Kalki Koechlin

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Kalki Koechlin
Kalki Koechlin2.jpg
Kalki at Manish Malhotra's fashion show "Men For Mijwan", 2014
Born Kalki
(1984-01-10) 10 January 1984 (age 30)[1][2]
Bommayapalayam, Tamil Nadu, India
Alma mater Hebron School, Ooty
Occupation Actress, screenwriter[3][4]
Years active 2008–present
Spouse(s) Anurag Kashyap (2011–2013)

Kalki Koechlin (French: [kalki kœʃlɛ̃]) (born 10 January 1984[1]) is an Indian film actress of French descent who debuted in Anurag Kashyap's critically acclaimed Hindi film Dev.D (2009). She played the character of Chandramukhi in the film, a modern take on Sarat Chandra Chattopadhyay's Bengali novella Devdas, and won the Filmfare Award for Best Supporting Actress for her portrayal.

Koechlin subsequently featured in the commercially successful comedy-dramas Zindagi Na Milegi Dobara (2011) and Yeh Jawaani Hai Deewani (2013), both of which earned her nominations for the Filmfare Award for Best Supporting Actress. She also worked as a co-screenwriter with then husband Anurag Kashyap.[5][6]

Kalki Koechlin Bags The Best Actress Award At The Tallinn Black Nights Film Festival for her role in Margarita, with a Straw. [7]

Early life[edit]

Her father Joel Koechlin came to India from France, 60 years ago and met Kalki Koechlin's mother, Francoise Armandie, at the Sri Aurobindo Ashram in Auroville, Puducherry. Her parents are devotees of Sri Aurobindo. Eventually they settled in Kallatty, a village near Ooty in Tamil Nadu, where he established a business designing hang-gliders and microlight aircraft. Her ancestor Maurice Koechlin, a French structural engineer, played an important role in the design and construction of the Eiffel Tower.[8]

Koechlin initially attended Kindergarten at Hebron School, Ooty, then did a short stint in a Mysore-based school before completing her schooling back at Hebron, Ooty. Following in her brother's footsteps she attended university in London. Koechlin studied drama and theatre in Goldsmiths, University of London, where she also worked with a theatre company called Theatre of Relativity for two years. She performed in various plays like David Hare's The Blue Room, Marivaux's The Dispute and a devised play The Rise of the Wild Hunt in her two-year stint with the theatre group.[9][10]

Film career[edit]

Koechlin later decided to move to Mumbai to try her luck in Hindi cinema. She was doing modelling assignments for television commercials after being shortlisted for the role of Chandramukhi (Chanda) in Dev.D. She was one of the people to be auditioned for the role of the prostitute.[11] Koechlin can speak Tamil, English and French; she had to learn Hindi to prepare for her role in Dev.D. About her role Koechlin said, "My character is much younger and there's much more to it than just being a prostitute. When she is not entertaining customers, she dresses up like any other girl in jeans and stuff and leads a normal life. My role in the film has a controversial streak to it, but I still don't know what would have been an ideal role to debut with. I've got the chance to work with a good director in Dev D and I feel I'm lucky enough." Koechlin was apprehensive about how people will judge her after seeing her in the role.[12] She co-founded Quaff Theatre, a theatre group in 2008.[8]

Upon release, her portrayal of the modern Chandramukhi, who goes from an innocent schoolgirl (Leni) to a vivacious prostitute (Chanda) was critically acclaimed saying "Kalki shows sparks in the scenes".[13] Hindustan Times said, "Enter Chanda, the multilingual call girl who can seduce in Hindi, Tamil, English and French. With her bee-stung lips, unusual face and refreshing lack of acting guile, Kalki Koechlin imbues the part with a touching fragility."[14] For her work in Dev D, she was awarded the Filmfare Award for Best Supporting Actress in 2010. Koechlin paired with the actor Imran Khan for a Coca Cola advertisement.[15] The advert was voted the best of the IPL by the TOI Advertisement awards.

