Katrina Kaif, real name Katrina Turquotte is a British Indian actress and former model who appears in Indian films, mainly in the Hindi-language film industry, also known as Bollywood. She has also appeared in Telugu and Malayalam films. She was voted the sexiest Asian woman in the world by Eastern Eye in the years 2008, 2009 and 2010. Katrina Kaif has been voted as the sexiest woman in the world yet again by the Fashion Magazine FHM. She has been honoured with this title for the fourth time. Being a British citizen, she works in India on an employment visa.
Kaif made her acting debut with Kaizad Gustad's box office bomb Boom (2003). Later, Kaif made appearances in moderately successful films such as Sarkar (2005) and Maine Pyaar Kyun Kiya (2005), for which she garnered recognition in the industry and outside the industry. In 2006, Kaif was largely appreciated for her role as Jia A. Yashvardhan in the film Humko Deewana Kar Gaye.
The successful phase in Kaif's career started in the year of 2007 with Vipul Shah's Namastey London becoming successful commercially. This was followed with successful films such as David Dhawan's Partner (2007), Anees Bazmee's Welcome (2007), Abbas-Mustan's Race (2008), Anees Bazmee's Singh Is Kinng (2008). She has since appeared in critically praised and commercially successful films like Kabir Khan's New York (2009), Rajkumar Santoshi's Ajab Prem Ki Ghazab Kahani (2009), Prakash Jha's political thriller Rajneeti (2010) and Zoya Akhtar's dramedy Zindagi Na Milegi Dobara (2011). In 2010, Kaif was nominated for her first Filmfare Best Actress Award for her portrayal of Maya, a loving wife and friend in New York, which was one of the highest grossing Bollywood films of 2009. She was nominated a second time in 2012, for her depiction of Dimple, a bubbly and vivacious girl in the highly successful Mere Brother Ki Dulhan. In addition to lead roles, Kaif has also garnered recognition for her item numbers such as "Zara Zara Touch Me" from Race (2008), "Sheila Ki Jawani" from Tees Maar Khan (2010) and "Chikni Chameli" from Agneepath (2012). Having done so, Kaif has thus established herself as a leading contemporary actress in Bollywood.
Early years and personal life
Kaif was born in Hong Kong, to an English mother, Susanna Turquotte, who is a British citizen. Her parents divorced when she was very young. Kaif once stated, "My dad, unfortunately, and not out of choice, has had no influence on our upbringing, on our religious or social or moral bearings." When she came to India, she changed her surname to Kaif, because it was Indian in origin and easier to pronounce. Furthermore, her first film Boom's producer Ayesha Shroff has maintained that the actress' original name is Katrina Turquotte.She also claims that they gave her the kashmiri father and the surname kaif after cricketer Mohammad Kaif as he was on top at that time.She adds that they also had thought her naming Katrina Kazi. Kaif has seven siblings; a brother and six sisters. From Hong Kong, she and her family moved to China, then to Japan. From there she went to France when she was 8, and thereafter lived for a few months at a time in Switzerland, Poland, Germany, Belgium, and other European countries. Then she moved with her family to Hawaii, and eventually to her mother's home country of England. Although it is often assumed that Kaif is from London, she lived there only for three years before finally moving to Mumbai.
Modeling and early film career (1998–2004)
Kaif began her modeling career at age fourteen; her first assignment was for a jewelry campaign. She continued modeling in London under a contract with the Models 1 Agency and did campaigns for houses such as La Senza and Arcadius, and even walked on the London Fashion Week.
Kaif's modeling work led to her discovery by London-based filmmaker Kaizad Gustad, who gave her a part in his film Boom (2003). The film, which starred Amitabh Bachchan and Gulshan Grover, failed to make an impact. She then moved to Mumbai and was offered a number of modeling assignments, but filmmakers were hesitant to cast Kaif due to her poor command of Hindi.
In 2005, Kaif made a cameo in Ram Gopal Verma's drama Sarkar, as Abhishek Bachchan's girlfriend. The same year, she landed her first major role in David Dhawan's adaptation of Cactus Flower, Maine Pyaar Kyun Kiya, where she was paired opposite Salman Khan. The film also featured Sushmita Sen, Arshad Warsi, Isha Koppikar and Sohail Khan in leading roles. Upon release, the film became a moderate success with Taran Adarsh, a prominent film critic, mentioning Kaif as a "complete revelation". The following year, she was paired opposite Akshay Kumar for the first time in Raj Kanwar's box-office flop Humko Deewana Kar Gaye. However, for her portrayal of Jia A. Yashvardhan, Adarsh wrote, "Taking giant strides as an actor, Katrina is, without doubt, the star of the show. It's her magnetic presence and dependable performance that you carry home once the show has ended."
In 2007, Kaif appeared in four films, all of which were successful at the box office. Her first release was Vipul Shah's romantic-comedy Namastey London. Kaif portrayed the character of a British Indian girl named Jasmeet "Jazz" Malhotra, alongside Rishi Kapoor, Akshay Kumar and Clive Standen. Upon its release, the film became a major hit, with Nikhat Kazmi, of the The Times Of India praising the chemistry between the leading couple. She next played a supporting role in Anil Sharma's melodrama Apne. Featuring Dharmendra, Sunny Deol, Bobby Deol, Kirron Kher and Shilpa Shetty, the film was a box-office hit. Her next release was David Dhawan's unofficial remake of Hitch, Partner, where she starred alongside Salman Khan, Govinda, and Lara Dutta. Her final film of 2007, Welcome, directed by Anees Bazmee and co-starring Akshay Kumar, Paresh Rawal and Anil Kapoor, was declared a blockbuster in India, despite negative reviews from critics.
