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»Actor Celebrities Celebrity Details
PREITY ZINTA
Date of Birth 31-01-1975
Nationality Indian
Twitter Id https://twitter.com/realpreityzinta/
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Sunsign Aquarius
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Preity Zinta (pronounced ['pri?t?i 'z???a?]; born 31 January 1975) is an Indian film actress. She has appeared in Hindi films of Bollywood, as well as Telugu, Punjabi and English language films. After graduating with a degree in criminal psychology, Zinta made her acting debut in Dil Se.. in 1998 followed by a role in Soldier the same year. These performances earned her a Filmfare Award for Best Female Debut, and she was later recognised for her role as a teenage single mother in Kya Kehna (2000). She subsequently played a variety of character types; her film roles along with her screen persona contributed to a change in the concept of a Hindi film heroine.Zinta received a Filmfare Award for Best Actress in 2003 for her performance in the drama Kal Ho Naa Ho. She went on to play the lead female role in two consecutive annual top-grossing films in India: the science fiction film Koi... Mil Gaya (2003), her biggest commercial success, and the star-crossed romance Veer-Zaara (2004), which earned her critical acclaim. She was later noted for her portrayal of independent, modern Indian women in Salaam Namaste (2005) and Kabhi Alvida Naa Kehna (2006), top-grossing productions in overseas markets.These accomplishments have established her as a leading actress of Hindi cinema Her first international film role was in the Canadian film Heaven on Earth, for which she was awarded the Silver Hugo Award for Best Actress at the 2008 Chicago International Film Festival.In addition to movie acting, Zinta has written a series of columns for BBC News Online South Asia, is a social activist, a television presenter, and a regular stage performer. She is the founder of the production company PZNZ Media and, along with ex-boyfriend Ness Wadia, a co-owner of the Indian Premier League cricket team Kings XI Punjab. She is known in the Indian media for publicly speaking her mind and openly expressing her opinions, and consequently has sparked the occasional controversy.These controversies include her being the only witness not to retract in court her earlier statements against the Indian mafia during the 2003 Bharat Shah case, for which she was awarded the Godfrey Phillips National Bravery

Early life and background

Zinta was born into a family from Rohru in Shimla district, Himachal Pradesh. Her father, Durganand Zinta, was an officer in the Indian Army. He died in a car accident when she was 13 years old; the accident also involved her mother, Nilprabha, who was severely injured and consequently remained bedridden for two years. Zinta called the tragic accident and her father's death a significant turning point in her life, which forced her to mature rapidly. She has two brothers; Deepankar and Manish, a year older and a year younger respectively. Deepankar is a commissioned officer in the Indian Army, while Manish lives in California.Zinta, who describes herself as a tomboy as a child, has emphasised her father's military background as having a lasting impression on how family life was conducted. He asserted the importance of discipline and punctuality to the children. She studied at the Convent of Jesus and Mary boarding school in Shimla. Although she confesses to loneliness in the boarding school, she noted that it was compensated by her finding a "... perfect set of friends" there. As a student, she developed a love for literature, particularly the works of William Shakespeare and poetry. According to Zinta, she enjoyed schoolwork and received good grades; in her free time she played sports, especially basketball.Upon graduating from the boarding school at age 18, Zinta enrolled at St Bede's College in Shimla. She graduated college with an English honours degree, and then started a graduate programme in psychology. She earned a postgraduate degree in criminal psychology, but later took up modelling. Zinta's first television commercial was for Perk chocolates, the result of a chance meeting with a director at a friend's birthday party in 1996. The director persuaded Zinta to audition for the spot, and she was selected. Afterwards, she appeared in other catalogues and commercials, including one for the soap Liril.


Acting career
Early work (1997–99)

