Kangana Ranaut’s life seems like a film script – a young girl comes to Mumbai to become an actress without any help from family and knowing nobody in the alien land, lands a movie, becomes an actress, some more movies follow and soon becomes one of the top actresses in the industry.
But it’s still far from a script. It has many struggles, many rejections and many heartbreaks. Kangana Ranaut, born in a small town in Himachal Pradesh, moved to Delhi at 16 to complete her studies but soon got enamoured by the showbiz life. Soon she started modelling and then joined a theatre group to learn acting when somebody told her that acting pays more.
Ranaut then packed her bags and moved to Mumbai and slept on the pavements for days. She even claims she often ate only bread as she didn’t have money. It was in 2004 when Aditya Pancholi saw her on the street on a rainy day. Pancholi, who is a well-known womaniser, took her home and became her manager and promised to help her launch her career. The couple moved into a flat together and she often accompanied him to various parties and events.
In 2006 she made her film debut with Gangster for which she won the Filmfare Award for Best Female Debut. At this time, even though her career was rising, her personal life was far from good. Her older sister suffered an acid attack. Kangana herself was a victim of abuse by Aditya Pancholi. In 2007 she filed an FIR against him for physically assaulting her under the influence of alcohol while he alleged she had cheated on him.
Still struggling to create a buzz in B-town, she fell in love with Adhyayan Suman, the son of veteran actor Shekhar Suman. But the affair didn’t last long as Shekhar was against it. In 2008 Kangana played the role of Shonali Gujral, an alcoholic supermodel in Madhur Bhandarkar’s Fashion. Upon release the film was a commercial as well as critical hit. Kangana bagged the National Film Award for Best Supporting Actress.
With scripts pouring in and offers from all directions, Kangana had suddenly the new it girl. The small town girl was now in every gossip columns. She starred in a number of films. Often being laughed at and bullied for her poor English, Kangana hired a tutor for herself and corrected her English.
In the last few years the actress has given blockbuster hits like Tanu Weds Manu, Queen, and Tanu Weds Manu Returns. She won the National Film Award for Best Actress for the 2014-hit Queen.
Once a struggling actress, she is now amongst the highest paid actresses in the country. With no godfathers or support system, she has established herself as an inspiration to the ones trying their luck in B-town.
On her 29th birthday today, here’s wishing her loads of success and happiness.