Her first release of 2008 was Abbas-Mustan's action-thriller Race; she played Saif Ali Khan's secretary, Sophia, who is secretly in love with his hostile stepbrother (played by Akshay Khanna). The film also featured Anil Kapoor, Bipasha Basu and Sameera Reddy in leading roles. Despite its success, Kazmi wrote, "Katrina is too pale as the blousy secretary who comes into her own only when she gets seductive with a Touch me, kiss me tenor."
Kaif was next seen in Anees Bazmee's action comedy Singh Is Kinng, portraying Akshay Kumar's love interest and Ranvir Shorey's fiancée. After its release, the film was declared a blockbuster, making it Kaif's sixth consecutive success at the box office. The movie also emerged as the third highest grossing film of 2008. Kaif's final release of the year, Subhash Ghai's Yuvvraaj, was a commercial failure, but its script made its way into the Library of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences for artistic merit, original screenplay with a substance, and the film as a whole.
In 2009, she featured in Kabir Khan's terrorism drama New York, with John Abraham and Neil Nitin Mukesh. It was a critical and commercial success in both India and overseas. Kaif's performance was highly praised: Taran Adarsh wrote, "Katrina gives you the biggest surprise. Known for her glamour roles, Katrina proves that she can deliver if the director and writer offer her a role of substance. She's outstanding. In fact, people will see a new, different Katrina this time." For her performance, Kaif received her first Filmfare nomination in the Best Actress category. She next had a cameo in the star-studded action-thriller Blue, popularly known as India's first underwater thriller, with Akshay Kumar and Zayed Khan. However, it was declared a flop. In November 2009, she appeared along with Ranbir Kapoor, in Rajkumar Santoshi's blockbuster comedy Ajab Prem Ki Ghazab Kahani, as Jennifer Pinto. Critics mostly praised her fresh chemistry with Kapoor rather than her performance as a whole. Her final release that year was Priyadarshan's star-studded De Dana Dan with Akshay Kumar, Suniel Shetty, Paresh Rawal and Neha Dhupia. The film had a promising opening, although dropped in collections throughout the following days. Despite this, the film was a moderate commercial success, receiving an "above average" status at the domestic box office by Box Office India.
Kaif's first release of 2010 was Prakash Jha's political thriller Raajneeti, where she appeared opposite Ranbir Kapoor and Arjun Rampal. The film was a modern-day adaptation of The Mahabharata set against the political backdrop of Delhi. Nana Patekar, Manoj Bajpai and Shruti Seth also played starring roles. Upon release, the film performed extremely well at the box office, and earned Kaif favourable reviews for her portrayal of the dynamic Indu Sakseria. A sequel of Rajneeti is expected to show Katrina Kaif as the queen sized politician.However Ranbir Kapoor would not be a part of the sequel.
Her final release that year was Farah Khan's brainless comedy Tees Maar Khan with Akshay Kumar. Despite receiving unanimous negative reviews from critics and audiences alike, the film was a moderate success at the box office, receiving "Semi Hit" status by Box Office India. However, Kaif's item number Sheila Ki Jawani became a major chartbuster.
In 2011, she was seen alongside Hrithik Roshan, Farhan Akhtar, Abhay Deol and Kalki Koechlin in Zoya Akhtar's dramedy Zindagi Na Milegi Dobara, which emerged as a major critical and commercial success. Kaif was praised for her portrayal of a fun-loving diving instructor Laila. Taran Adarsh wrote, "Katrina is a revelation...the actress continues to surprise you with her performances in film after film." She next featured in Yash Raj Films' comedy Mere Brother Ki Dulhan opposite Imran Khan and Ali Zafar. The film was successful at the box office, and earned Kaif positive notice for her portrayal of vivacious punk-rock girl Dimple Dixit, with Rahul Gangwani saying "the film ultimately belongs to Katrina Kaif. She sparkles, sizzles and infuses energy into the film." Consequently, she received her second Filmfare nomination in the Best Actress category.
As of June 2012, Kaif is set to appear in three high-profile productions under the Yash Raj Films banner such as Kabir Khan's spy thriller Ek Tha Tiger opposite Salman Khan, Yash Chopra's Untitled Project alongside Shah Rukh Khan and Anushka Sharma and Vijay Krishna Acharya's adventure film Dhoom 3 alongside Aamir Khan, Abhishek Bachchan, Uday Chopra and Rimi Sen. Kaif is also expected to appear alongside actor Shahid Kapoor for the first time in Prabhu Deva's Namak. Katrina Kaif's to feature in Imtiaz Ali's film 22 Tango which is a remake of Korean film My Girlfriend is an Agent .
In the year 2002, Katrina Kaif was chosen as Coca-Cola's brand ambassador in Tamil Nadu along with Tamil leading actor Vijay. The Coca-Cola advertisement was popular in Tamil Nadu, with Katrina Kaif and Vijay dancing to a Tamil song called "Gullu Gullu". She has also worked for several skin products companies, particularly Veet, as well as several multi-national brands, such as Panasonic. Katrina is now the brand ambassador of the national airline of the United Arab Emirates – Etihad Airways.
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