Zindagi Na Milegi Dobara press conference at Chandigarh

In 2011, she was seen in Shaitan. Film critic Komal Nahta commented, "Kalki Koechlin performs with admirable ease". She then starred in Zoya Akhtar's Zindagi Na Milegi Dobara alongside Abhay Deol, Hrithik Roshan, Farhan Akhtar and Katrina Kaif; film critic Taran Adarsh commented, "Kalki plays a Mumbai girl belonging to the upper crest and though it's not a typical 'heroine' role, Kalki infuses life into the character, fitting into the conceived character accurately". Komal Nahta wrote, "Kalki Koechlin does very well in a difficult role she stands her own amongst the other actors". Box office India declared the film a super hit.

She co-wrote and also starred in Anurag Kashyap's That Girl in Yellow Boots film critics Komal Nahta commented, "Kalki Koechlin delivers a nuanced performance as the tumultuous Ruth. She uses her eyes and body language to the hilt to express varying emotions". Taran Adarsh wrote, "THAT GIRL IN YELLOW BOOTS is embellished with top notch performances, with Kalki scoring brownie points for her super performance in the film. Playing a stylish, sensible, sharp-witted British girl supporting herself by working illegally in a massage parlor, Kalki has the right look for her part, but it does take a lot of guts to portray this intricate role. She has an inimitable talent and onscreen presence by means of which she single-handedly carries the film with her gut wrenching raw performance". Kalki has also helped her husband Anurag Kashyap to write the 2011 film That Girl in Yellow Boots.

In September 2013, she was featured in a Video called It's Your Fault for Anti-Rape Campaign along with VJ Juhi Pandey. The Video went viral on Internet with over 150,000 views in just 2 days.[17]

On Stage[edit]

Kalki's first love remain the stage. She has written, produced and acted in many stage plays in India. Most recently in Colour Blind which she co-wrote.[18][19] She won the prestigious MetroPlus Playwright award in 2009 for the play "Skeleton Woman" which she co-wrote with Prashant Prakash.[20] Other plays include Trivial Disasters, "The Real Inspector Hound", "Hair"(where she incarnates Rapunzel) "Hamlet, the Clown Prince" (Directed by Rajat Kapoor) among some of her works.

Personal life[edit]

She married filmmaker Anurag Kashyap on 30 April 2011 in a private wedding ceremony in Ooty.[21] The two had been dating since the release of Dev.D.[22][23] Koechlin was unemployed for a year and a half after Dev.D. Koechlin was cast in her husband's next films That Girl in Yellow Boots, both produced and directed by Kashyap and Shaitan which was produced by Kashyap but directed by Bejoy Nambiar.[24] On 13 November 2013 both Koechlin and Kashyap issued a joint statement saying they were separating.[25]


Year Film Role Language Notes
2009 Dev.D Lenny / Chanda / Chandramukhi Hindi
2010 The Film Emotional Atyachar Sophie Hindi
2011 Shaitan Amrita "Amy" Jayshankar Hindi
2011 Zindagi Na Milegi Dobara Natasha Hindi
2011 That Girl in Yellow Boots Ruth Edscer English / Hindi
2011 My Friend Pinto Maggie Hindi
2012 Trishna Herself English / Hindi Special appearance
2012 Shanghai Shalini Sahay Hindi
2013 Ek Thi Daayan Lisa Dutt Hindi
2013 Yeh Jawaani Hai Deewani Aditi Mehra Hindi
2014 Happy Ending Vishakha Hindi
2014 Margarita, With a Straw Laila Hindi Post-production[26]
2014 Jiah aur Jiah Jiah Garewal Hindi Post-production[26]
2014 Severing Ties TBA Hindi Filming[27]


Year Award Category Film Result
2010 Filmfare Awards Best Supporting Actress Dev.D Won[28]
2010 Apsara Film & Television Producers Guild Award Best Actress in a Supporting Role Dev.D Nominated
2012 Filmfare Awards Best Supporting Actress Zindagi Na Milegi Dobara Nominated[29]
2012 Screen Awards Best Actress Shaitan Nominated
2012 Screen Awards Best Villain Shaitan Nominated
2012 Stardust Awards Best Actress Shaitan Nominated
2012 The Global Indian Film and TV Honours Best Supporting Actress Shaitan Won
2012 IIFA Awards Best Supporting Actress Zindagi Na Milegi Dobara Nominated
2014 Filmfare Awards Best Supporting Actress Yeh Jawaani Hai Deewani Nominated[30]


