence Awards||Best Debut Actress||Won|
|Aaj Tak Awards||Best Debutante Actress||Won|
|Dadasaheb Phalke Awards||Best Debutant Actor – Female||Won|
|Bollywood Hungama Surfers Choice Movie Awards||Best Debut Actress||Won|
|2012||ETC Business Awards||Highest Grossing Actress||—||Won|
|People’s Choice Awards India||Favorite Movie Actress||Rowdy Rathore||Nominated|
|Favorite Youth Movie Icon||—||Nominated|
|2013||Stardust Awards||Best Thriller/Action Actress||Rowdy Rathore,
|Best Comedy/Romance Actress||Son of Sardar||Nominated|
|Nickelodeon Kids’ Choice Awards India||Best Movie Actress||—||Nominated|
|BIG Star Entertainment Awards||Most Entertaining Actor in a Romantic Role – Female||Lootera||Won|
|Most Entertaining Film Actor – Female||Nominated|
|2014||Filmfare Awards||Best Actress||Nominated|
|Apsara Film & Television Producers Guild Awards||Best Actress in a Leading Role||Nominated|
|Screen Awards||Best Actress||Nominated |
|Popular Choice (Female)||Nominated |
|Zee Cine Awards||Best Actress (Critics)||Won|
|IBNLive Movie Awards||Best Actress||Nominated |
|International Indian Film Academy Awards||Best Actress||Nominated|