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Thread: Vidya Balan

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    Vidya Balan

    Vidya Balan (Tamil: வித்யா பாலன், Malayalam: വിദ്യാ ബാലന്*, Hindi: विद्या बालन, born January 1, 1978)[1] is an award-winning Indian actress who appears in Bollywood movies.

    Balan, who began her career starring in many music videos, soap operas and commercials, made her acting debut in the Bengali film, Bhalo Theko (2003), for which she won critical acclaim, and had her Hindi film debut with Parineeta (2005), for which she received a Filmfare Best Debut Award. She received her first commercial success with Rajkumar Hirani's Lage Raho Munna Bhai (2006) and has thus established herself as one of the most promising actresses of the industry.

    Early life, until 2002
    Vidya Balan grew up in Mumbai and attended St. Anthony's Girls High School, St. Xavier's College, Bombay and later the University of Mumbai. She graduated from college with a sociology degree.

    Balan's movie career started when she was signed to appear in the Malayalam film Chakram, alongside superstar Mohanlal but the movie was shelved. After that, she was signed for a Tamil film, Run, but for reasons undisclosed, she was dropped after a first schedule and replaced by Meera Jasmine.[2] In the jinx driven industry, Vidya was dropped from her second Tamil movie "Manasellam" opposite Srikanth, on the grounds of 'non-performance' and was replaced by Trisha Krishnan.

    She then turned to television advertising. From 1998 onwards, she appeared in numerous television ads, many of which were directed by Pradeep Sarkar. She also took supporting roles in music videos, appearing with singers and bands such as Euphoria, Shubha Mudgal, and Pankaj Udhas. Vidya also portrayed the role of Radhika Mathur in a few episodes of the first season of Hum Paanch, but was later replaced by Amita Nangia at the end of the first season.

    Breakthrough, 2003 - present
    In 2003, she appeared in the Bengali film, Bhalo Theko, for which she won the Anand Lok Puraskar Best Actress award in Kolkata. Balan next made her Hindi film debut in the critically acclaimed Parineeta. The film performed moderately well at the box office[3] and her performance was acclaimed by critics,[4] earning her a Filmfare Best Female Debut Award and a nomination for Filmfare Best Actress Award.


    After the success of her first two films, the same producer who dropped her from Manasellam was keen to sign her opposite Kamal Hassan for Dasavatharam. But Vidya rejected the offer and Asin Thottumkal was signed instead. In 2006, she appeared opposite Sanjay Dutt in the blockbuster film Lage Raho Munna Bhai. Once again her performance was well received by critics[5] and the film went on to become the second highest grossing film of that year.[6]

    Mani Ratnam's critically acclaimed Guru was Balan's first release in 2007, in which she played a woman with a physical disability. The film did very well at the box office[7] and her role was appreciated.[8] Her next two releases, Salaam-e-Ishq: A Tribute To Love (2007) and Eklavya: The Royal Guard (2007) failed to do well[9] but the latter was selected as India's official entries to the Oscars for the 80th Academy Awards.[10] Vidya's latest two releases, Heyy Babyy (2007) and Bhool Bhulaiya (2007) have fared very well at the box office.[11]

    Personal life
    Her father, P. R. Balan, is the Vice President of ETC Channel and her mother is a homemaker. Balan also has an older sister named Priya.

    In a video interview, Vidya has stated that she is "extremely spiritual", has a "firm faith in God" and visits temples everyday.[12]

    Gossip columnists have linked Vidya with many of her co-stars but she strongly denied the allegations, saying that they were "vile".[13]

    Awards and nominations
    Filmfare Awards

    * 2006: Filmfare Best Female Debut Award, Parineeta
    * 2006: FairOne Filmfare Face of the Year, Parineeta[14]


    * 2006: Filmfare Best Actress Award, Parineeta[15]

    Star Screen Awards

    * 2006: Star Screen Award Most Promising Newcomer - Female, Parineeta
    Zee Cine Awards

    * 2006: Zee Cine Award Best Female Debut, Parineeta


    * 2006: Zee Cine Award Best Actor- Female, Parineeta

    International Indian Film Academy Awards

    * 2006: IIFA Best Female Debut, Parineeta


    * 2007: IIFA Best Actress Award, Lage Raho Munnabhai

    Stardust Awards

    * 2006: Stardust Superstar of Tomorrow - Female, Parineeta

    Other Awards

    * 2003: Anandlok Puraskar Awards, Best Actress, Bhalo Theko
    * 2006: Star's Sabsey Favourite Nayi Heroine, Parineeta

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