  1. ^ a b Parsara, Noyon Jyoti (5 April 2010), Kalki Shares Her B'Day with Duggu, Mail Today, retrieved 11 January 2013 
  2. ^ "Don't believe Wikipedia, says birthday girl Kalki Koechlin". NDTV. 10 January 2013. Retrieved 10 January 2013. 
  3. ^ "Kalki had to strive hard for success". Hindustan Times. 17 September 2011. Retrieved 4 March 2012. 
  4. ^ Seema Sinha (1 September 2011). "I am a very happy person: Kalki". The Times of India. Retrieved 4 March 2012. 
  5. ^ "Kalki had to strive hard for success". Hindustan Times. 17 September 2011. Retrieved 4 March 2012. 
  6. ^ Seema Sinha (1 September 2011). "I am a very happy person: Kalki". The Times of India. Retrieved 4 March 2012. 
  7. ^ Kalki Koechlin Bags The Best Actress Award At The Tallinn Black Nights Film Festival
  8. ^ a b "CINEMA: Fair Factor". Tehelka Magazine, Vol 9, Issue 22. 2 June 2012. 
  9. ^ "Kalki Koechlin – Biography, Photo, Movies, Kalki Koechlin Wallpapers, Videos, Songs". Chakpak.com. Retrieved 24 June 2010. 
  10. ^ "Actress Kalki Koechlin – Movie Dev D – Director Anurag Kashyap – French Connection". Oneindia.in. 9 February 2009. Retrieved 24 June 2010. 
  11. ^ "'Dev D' is not like Sudhir Mishra's 'Aur Devdas'". The Hindu. 10 December 2008. Retrieved 4 March 2012. 
  12. ^ "Dev D not a dream debut: Kalki". NDTV. Retrieved 24 June 2010. 
  13. ^ "Bollywood Reviews – Dev D Review – Anurag Kashyap". Oneindia.in. 6 February 2009. Retrieved 24 June 2010. 
  14. ^ Baliga, Shashi (6 February 2009). "Clever, stylish, but low on soul". Hindustan Times. Retrieved 18 February 2009. 
  15. ^ "Bollywood's classics come alive on TV again". Rediff.com. 16 May 2011. Retrieved 28 July 2011. 
  16. ^ "That Girl in Yellow Boots". Chicago Sun-Times. 14 December 2011. Retrieved 3 March 2012. 
  17. ^ "Video of Kalki Koechlin and VJ Juhi Pandey on Rape goes Viral". Retrieved 21 September 2013. 
  18. ^ "Theatre Review: Colour Blind". The Times of India. 7 Feb 2014. 
  19. ^ "Decoding the Bard". Verve Magazine. 26 Feb 2014. 
  20. ^ "Prakash, Koechlin win MetroPlus Playwright Award". The Hindu. 1 Feb 2009. 
  21. ^ "Anurag, Kalki To Tie The Knot on April 30". Movies.ndtv.com. Retrieved 28 July 2011. 
  22. ^ "Kalki Koechlin getting married – Movies News – Bollywood – ibnlive". Ibnlive.in.com. Retrieved 28 July 2011. 
  23. ^ Fainaru, Dan (10 September 2010). "That Girl in Yellow Boots &#124. She also acted in the film Shanghai; Review | Screen". Screendaily.com. Retrieved 28 July 2011. 
  24. ^ http://daily.bhaskar.com/article/ENT-i-create-work-for-myself-kalki-koechlin-2433049.html
  25. ^ PTI (15 November 2013). "Marriage in trouble! Anurag Kashyap, Kalki Koechlin take time off from each other". India Today. Retrieved 15 November 2013. 
  26. ^ a b Bhattacharya, Roshmila (16 July 2014). "Kalki Koechlin to play Ophelia". The Times of India. Retrieved 17 July 2014. 
  27. ^ Baker, Steven. "Gulshan Devaiah: "I play Kalki's husband in Severing Ties"". Digital Spy. Retrieved 11 February 2014. 
  28. ^ "Winners of 55th Idea Filmfare Awards 2009". Bollywood Hungama. 27 February 2010. Retrieved 28 January 2014. 
  29. ^ "Nominations for 57th Idea Filmfare Awards 2011". Bollywood Hungama. 11 January 2012. Retrieved 28 January 2014. 
  30. ^ "59th Idea Filmfare Awards Nominations". 14 January 2014. 

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