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Wednesday, 7 September 2011

Manisha Koirala




Manisha Koirala, born on August 16, 1970 in Kathmandu, Nepal, is an award-winning prominent Bollywood actress, UNFPA Goodwill Ambassador and social activist. She is also an accomplished Bharatnatyam and Manipuri dancer. Koirala, who made her acting debut in Bollywood with the film First Love Letter (1991), had her first commercial success with Subhash Ghai's Saudagar from the same year. She went on to be one of the most versatile actresses of her generation, working with some of the most prominent film directors of her times. Though most of her films have not done well at the box office but her niche as an actor remains harmless irrespective of box office collections. During her years in Bollywood, Koirala mostly ventured into more serious and realistic cinema, rather than commercial one. Today, she is considered to be one of the finest actresses in the Indian industry.

Early life

Manisha Koirala was born into the politically prominent Koirala family; Her grandfather Bishweshwar Prasad Koirala was the Prime Minister of Nepal during the late 50s-early 60s, as well as two of her great uncles, Girija Prasad Koirala and MP Koirala. She studied at New Delhi's Army Public School and Vasant Kanya Mahavidhyalaya (VKM) Varanasi. She lived with her grandmother in Varanasi during her studies. Her ambition was to be a doctor, but a modelling stint opened a career path into Bollywood.

Her brother is Siddharth Koirala is also an actor.

Recently she returned from New York after receiving a diploma in filmmaking. She also became a member of an independent filmmaker's society.

Career

Her first film was Pheri Bhetaula (We shall meet again), a Nepali movie released in early 1989. Her first Hindi movie was Subhash Ghai's Saudagar in 1991. The film proved to be a good beginning, as it was the biggest hit of the year. After that, she went on work with some of the most prominent film directors of Bollywood.

She went on to star in many critically and commercially successful films such as Vidhu Vinod Chopra's 1942: A Love Story (1994) and Mani Ratnam's Tamil film Bombay (1995). Her performance in the latter was critically appreciated and won her the Filmfare Best Performer Award. She was also seen in more commercial films. Her role as a reigning srar in Mansoor Khan's romantic musical Akele Hum Akele Tum (1995) opposite Aamir Khan gave her a Filmfare nomination for Best Actress.
1996 was her year with her films Agni Sakshi doing well at the box office and her highly acclaimed performance in Sanjay Leela Bhansali's directional debut Khamoshi: The Musical, where she played a daughter to deaf parents. She won her second successive Filmfare Best Performer Award and a Star Screen Award for Best Actress for her performance in Khamoshi.

One year later in 1997, she played the leading role alongside Kajol and Bobby Deol in the thriller Gupt: The Hidden Truth, which was one of the biggest hits of the year.She went to collaborate once again with Mani Ratnam, and starred in his award-winning film Dil Se (1998) opposite Shahrukh Khan. Her role received similar good reviews, and gave her various award nominations. Despite performing poorly at the box office in India, the film proved to be a hit overseas.

Since then, she has been part of several critically and commercially successful projects. She won favorable reviews for her role as a traffic accident victim in the averagely received Mann (1999), which also entered into the top five highest grossing films of the year; She was the leading actress in the moderately successful Kachche Dhaage (1999), and Rajkumar Santoshi's critically acclaimed Lajja (2001). Her performance as a rape victim who quests for justice in the film Grahan (2001) was also much appreciated.

In 2002, She starred opposite Ajay Devgan in Ram Gopal Verma's Company. The film was critically acclaimed, as well as Koirala's performance in it, and she won her third Filmfare Best Performer Award.

In 2003, she ventured into strong woman-oriented films such as Escape From Taliban which won her the BFJA Best Actress Award. She was also the main protagonist in the movie Market where she enacted a role of a prostitute, portraying a whole life story.

In 2004, she produced the small-budget caper-comedy Paisa Vasool in which she starred along with Sushmita Sen and was directed by Srinivas Bhashyam; this was probably the first ever chick-flick in Indian cinema in that it did not have a male lead nor a love story.

Overall, Koirala starred as the leading role in 6 high-budget, successful Tamil movies: Bombay (1994) co-starring Arvind Swamy, Indian (1996) co-starring Kamal Hassan, Mudhalvan (1999) co-starring Arjun, Aalavandhan (2001) co-starring Kamal Hassan, Baba (2002) co-starring Rajnikanth and Mumbai Express (2005) co-starring Kamal Hassan.

Since then, She has appeared in various unsuccessful films, some of them being well received, such as the drama thriller Tum - A Dangerous Obsession (2005) and the horror film Anjaane - The Unknown (2006). Her last release was Anwar in 2007. She is also set to star in Deepa Mehta's foreign film Exclusion.
Social Work
In September 1999, Koirala was appointed as a UNFPA Goodwill Ambassador. She is actively involved in social work, specifically working with organizations to promote women’s rights, prevention of violence against women, and also to prevent the human trafficking of Nepali girls for prostitution.

