Shriya at the special screening of Thithi
Shriya Sachin Pilgaonkar
25 April 1989
As a child, Pilgaonkar trained to become a professional swimmer and won several medals while in school. Believing that she might become a translator or a linguist when she grew up, Pilgaonkar also took classes in Japanese when she was a child. Later deciding to take a different route, Pilgaonkar completed her Bachelor's degree in Sociology at St. Xavier's College in Mumbai. Pilgaonkar learned the Kathak dance as a child.
At the age of five, Pilgaonkar first appeared on television in the Hindi serial Tu Tu Main Main, playing a boy named Bittu. Pilgaonkar made her stage debut in 2012 with her performance in Karan Shetty's 10-minute short play Freedom Of Love. The play was a part of the NCPA's Short and Sweet Festival. In the play, she acted, sang and danced.
After her performance in Freedom of Love, Pilgaonkar made her big screen debut with the 2013 Marathi film Ekulti Ek. In the film, she plays the role of Swara, the daughter of Arun Deshpande (Sachin Pilgaonakar) and Nandini (Supriya Pilgaonkar). She was offered the role of Swara by her father (Sachin Pilgaonkar) who wrote, directed, and produced the film. Pilgaonkar said, "He has been credited for launching many a talent, including my mother. When he offered me the film, I didn't want a favour. But he corrected me, saying, 'I am not stupid to invest resources without reason'." She also added, "Experience-wise I am a beginner but I think it's a wonderful time to be in the industry. There is so much happening, so much changing. I feel proud that I am doing my first film with my father." This movie debut led her to win six awards. Among them was the Maharashtra State Government Award for Best Debut Actress, which she received at the 51st Maharashtra State Film Awards. The film received average to positive reviews from critics. A critic of The Times of India gave the film 3/5 stars, stating "It's the perfect launch for his (Sachin Pilgaonkar) daughter Shriya into films and she does not disappoint."
Following her role in Ekulti Ek, Pilgaonkar participated in other stage and film projects. She was approached by theatre veteran actor Akarsh Khurana to star in Internal Affairs and Common People. After appearing in both, she received an opportunity to work in the French film Un plus une, helmed by Oscar-winning director Claude Lelouch. In the film, she played the role of Ayanna, an Indian dancer and actor.
Pilgaonkar made her Bollywood debut in the 2016 film Fan, written and directed by Maneesh Sharma and produced by Aditya Chopra through Yash Raj Films. Pilgaonkar was selected for her role from the audition of 750 girls conducted by Maneesh Sharma, and she considered getting a role alongside Shah Rukh Khan a big breakthrough. In the film, she plays the role of Neha, a Delhi-based call center girl and Gaurav's friend. She was shooting for both the films Fan and Un plus une at the same time.
After the release of Fan, Pilgaonkar was overwhelmed by the response. Of the reception of the film, she said, "Honestly, I did not want to have any expectation because it was a small role and we had two Shah Rukhs in the film but I am so happy that everyone took notice and has acknowledged my performance."
Director and producer
In addition to being an actress, Pilgaonkar is also a director and a producer of short films. In 2012, she went to Harvard University for summer school, which led her to work on her own short films. In an interview with Mumbai Mirror, she said, "Once I felt confident, I directed Painted Signal, a short film, and Panchgavya", a documentary which she co-directed with Hana Kitasei. It examines the plight of cows as they wander around Bikaner in Rajasthan. She also co-directed and edited the short film Dresswala with Siddharth Joglekar, which was an official selection at the 2012 Mumbai Film Festival. Both Painted Signal and Dresswala received average responses from critics and were screened at international film festivals.
|Denotes films / dramas that are not yet released|
|2015||Stupid Cupid||Ishanvi||Reshu Nath|
|2018||13 Mussoorie||Aditi Bisht||Web series, aired on Viu|
|2018||Mirzapur||Sweety||Karan Anshuman, Gurmmeet Singh and Mihir Desai||Web series, aired on Amazon Prime Video|
|2019||Beecham House||Chanchal||Gurinder Chaddha|
|2020||The Gone Game||Suhani Gujral||Nikhil Bhat||Voot Miniseries|
|2020||Crackdown||Divya Shirodkar||Apoorva Lakhia||Voot|
|1996||Freedom Of Love||Karan Shetty||10-minute English language play|||
|2014||Internal Affairs||Rhea||Adhaar Khurana||English language play|||
|2014||Common People||Maya||Akarsh Khurana||English language play|||
|2016||Bombay Dying||Akarsh Khurana||English language play|||
|2013||Ekulti Ek||Swara||Maharashtra State Government Award for Best Debut Actress|
|2015||Un plus une||Ayanna||Screened at 2015 Toronto International Film Festival|
|2017||Jai Mata Di||Anu||Short film|
|2019||House Arrest||Saira||Netflix film|
|2020||Bhangra Paa Le||Nimmo|
|2021||Kaadan||Arundhati||Trilingual film (Hindi, Tamil, and Telugu)|
As director and producer
|2012||The Painted Signal||Short film|||
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- "ALMOST FAMOUS". Mumbai Mirror. 8 March 2015. Retrieved 8 May 2016.
- "Making an impact". The Hindu. 7 May 2016. Retrieved 1 June 2016.
- "Reaction to my performance in 'Fan' overwhelming: Shriya Pilgaonkar". The Indian Express. 18 April 2016. Retrieved 11 May 2016.
- "'It is more difficult to make an impact in a short role'". The Hindu. 3 May 2016. Retrieved 8 May 2016.
- "Sachin Pilgaonkar's daughter to debut in dad's directorial". Zee News. 1 May 2013. Retrieved 12 May 2016.
- "Shriya bags Most Promising Newcomer award". The Times of India. 21 January 2014. Retrieved 8 May 2016.
- "Winners at the 51st Maharashtra State Awards". The Times of India. Retrieved 8 May 2016.
- "Ekulti Ek Movie Review". The Times of India. 24 May 2013. Retrieved 11 May 2016.
- "WATCH OUT FOR SHRIYA PILGAONKAR". Verve. 14 April 2016. Retrieved 14 May 2016.
- "Sachin Pilgaonkar's daughter to make her Bollywood debut in SRK's Fan?". India Today. 2 March 2015. Retrieved 11 May 2016.
- "Shriya Pilgaonkar in Shah Rukh Khan's 'Fan'". The Indian Express. 13 March 2015. Retrieved 8 May 2016.
- "Sinners and superstars". Live Mint. 25 April 2015. Retrieved 22 May 2016.
- Ashwin, K. "14th Mumbai FIlm Festival Supports Local Talent". IndianShowBiz.com. IndianShowBiz.com. Retrieved 12 August 2016.
- "Meet Shriya Pilgaonkar, the Girl Who Made Her Debut in 'Fan' Opposite Shah Rukh Khan". News18. 20 April 2016. Retrieved 22 May 2016.
- "Shriya Pilgaonkar on bagging Haathi Mere Saathi: Its subject is something I feel strongly about". The Indian Express. 14 January 2019. Retrieved 14 January 2019.