Anushka Sharma is an Indian actress and film producer who has established herself as one of the most popular and highest-paid actresses in India. She made her debut opposite Bollywood superstar Shah Rukh Khan in the movie 'Rab Ne Bana Di Jodi'. She has since then worked with two other superstar Khans of Bollywood: opposite Amir Khan in 'PK' and Salman Khan in 'Sultan', both the films are among her highest grossing films. She has worked with several lead actors of Bollywood, appearing alongside Shahid Kapoor in 'Badmaash Company'; Ranveer Singh in 'Band Baaja Baaraat' and 'Ladies vs Ricky Bahl'; Akshay Kumar in 'Patiala House'; and Ranbir Kapoor in 'Bombay Velvet' and 'Ae Dil Hai Mushkil'. She has also produced the films 'NH10', 'Phillauri' and 'Pari' through her production company Clean Slate Films. She has designed her own line of clothing for women and has endorsement deals with several top brands. As a philanthropist, she supports gender equality and animal rights.
Anushka Sharma was born on May 1st, 1988, in Ayodhya, Uttar Pradesh, to Colonel Ajay Kumar Sharma, an army officer, and Ashima Sharma, a homemaker. She has an elder brother named Karnesh Sharma who earlier served in the Merchant Navy and is now a film producer.
She grew up in Bangalore where she attended the Army School before receiving a degree in arts from Mount Carmel College. She initially wanted to pursue a career in modeling or journalism, and moved to Mumbai after completing her education to seek modeling opportunities.
Anushka Sharma began her career as a model. She was signed to Elite Model Management, where she was groomed by the style consultant Prasad Bidapa. At the same time, she took acting classes and auditioned for roles. She made her runway debut at the Lakme Fashion Week for designer Wendell Rodricks's Les Vamps Show and was subsequently selected as his finale model at the Spring Summer 2007 Collection.
By the time she gave her screen test at the Yash Raj Films studio, she had already done campaigns for brands like Silk & Shine, Whisper, Nathella Jewelry and Fiat Palio. She refused to do an impromptu audition and prepared for a day instead, and bagged a three-film deal with the studio.
She debuted in the lead role of Tani Sahni, a young bride to a middle-aged man, portrayed by Shah Rukh Khan, in Aditya Chopra's romantic drama 'Rab Ne Bana Di Jodi' (2008). She was praised for her role and received nominations for the 'Filmfare Award' for 'Best Actress' and 'Best Female Debut'.
She next appeared as the leading lady in the crime-comedy 'Badmaash Company' (2010), alongside Shahid Kapoor, Vir Das and Meiyang Chang, which was received with mixed reviews. Later that year, she starred in her third movie with Yash Raj Films, 'Band Baaja Baaraat', against debutant Ranveer Singh, a role that earned her a second Filmfare nomination for 'Best Actress'.
She went on to appear opposite Akshay Kumar in the sports drama 'Patiala House' (2011) in which her energetic performance was praised by critics. The same year, she reunited with Ranveer Singh for the comedy-drama 'Ladies Vs Ricky Bahl', which was a moderate success at the box office despite receiving mixed reviews.
She appeared in a supporting role alongside Shah Rukh Khan and Katrina Kaif in Yash Chopra's last movie, 'Jab Tak Hai Jaan' (2012), for which she won the 'Filmfare Award for Best Supporting Actress'.
She played the lead role in Vishal Bhardwaj's political satire 'Matru Ki Bijlee Ka Mandola' (2013). The movie also starred Pankaj Kapur, Imran Khan and Shabana Azmi, and received mixed reviews from critics.
Rajkumar Hirani's religious satire 'PK' (2014), in which she portrayed television journalist Jagat 'Jaggu' Janini opposite Aamir Khan who played an alien, proved to be an enormous success in India and worldwide. Riding on the success of the film, she launched her own productions company, Clean Slate Films, which debuted with the release of the thriller 'NH10' (2015), in which she played the lead role.
She worked hard to portray the character of Rosie Noronha, a jazz singer, in Anurag Kashyap's highly anticipated period crime drama 'Bombay Velvet' (2015), but the film failed to impress critics. She played the supporting role of a dancer aboard a cruise ship in Zoya Akhtar's ensemble comedy-drama 'Dil Dhadakne Do' also starring Anil Kapoor, Shefali Shah, Priyanka Chopra and Ranveer Singh.
She next teamed up with Salman Khan for another movie for Yash Raj Films, the romantic sports drama 'Sultan' (2016), in which she played the role of wrestler Aarfa Hussain. She trained for six weeks for the role and learned to speak Haryanvi, but critics were unconvinced with her physique, even though found her performance "spirited".
In 2016, she aslo appeared alongside Ranbir Kapoor and Aishwarya Rai in Karan Johar's blockbuster romantic drama 'Ae Dil Hai Mushkil', portraying the female lead Alizeh Khan, a free-spirited girl stuck in a loveless relationship. She earned a Filmfare Best Actress nomination for her role, and with two successful films under her belt, was hailed as the most successful Bollywood actress of the year.
She appeared in two films in 2017: the fantasy comedy 'Phillauri' which she also produced, and Imtiaz Ali's romance 'Jab Harry Met Sejal' opposite Shah Rukh Khan. Both the films failed to make an impact at the box office.
She next produced and starred in the supernatural horror film 'Pari' (2018), which was a critical failure, but she was praised for her risk-taking attitude and willingness to explore different paths. She is slated to appear in the Shah Rukh Khan-starrer 'Zero', 'Sui Dhaaga' opposite Varun Dhawan, and Rajkumar Hirani's Sanjay Dutt biopic 'Sanju', starring Ranbir Kapoor.