Desai at Bol Bachchan Interview at Mehboob Studio
12 September 1988 (age 25)
Surat, Gujarat, India
|Other names||Prachi, Bani|
Prachi Desai (born 12 September 1988) is an Indian film and television actress. She has worked in films like Rock On!!, Once Upon a Time in Mumbai, Bol Bachchan and I, Me Aur Main, that earned her both critics' and commercial appreciation. She started her career as Bani Walia in the Hindi soap opera Kasamh Se that got her overnight fame, making her the household name. Prachi is the endorser, spokesperson, brand ambassador and the face of Neutrogena products in India. She is also the brand ambassador of Goa Tourism, a popular holiday destination in India.
Desai was born on 12 September 1988 in Surat, Gujarat, India. She studied in St. Joseph Convent, Panchgani and completed her schooling until ninth grade in Surat. After that, she went to Pune for higher studies. She studied at Sinhagad College, Vadgaon, Pune. She was in Pune, India for higher studies and had almost finished her junior college when her pictures were sent for audition. She was 17 when she left her studies and started her career with Kasamh Se.
PD starred in the serial Kasamh Se on Zee TV that got her fame. She was referred to as the most popular Television actress of the time. For the show, Desai earned many awards and nominations for Best Actress at several award functions. After 2 years of work in 564 episodes of the series, Desai left Kasam Se to act in Bollywood film Rock On!!. She was replaced by Gurdeep Kohli. Kasamh Se ended on 12 March 2009 as the show lost popularity, reason being replacement of Desai, as experts say. In the last episode, Desai made a special appearance as the former Bani. She also did a two-day cameo in Kasautii Zindagii Kay, which was aired on Star Plus. She played a school student in Prerna's school.
On 7 September 2007, Desai entered Jhalak Dikhhla Jaa, the Indian version of America's dancing show, Dancing with the Stars, with choreographer Deepak Singh. She was eliminated on 10 November 2007. However, she entered the contest again via the wild-card entry on 23 November 2007. Desai then landed a spot in the grand finale of the dance show on 15 December 2007 and won the first place amongst the contestants. She was awarded the dancing star of Jhalak Dikhhla Jaa 2. Desai also competed in a tribute show to Jhalak competition called Dard-e-Disco, alongside other former contestants, which aired on Sony Entertainment Television Asia on 31 December 2007.
Film Debut & Breakthrough (2008–present)
Desai's first film was Rock On!! (2008), where she played the wife of Farhan Akhtar. Desai had to leave her role of "Bani" in Kasamh Se to act in Rock On at the age of 19. Her performance was highly appreciated throughout the film. Movie Critic Taran Adarsh mentions: "Prachi Desai scores in her very first feature. She has a challenging role and footage-wise too, it's substantial. Desai brings in a lot of freshness and poise. Plus, she's a competent actor." It was an average box-office commercial but was critically appreciated, even getting the National Film Award for Best Feature Film in Hindi. She got several nominations and awards as debutant including the Filmfare Award. She even won Anandalok Awards as Best Actress (Hindi).
In July 2010, she appeared in Once Upon a Time in Mumbaai with Ajay Devgan, Emraan Hashmi and Kangana Ranaut. The film proved to be a big box office success and critically praised. "Prachi Desai is a bundle of talent who proves her mettle yet again. She's proficient in emotional scenes and sizzles in the BOBBY song-sequence." says Taran Adarsh. Desai's performance titled her the "Supporting Actress of the Year" and earned her many awards including IIFA Awards, Stardust Awards, Zee Cine Awards, Apsara Film & Television Producers Guild Awards and many more and nominations for Supporting Actress Award at Filmfare Awards and Star Screen Awards.
