Art & Entertainment

From Deepika Padukone To Esha Gupta, 10 Bollywood Actresses Who Made It From The Runway To Big Screen

From Aishwarya Rai Bachchan, and Priyanka Chopra to Deepika Padukone, have a look at the actresses who started as models and made it to the big screen.


Models-turned-actresses Photo: Instagram

Some of the finest actresses in Bollywood started their journey as a model. The runway served as a stepping stone for several actresses who made it big in the industry by gracefully transitioning from models. A-lister actresses like Aishwarya Rai Bachchan, and Priyanka Chopra to Deepika Padukone, were models before making it to the silver screen. 

Have a look at the actresses who started as models and made it to the big screen.

Deepika Padukone

Actress Deepika Padukone worked as a model before making her way to Bollywood. In 2004, at the age of 18, Deepika made the big decision of her life as she took fashion modelling as a full-time profession. In 2005, she made her runway debut and later won the 'Model of the Year' award at the Kingfisher Fashion Awards. The actress also appeared in many commercials. In 2006, she made her debut in Bollywood with 'Om Shanti Om' opposite Shah Rukh Khan. Today, she is one of the leading ladies of Bollywood. She has proved her mettle in films like 'Padmaavat', 'Bajirao Mastani', 'Piku', 'Chennai Express' and 'Chhapaak' among others. 


Anushka Sharma

Anushka Sharma started her journey as a model at the age of 15 and has come a long way with her sheer determination and hard work. Being an outsider, she not only carved a niche in the modelling industry but also in Bollywood. She has remained a model for some top brands. The actress made her Bollywood debut with Yash Raj's 'Rab Ne Bana Di Jodi' in 2008 opposite Shah Rukh Khan. Post that she appeared in films like 'PK', 'Band Baaja Baaraat', 'NH10', and 'Sultan' among others. 

Aishwarya Rai Bachchan

Needless to say, Aishwarya Rai Bachchan's transition from a model to a renowned Bollywood actress is laudable. She was crowned the Miss World in 1994. She is one of the most beautiful models in the world and also one of the best actresses Bollywood has. Aishwarya made her acting debut in Mani Ratnam's 1997 Tamil film 'Iruvar'. She has also acted in a few Hollywood projects as well. 


Priyanka Chopra

One of the finest actresses, Priyanka Chopra has cemented her position not only in Bollywood but also in Hollywood. She worked as a model before starting her journey in acting. She gained popularity after winning the Miss World title in 2000. PeeCee made her acting debut with the 2002 Tamil film 'Thamizhan'. She featured in 'The Hero: Love Story of a Spy' in a supporting role but 'Andaaz' was her first Hindi film where she played the leading lady. She never looked back and appeared in films like 'Don 2', 'Barfi', Dil Dhadakne Do', 'Dostana', 'Fashion', and 'Gunday' among others. 

Bipasha Basu

Bengali beauty, Bipasha Basu was a successful fashion model before she pursued her career in acting. She made her acting debut with the thriller 'Ajnabee' in 2001' and won the Filmfare Award for Best Female Debut.

Katrina Kaif 

Katrina Kaif started modelling when she was a teenager and later pursued a career as a fashion model. It was during a fashion show in London, that Indian filmmaker Kaizad Gustad saw her and cast her in the movie 'Boom' that released in 2003. Today, she is one of the biggest actresses in Bollywood. Katrina appeared in some big banner films like 'Ek Tha Tiger', 'Tiger Zinda Hai', 'Tiger 3', 'Bharat', 'and 'Thugs of Hindostan' among others. 

Lara Dutta 

Actress Lara Dutta started her career in modelling when she was just 16 years old. She won the annual Gladrags Megamodel India competition in 1995 and was later crowned Miss Intercontinental in 1997. In 2000, she was crowned Miss Universe. Lara made her Hindi film debut with 'Andaaz' in 2003. Later, she appeared in films like 'Bhagam Bhag', 'Partner', 'Housefull', and 'Don 2' among others. 


Sobhita Dhulipala

Sobhita Dhulipala had a flourishing career in modelling before making it to acting. She was crowned Miss Earth India. She is known for her work in 'Made in Heaven', 'Ghost Stories', 'Kurup' and 'Bard of Blood' among others. 

Esha Gupta

Actress Esha Gupta created waves in the modelling industry before establishing herself as a successful Bollywood actress. The diva was crowned Femina Miss India International in 2007 and represented India at Miss International in 2007. 'Jannat 2' was her Bollywood debut and then she acted in films like 'Raaz 3', 'Baadshaho', 'Murder 4' and Rustom' among others.

Diana Penty

Actress Diana Penty started her modelling career in 2005 when she was signed up by Elite Models India. She seamlessly transitioned into acting with her debut in 'Cocktail' which had Deepika Padukone and Saif Ali Khan as leads. Diana starred in films like 'Happy Bhag Jayegi" and 'Parmanu'. 


Newcomers in the modelling industry or Bollywood can surely take inspiration from these divas.