Finding your feet in Bollywood is no mean task if you aren’t blessed with a godfather or family connections.
Nevertheless, there are quite a few celebrities who have made it big and on their own. Sheer hard work and perseverance have helped them write their success stories.
Let us look at the most popular Bollywood stars who have earned it the hard way and have mostly themselves to thank for.
His fine acting skills have left all of us astounded. Another good-looking actor from a theater background who graduated from FTI and shot to fame with his mesmerizing screen presence in ‘Shahid’. He later starred as the leading man in the hit film Queen.
John Abraham began his showbiz career with a music video “Surma” by Jazzy B. His big break came with winning a popular Indian modelling contest in 1999. He also appeared in many commercials and music videos for singers including Pankaj Udhas, Hans Raj Hans, etc.
He made his acting debut in “Jism” in 2003.
A typical Delhi boy, who started his career as a model later assisted Karan Johar. Smart move Sid! He shot to fame overnight with Karan Johar’s ‘Student Of The Year’. He just doesn’t have talent but luck is something that really favored Siddharth.
Talk about versatile and natural acting, Boman Irani is the first person I can think of in Bollywood. Ask him to do any role and he would just do it with absolute ease. After he got done with hsi degree in Polytechnic, Boman Irani worked as a waiter at the Taj . He went on to run a bakery with his mother and then took up a career in photography till he finally hit the big bucks as a brilliant comic actor.
Do we ever manage to find such good looking men doing theater plays? Well, that’s a rare scenario, isn’t it? But surprisingly, Randeep Hooda who got his degree from Melbourne and went on to work in marketing for an airline switched to modelling and doing some theater work. His debut was one of Mira Nair’s finest works, Monsoon Wedding and then later on ‘Once Upon a Time in Mumbaai’ made him a star eventually.
Now who doesn’t know about this man who has not just inspired many of us, but has proved himself in the best possible way in Bollywood. Born in a small town of Muzaffarnagar district in Uttar Pradesh from a Muslim family, where his late father was a farmer, Siddiqui grew up amongst nine siblings, seven brothers and two sisters. Worked as a chemist in his city before moving to Delhi and then to Mumbai where he lived and struggled way too much, till he finally won critical acclaim for his preformances in films like ‘Black Friday’ and ‘Patang’.
Nawazuddin made his Bollywood debut in 1999, with a small role in the Aamir Khan-starrer “Sarfarosh”. He did several small roles, but was largely undiscovered until Anurag Kashyap’s “Black Friday” happened in 2004.
There was a time in the early 2000s when he was mostly out of work and shared a flat with four others.
With his films having traveled around the world today — from the local festivals to the Cannes — he is a recognized face in India and globally.
Daughter of the famous Badminton player Prakash Padukone, this Bangalorean bombshell has won many hearts. With the genes that she carries, Deepika Padukone went to playing Badminton at a National Level, before she stepped into modeling. In 2008, Maybelline made her its new international cover face. Subsequently, she won the ‘Model of the Year’ at the Kingfisher Fashion Awards.
Deepika made her Bollywood debut in Farah Khan’s “Om Shanti Om” (2007) opposite Shahrukh Khan and the rest as they say is history!
The small-town girl from Himachal Pradesh has indeed come a long way from her first Bollywood film in 2006 to becoming one of the highest-paid actresses in the industry today.
All this, without a godfather or familiar connections in the industry!
Looks like an army background, is a boon for these Bollywood stars. Anushka Sharma hails from the small town of Ayodhya who later moved to Bangalore.
Anushka once said in an interview that she wanted to make it big in the modelling world and had no aspiration for films. She was picked by fashion designer Wendell Rodricks as a model for Lakme Fashion Week in 2007. Since then, there has been no looking back for this young, bright actress.
Anushka made her acting debut in Yash Raj Films’ “Rab Ne Bana Di Jodi” opposite Shahrukh Khan in 2008.
Another army kid, who hails from Amritsar later moving to Delhi & Mumbai. He waited tables in Bangkok before he came to Mumbai to become an actor. Akshay Kumar made his debut in Bollywood with a small role in Mahesh Bhatt’s “Aaj” (1987).
He made his presence felt as a lead in the 1991 film “Saugandh”.
Miss World. Fashionista. And an actress of merit.
She started her career as a successful model, winning the Miss World title in 2000. Three years later, she made her debut in Bollywood.
One of the most successful Bollywood actresses today, Priyanka Chopra has now taken the world by storm and is on a roll! After making it to TIME magazine’s ‘100 Most Influential People’ list in April, Priyanka was recently named among ‘World’s Top 10 Millennial Leaders’ by US News.
The diva has also done some grand Hollywood projects.
Shah Rukh Khan
The actor who tops the struggle and is an inspiration of many is our very own King Khan. To make it as big as him in the brutal world of tinsel town, not only do you need luck but also talent, confidence and skill. His father was an Indian independence activist based out of Peshawar, and as we know that he hailed from a humble family background, his debut was a TV show called ‘Fauji’.
The Delhi born-and-bred actor, who trained under a city theater group, came to Mumbai in the late eighties. He had traveled without a ticket back then.
After working in TV shows, Shah Rukh made his Bollywood debut with “Deewana” in 1992. Within the next three years, he gave Bollywood one of its most iconic films “Dilwale Dulhaniya Le Jayenge” and soon earned the title of King Khan.
Two and a half decades on, he remains the undisputed king of Bollywood.