Desai then made a cameo appearance in Teri Meri Kahaani along with Priyanka Chopra and Shahid Kapoor which released in June 2012. It was a tri-periodic film and she is casted for 1960 segment. Kunal Kohli, the film's director, says he cast her because he liked her in Rock On!! and Once Upon a Time in Mumbaai. "Prachi will definitely make people sit up and notice her, as she has some of the most entertaining and romantic scenes in the film. She effortlessly held her own alongside Priyanka and Shahid and is really coming into her own as an actress. She had a good run with Rock On!! and OUATIM, and now she's doing Teri Meri Kahaani. Slowly and steadily, she's making it into the big league. It's a welcome and much-deserved entrance." he says. Though a cameo, Prachi had an important role and was much appreciated both publicly and critically. Taran Adarsh mentions in his movie review, "Prachi Desai is sparkling in a cameo."
Prachi then appeared in full fledged role in 2012 blockbuster film Bol Bachchan opposite Abhishek Bachchan, along with Ajay Devgn and Asin. The film proved to be the biggest box office success for Desai till date. She replaced Genelia D'souza who withdrew from the film for unknown reasons. Bol Bachchan director Rohit Shetty says, "What I like about Prachi is that she's extremely talented and very sincere. She is a natural performer. With time and experience, she will grow into a star. In my film, she plays a young Rajput girl who is Ajay Devgn's sister, and the only girl in a group of pehelwans. Prachi is effortless in her scenes." Alongside being a big box office hit, Desai was again garnered with loads of appreciation for her charming role in the film and many nominations for Supporting Actress Award at several award function. Movie Review by Taran Adarsh mentions, "Prachi Desai is striking, getting ample opportunity to showcase her talent. In fact, one hopes to see more of this talented actress in zany entertainers."
Desai was last seen in debutant director Kapil Sharma's I, Me Aur Main alongside John Abraham and Chitrangada Singh. For the film, Desai learnt how to play the piano. The film portrays her as a hairstylist for which she took tips from Bollywood stylist Adhuna Akhtar. Desai's look in a song of the film was inspired from Katy Perry and Beyonce. The film was an average grosser at the Indian Box Office, but it raised rave reviews for Desai from critics, some terming her as 'the highlight of the film', 'the surprise package' and 'the best performance in the film'. Film critic Joginder Tuteja says, "One actor who leaves a mark is Prachi Desai. She is a revelation as a free spirited girl." Rubina Khan of First Post said, "Best performance in the film is by Prachi Desai as the spunky girl next door, real and effortless." Ananya Bhattacharya of Zee News says, "Prachi Desai is a breath of fresh air- a complete surprise. She performs Gauri to the hilt and pulls off a stunner." Taran Adarsh of Bollywood Hungama mentions, "Prachi Desai adds so much zest in those tiny little moments, enacting the spunky girl part so well."
Desai then appeared in Kollywood director K. S. Ravikumar's first Bollywood venture Policegiri. The film is Hindi remake of Sammy which stars Sanjay Dutt and Prakash Raj. The film portrays her as a Software Engineer. The film was critically average, gathering "not so bad" reviews for Desai.
Desai is the brand ambassador for Goa Tourism Board, a popular holiday destination in India. She is the only spokesperson for Neutrogena Products in India. She has also promoted Oral-B Smile India Movement with Sonali Bendre. Active Wheel endorsement with Salman Khan was a top rated among viewers for the chemistry between the two. On viewers' request, the other several ads of the brand were cancelled, and the same advertisement airs till date. She also endorses Nyle Shampoo. She has also has been signed up to be the brand ambassador of Pure-it water purifier with Farhan Akhtar. Recently Desai was chosen the brand ambassador for Gili Signature Diamond Jewellery along with several other actresses. She also endorses Taj Mahal Tea along with actor Saif Ali Khan.