In 1997, Zinta met film-maker Shekhar Kapur when she accompanied a friend to an audition, and was asked if she would audition too. Upon seeing her audition, Kapur insisted that she become an actress. She was originally scheduled to make her screen debut in Kapur's Tara Rum Pum Pum opposite Hrithik Roshan, but the filming was cancelled. Kapur later recommended her for director Mani Ratnam's movie Dil Se... Zinta often recalls that when she joined the film industry, her friends teased her that she would typically "wear white saris and dance in the rain", thereby motivating her to play different parts.Zinta commenced shooting for Kundan Shah's Kya Kehna, whose release was delayed until 2000. The delay of another film, Soldier, meant that her first release was Dil Se.. (1998) opposite Shahrukh Khan and Manisha Koirala. She was introduced as Preeti Nair, a middle-class Delhi girl and Khan's fiancée. The film was considered an unusual launch for a newcomer, as her role called for only 20 minutes of screen time. However, she was eventually noticed for her role, particularly for the forthright character she played.Her scene with Khan, in which she asked him, "Are you a virgin?", became well-known, and her portrayal earned her a nomination for the Filmfare Award for Best Supporting Actress.She played her first leading role in the action-drama Soldier (1998), a commercial hit of the year.She won the Filmfare Award for Best Female Debut for her performance in both Dil Se.. and Soldier.Zinta next acted in two Telugu films, Premante Idera (1998), opposite Venkatesh; and Raja Kumarudu (1999), opposite Mahesh Babu. She followed with the leading role in the thriller Sangharsh, alongside Akshay Kumar. The film, based on The Silence of the Lambs (1991),was directed by Tanuja Chandra and written by Mahesh Bhatt. Zinta portrayed the character of Reet Oberoi, a CBI officer who falls in love with a captured killer played by Kumar. The film was not a box-office success, although Zinta's performance was appreciated by critics.


Other work


In 2004, Zinta joined a group of South Asian commentators for BBC News Online. She expressed joy at participating in the project, saying, "I am pretty outspoken and have my own view on every subject. So it will be a good platform for me to air my views."Her first column, "The changing face of Bollywood", published in January 2004,discussed the evolution of Bollywood in the past decade. The column became one of the site's ten most read stories of the day. In her second column, "Odds stacked against Indian women", Zinta analysed the eve teasing phenomenon in India, and criticised those who practice it. She wrote, "Incidences like these take away a woman's dignity, her space and her freedom ... why the state is so helpless in protecting the women. Why should women feel unsafe in a country which had an internationally revered woman prime minister?" The column caught the attention of readers worldwide, and she received thousands of e-mails about it. It was applauded particularly by women for its stand against abuse of Indian women. Her third column, "The darkness that all actors fear", was a more personal column and dealt with her stardom, fans, insecurity and fears as an actor. Her fourth and final column, titled "Facing death in Sri Lanka and Thailand", described her two near-death experiences in late 2004.


Ownership of IPL cricket team

Along with Ness Wadia and others, Zinta acquired ownership rights in 2008 for the Mohali-based Twenty20 cricket team of the Indian Premier League (IPL).The group paid $76 million to acquire the franchise, and had since named the team Kings XI Punjab.Until 2009, Zinta was the only woman to own an IPL team, and was the league's youngest owner. She has been involved with launching ticket sales and promoting the team. She said, "My involvement with the team is total. I am extremely passionate about our team and I do believe that I am the team's good luck factor, so I want to be there for everything."


Personal life

Zinta used to visit her native town Shimla when not busy in shooting. In 2006, she moved into her own home in Mumbai. She does not identify with any particular religion. In an interview with The Times of India, she comments, "I believe in good deeds, in karma, I don't believe in going to temples. For me, religion is very personal. It's all about having faith ... We have heard and read that all religions are equal. Now I am increasingly believing in this." She narrowly escaped death twice in late 2004: first after an explosion at a Temptation concert in Colombo, Sri Lanka; and second during the Indian Ocean earthquake.Zinta has been the subject of several controversies. In 2003, as a witness in the Bharat Shah case, she testified against the Indian mafia. Bharat Shah, the financer of one of her movies, Chori Chori Chupke Chupke, was arrested in 2000 for having connections with Chhota Shakeel, a Mumbai underworld boss. Unlike several of her colleagues, Zinta repeated in court her earlier statement that she had received extortion threats from the mafia during the shooting of the film.After her testimony, she was given witness protection and was forced to stay out of the public eye for two months.Thirteen other witnesses before her, including celebrities Salman Khan and Shahrukh Khan, were witnesses in the case but later retracted their earlier statements. Zinta was the only witness who did not become hostile to the prosecution the nation responded positively to her actions.Consequently, she was the first recipient of Godfrey's Mind of Steel Award at the annual Red and White Bravery Awards, given to her for the "courageous act" of standing against the Mumbai Underworld. On receiving the award, she said, "To be brave is not to be fearless. It is when you fear and you get over it, then you can be called brave. I am human. It is not that I fear nothing. But getting over a fear is a continuous process and I have been successful so far." Since 2006, Zinta has been the brand ambassador for the Godfrey Phillips Bravery awards.

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