Kushal Punjabi is an Indian film and television actor, who won the TV reality game show, Zor Ka Jhatka: Total Wipeout, the Indian version of US game show Wipeout in February 2011, taking home the prize of ₹5 million.
Punjabi has been in movies such as Farhan Akhtar's Lakshya and Karan Johars – Kaal, Utv's Goal, and Cinevista's Ssshhhhh. He has also appeared in a number of television series, most recently in Aasman se Aage on Life Ok where he plays the role of a choreographer; in addition he has participated in several reality shows, including Fear Factor, Mr. & Miss TV, Paisa Bhari Padega, Nautica Navigators Challenge, Ek Se Badhkar Ek, Zor Ka Jhatka and Jhalak Dikhhla Jaa.
He has been a professional Modern Jazz and Hip Hop dancer and choreographed the Gladrags Manhunt Megamodel & Mrs. India contests as well as various fashion shows and music videos. He choreographed and directed the 'Star Walk' Fashion event for UMEED (a NGO for children).
Early life and family
Punjabi was and brought up in a Sindhi Hindu family in Mumbai, Kushal's father is from Karachi and mother is from Hyderabad but has been born & raised in Mumbai. As a child, Punjabi was extremely active and started cycling, skating, swimming and dancing very early and in the coming years played football, athletics & swimming for his school & college. He loved travelling and being outdoors and his spirit of adventure made him an apt candidate for adventure sports which he did with great passion. His love of dance theatre and music helped him in becoming a serious actor and went on to do more than 20 tv shows, 5 films and plenty of music videos & commercials.
He started his career as a dancer & model, and participated in Gladrags Manhunt Contest, in 2000. He also appeared in music album of Shweta Shetty pop song Deewane To Deewane Hai in 1997. His television career began with TV series A mouthful of sky in 1995 for DD Metro channel followed by Love Marriage in 2002 on Zee TV, and has since appeared in a number of series like Don in 2006 for Star One, Santaan from 2007–2008 for Star Plus, Kasam se in 2006 for Zee Tv, Sshh koi hain for Star One and King Aasman ka ek raja for Sony Tv. He appeared as Sub-inspector in CID: Special Bureau, detective-crime Tv series, CID (on Sony TV) from 2003 to 2004 and did a small role in TV series, Kkusum. In 2004, he appeared as a lead in Dekho Magar Pyaar Se (on STAR Plus), an Indian adaptation of popular Venezuelan TV series, Mi Gorda Bella and also in popular comedy TV series, Kabhi Haan Kabhi Naa on Zee TV. His other shows were Antariksh in 2008 for Star Plus, Yeh dil chahe more in 2006 fr Star One, Hum Tum in 2008 for Zee Next, Rishta dot com on Sony Tv in 2010 for Yash Raj productions.He also appeared in STAR Plus TV series, Raja Ki Aayegi Baraat from 2008 to 2010. In 2010, he did a cameo in SAB TV's Gutur Gu, India's first silent comedy series. and then bagged a prominent role in Farhan Akhtar's film, Lakshya (2004), followed by Karan Johar's Kaal, which also starred Shah Rukh Khan and Ajay Devgan.
He is trained dancer-choreographer and worked as a dancer/trainer with Shiamak Davar for while. He has participated reality shows like, Mr. & Ms. TV (2007),Fear Factor, Fun on the Run and Ek Se Badhkar Ek (2008) on Zee TV, and in 2011 won the TV reality game show, Zor Ka Jhatka, the Indian version of "Wipeout!", which started with 28 contestants, in an obstacle course set in Argentina, and was hosted by Shah Rukh Khan., and is currently shooting for Balaji Film's Rock the Shaadi as 1 of the 3 main leads. He recently made a wild card entry in the dance reality show Jhalak Dikhhla Jaa.
|1997||Humko Ishq ne Maara -Dir. Arjun Sablok|
|1998||Bombay Boys -Dir. Kaizad Gustad|
|2003||Andaaz -Dir. Raj Kanwar|
|2003||Sssshhh... -Dir. Pawan Kaul/Cinevistaa|
|2004||Lakshya -Dir. Farhan Akhtar/Excel Ent.|
|2005||Kaal -Dir. Soham Shah/Dharma Productions|
|2007||Salaam-e-Ishq -Dir. Nikhil Advani|
|2007||Dhan Dhana Dhan Goal -Dir.Vivek Agnihotri/Utv|
|2015||Crazy Cukkad Family -Dir. Ritesh Menon/ Praksh Jha Productions|
|1995||A Mouthful of Sky" (TV Series)|
|2002||Love Marriage (TV series)|
|2003||CID (TV series)|
|2004||Dekho Magar Pyaar Se (TV series)|
|Kabhi Haan Kabhi Naa|
|2004||King Aassman Ka Ek Raja (TV series)|
|2005||Yeh Dil Chahe More (TV series)|
|Antarishk (TV series)|
|Fear Factor (Reality)|
|Paisa Bhari Padega (Reality)|
|2006||Kasam Se (TV series)|
|Antariksh (TV series)|
|Sssshhh... Phir Koi Hai" (TV series) STAR One|
|2007||Mr. & Ms. TV (Reality)|
|Santaan (TV series)|
|Fun on the Run (Reality)|
|2008||Hum Tum (TV series)|
|Ek Se Badhkar Ek (Reality)|
|Raja Ki Aayegi Baraat (TV series)|
|Mr. & Ms. TV (Reality) Quit|
|Sitaron ki Jung (Reality)|
|2010||Guttur Gu (TV series)|
|Rishta dot com (TV series)|
|2011||Zor ka Jhatka (Reality)|
|2012||Aasman Se Aage (TV Series)|
|2012||Teri Meri Love Stories (TV Series)(1 episode)|
|2013||Welcome - Baazi Mehmaan-Nawaazi ki|
|2013||Hum Ne Li Hai- Shapath|
|2014||Jhalak Dikhhla Jaa 7 (Reality)|
- "Kushal Punjabi Wins Zor Ka Jhatka". NDTV Movies. 26 February 2011.
- "Kushal Punjabi wins 'Zor Ka Jhatka'". The Times of India. 26 February 2011.
- "Kushal Punjabi, model-actor". Indiatimes.com. 24 January 2005.
- "'He's a bit of a loud mouth'". Khaleej Times. 13 June 2009.
- "Kushal Punjabi". Stardust. 1 February 2008.
- "Kushal's silent cameo". The Times of India. 20 March 2010.
- "The Freshers' Club". Indian Express. 20 November 2004.
- "To each his own: Zee TV's "Ek Se Badhkar Ek" ruffles feathers, infuses new hope too.". The Hindu. 9 August 2008.
- "Kushal Punjabi wins Zor Ka Jhatka". Bollywood Hungama News Network. 26 February 2011.