Preity Zinta got off to a dream start in Bollywood debuting opposite none other than Shahrukh Khan in ace director Mani Ratnam’s ‘Dil Se’ in 1998. Although her role was short but she was appreciated by one and all. This dimpled lass from Himachal Pradesh was originally supposed to make her screen debut opposite Hrithik Roshan in Shekhar Kapur’s ‘Tara Rum Pum Pum’ but the movie got shelved.
Preity took time in establishing herself as one of the top leading ladies of Bollywood and reached the pinnacle of success during 2003-2005. But after that it has been a tough ride for this bubbly actress. With the onslaught and rise of new brigade comprising of stars like Katrina Kaif, Kareena Kapoor and Priyanka Chopra, senior actresses like Preity have been relegated to the backseat. But times are quickly changing and the phenomenal comeback of Sridevi last year can trigger some great scripts written for the talented Koi Mil Gaya star.
Preity has done various roles and her portrayal of characters combined with her screen persona have contributed to a change in the concept of a Hindi Film Heroine. Some of her noteworthy performances are those of a bubbly girl in ‘Soldier’, a CBI officer in ‘Sangharsh’, a Kashmiri beauty in ‘Mission Kashmir’, a surrogate mother in ‘Chori Chori Chupke Chupke’, an adopted daughter in ‘Dil Hai Tumhara’, a modern girl in ‘Koi Mil Gaya’, a brave TV journalist in ‘Lakshya’ and an ambitious wife in ‘Kabhi Alvida Na Kehna’.
Below is a Top 5 list of Preity Zinta’s Best Performances.
1) Kal Ho Naa Ho: Preity played the role of ‘Naina Catherine Kapoor’, an insecure and angry young woman who falls in love with a man suffering from a fatal heart disease, to utmost conviction. She received her first and only ‘Filmfare Award for Best Actress’ for her brilliant performance in the film.
2) Veer Zaara: Zinta played a Pakistani girl ‘Zaara Hayaat Khan’ in the epic love saga ‘Veer Zaara’ directed by the legendary Yash Chopra. It was a mature portrayal as Preity mastered the finer nuances of Urdu language required for the character.
3) Kya Kehna: This was a role that got her major recognition as an actress. Kundan Shah’s Kya Kehna, where she played the role of ‘Priya Bakshi’, a teenage single mother who fights social prejudice, with elan. A heart- felt performance that won her a nomination in the ‘Best Actress’ category.
4) Dil Chahta Hai: Preity played the role of a vibrant and confused girl ‘Shalini’ with ease in Dil Chahta Hai which turned out to be a path-breaking cult classic. It’s also, arguably, the best film of Preity Zinta’s career.
5) Salaam Namaste: Preity played the female protagonist ‘Amber’, a single young woman who leaves India to make her own life in Melbourne, in this beautiful Yashraj Films love story Salaam Namaste. Preity portrayed the character of a girl who has a live-in relationship with her love interest and then struggles with an unexpected pregnancy.
Here is wishing Preity Zinta a very Happy Birthday and a year filled with success and happiness. We hope to see her in good meaningful roles in the future. Her best is yet to come!
Abhishek Sharma tweets @abhu_sharma
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