|2008||Rock On!!||Sakshi Shroff||Nominated—Filmfare Award for Best Female Debut|
|2009||Life Partner||Prachi Jadega|
|2010||Once Upon a Time in Mumbaai||Mumtaaz||Nominated—Filmfare Award for Best Supporting Actress|
|2012||Teri Meri Kahaani||Mahi||Cameo|
|2012||Bol Bachchan||Radhika Raghuvanshi|
|2013||I, Me Aur Main||Gauri Dandekar|
|2006–09||Kasamh Se||Bani Dixit/Walia||Indian Telly Award for Fresh New Face - Female (2006)
Indian Telly Award for Best Onscreen Couple - with Ram Kapoor (2006)
Indian Telly Award for Best Actress in a Lead Role (2007)
|2006||Kasautii Zindagii Kay||Prachi Chauhan||Cameo|
|2007||Jhalak Dikhhla Jaa (season 2)||Herself (Contestant)||Winner of the season|
Awards and Nominations
|2006||Indian Telly Award for Fresh New Face of the Year (Female)||Kasamh Se||Won|
|Indian Telly Award for Couple of the Year (along with Ram Kapoor)||Kasamh Se||Won|
|Kalakar Award for Best Actress (Television)||Kasamh Se||Won|
|2007||Indian Telly Award for Best Actress||Kasamh Se||Won|
|Sansui Television Award for Best Actress||Kasamh Se||Won|
|Zee Rishton Ka Utsav: Favourite Bhabhi-Nanad Rishta (along with Ashwini Kalsekar)||Kasamh Se||Won|
|2008||Sansui Television Award for Best Popular Actress||Kasamh Se||Won|
|The Global Indian TV Honours: Best Actress||Kasamh Se||Won|
|2009||Indian Telly Award: Special Award for Successful Bollywood Breakthrough||Rock On!!||Won|
|Filmfare Award for Best Female Debut||Rock On!!||Nominated|
|Screen Award for Most Promising Newcomer – Female||Rock On!!||Nominated|
|Anandalok Awards for Best Actress (Hindi)||Rock On!!||Won|
|Sabse Favourite Kaun: Best Newcomer Female||Rock On!!||Won|
|Stardust Award for Superstar of Tomorrow Female||Rock On!!||Nominated|
|2011||Filmfare Award for Best Supporting Actress||Once Upon a Time in Mumbaai||Nominated|
|Star Screen Award for Best Supporting Actress||Once Upon A Time in Mumbaai||Nominated|
|Apsara Award for Best Actress in a Supporting Role||Once Upon A Time in Mumbaai||Won|
|IIFA Award for Best Supporting Actress||Once Upon A Time in Mumbaai||Won|
|Zee Cine Award for Best Actor in a Supporting Role – Female||Once Upon A Time in Mumbaai||Won|
|Lions Gold Award for Best Supporting Actress||Once Upon A Time in Mumbaai||Won|
|Stardust Award for Best Actress in An Ensemble Cast||Once Upon A Time in Mumbaai||Won|
|Global Indian Film & Television Honour for Best Actress in a Supporting Role||Once Upon A Time in Mumbaai||Nominated|
|Top 10 Bollywood: Supporting Actress of the Year Poll||Once Upon A Time in Mumbaai||Won|
|2013||Stardust Award for Breakthrough Supporting Performance (Female)||Bol Bachchan||Nominated|
- "I am not quitting 'Kasamh Se': Prachi Desai". MSN Entertainment. Retrieved 28 December 2010.
- "Prachi Desai is new face of Neutrogena cosmetics in India". Mid-Day. 4 September 2009. Retrieved 28 December 2010.
- "I am lucky:Prachi Desai". Times of India. 9 December 2007. Retrieved 28 December 2010.
- "Prachi Desai". Shahfashion. Retrieved 28 December 2010.
- "Prachi Desai wants to 'rock on' with Shahid and Hrithik". Indian Express. Retrieved 28 December 2010.
- "Prachi Desai wins Jhalak Dikhlaja 2". Rediff. Retrieved 28 December 2010.
- "Dard-E-Disco on 31 December[sic], 9 pm on Sony Entertainment Television". Indiantelevision.com. Retrieved 28 December 2010.
- "Prachi couldn't handle saree in Life Partner". One India. Retrieved 28 December 2010.
- "Once Upon A Time in Mumbaai: Movie Review". Bollywood Hungama. Retrieved 28 December 2010.
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