Controversies

In 2002, Manisha accused the director of the film Ek Chotisi Love Story Shashilal Nair of using Koirala's body double to shoot some love scenes in the film and portraying her in bad light by shooting obscene postures using another actress in her place, without Manisha's approval to do so. Koirala required from Nair to re-shoot these scenes because the double's body did not match her physique and required that these scenes be deleted from the film. Koirala had also claimed that Nair stipulated to re-shoot the scenes if she agrees to bear half the expenses.“ I always believed in Shashi. I did this film out of sheer goodwill. I had nothing to gain from it financially as I did the film for free. I also gave him all the dates immediately. It was his first chance to direct a film in four years. He has a family to support and I couldn't bear to see a friend in hardship. ”

Koirala decided to sued Nair and dragged him to court. She has moved the court against the filmmaker, and objected to the alleged nudity and obscene postures, saying she had not performed in these scenes and that Nair had made use of another actress for this. Koirala has pleaded that these scenes be deleted from the film. Finally, the court decided to stay the release of the film.

Another controversy occurred In February 2006, when a wake of protests by section of people following a media report claimed Koirala had named her pet dog after a revered Muslim figure, which caused to demonstrations against her. Koirala was provided police security to prevent any problem. In the following days, The accusations continued. However, Koirala denied the accusations and the Police said the actress had no pet at all.

Awards
Awards Won

* 1996, Filmfare Critics Award for Best Performance, Bombay
* 1997, Filmfare Critics Award for Best Performance, Khamoshi: TheMusical
* 1997, Star Screen Award Best Actress, Khamoshi: The Musical
* 2003, Filmfare Critics Award for Best Performance, Company
* 2004, Bengal Film Journalists' Association Awards, Best Actress, Escape From Taliban

Awards Nominated
* 1995, Filmfare Best Actress Award, 1942:A Love Story
* 1996, Filmfare Best Actress Award, Bombay
* 1996, Filmfare Best Actress Award, Akele Hum Akele Tum
* 1997, Filmfare Best Actress Award, Khamoshi: The Musical
* 1997, Filmfare Best Actress Award, Agni Sakshi
* 1999, Filmfare Best Actress Award, Dil Se

Filmography

Year Film Role Other notes
1989 Pheri Bhetaula Nepali film
1991 First Love Letter Radha
Saudagar Radha
1992 Yalgaar Meghna Kumar
1993 Insaaniyat Ke Devta Nisha
Anmol Anmol
Dhanwan Anjali Chopra
1994 Yun Hi Kabhi Pooja
1942: A Love Story Rajeshwari Pathak
Sangdil Sanam Sanam
1995 Bombay Shaila Bano Winner, Filmfare Critics Award for Best Performance; Tamil film
Anokha Andaz
Milan Priya
Criminal Shweta Kumar
Guddu Salina Gupta
Ram Shastra Anjali Sinha
Akele Hum Akele Tum Kiran Kumar
1996 Dushmani Sapna Oberoi
Agni Sakshi Shubhangi/Madhu
Yeh Majhdhaar Radha Rai
Khamoshi: The Musical Annie Winner, Filmfare Critics Award for Best Performance & Nominated, Filmfare Best Actress Award
Indian Ishwarya Tamil film
1997 Sanam Sanam
Loha Manisha Koirala
Gupt: The Hidden Truth Sheetal Choudhry
Dil Ke Jharokhe Mein Suman
1998 Yugpurush Sunita
Achanak Pooja
Dil Se Meghna
Maharaja Shaili Mathur
1999 Kachche Dhaage Rukhsana
Lal Baadshah Kiran (Life Insurance Agent)
Laawaris Anshu Mehra
Jaihind Sheetal
Mudhalvan Thenmozhi Tamil film
Kartoos Mini
Mann Priya Verma
Hindustan Ki Kasam Roshanaara
2000 Champion Sapna Khanna
Khauff Neha
Baaghi Rani
Raja Ko Rani Se Pyar Ho Gaya Manisha/Sapna Khanna
2001 Grahan Paro, Parvati Shastri
Chhupa Rustam Nisha
Lajja Vaidehi
Aalavandhan Sharmilee Tamil film
Moksha Ritika Sanyal
2002 Company Saroja Winner, Filmfare Critics Award for Best Performance
Jaani Dushman: Ek Anokhi Kahani Vasundhara/Divya
Ek Chotisi Love Story The Woman
Baba Chamundeeswari Tamil film
2003 Escape From Taliban Sushmita Bannerjee/Sayed Kamal
Ek Badi Si Love Story The Woman
Calcutta Mail Sanjana
Market Muskaan Bano/Kaalia
2004 Paisa Vasool Maria
Tum - A Dangerous Obsession Kamini
2005 Chaahat - Ek Nasha Mallika Arora
Mumbai Express Ahalya Tamil film
Taj Mahal: An Eternal Love Story Princess Jahan Ara
2006 Anjaane - The Unknown Shivani Malhotra
Darwaza Bandh Rakho Julie
2007 Anwar Anita Released
Dus Kahaniyaan Pre-production
God Tussi Great Ho Sheetal In production
Khela Post-production
2008 Exclusion In production

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