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Ileana D`Cruz
Also known as: Illu
Actor • Special Appearances
Born: November 1, 1987 in Pune, Maharashtra, India
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About
With a Filmfare Award for Best Female Debut - South in 2006 for her work in Devadasu to her credit, Ileana D`Cruz is one of Telugu cinema`s leading actresses, who is also actively associated with Bollywood. The model-turned-actress made her Bollywood debut alongside Ranbir Kapoor and Priyanka Chopra in Anurag Basu`s critically acclaimed Barfi! in 2012, which won her immense appreciation and several accolades.

EARLY LIFE
Born in Pune, India to Ronaldo Leo, a lawyer, and a Samira, a homemaker, Ileana has three siblings - older sister Farrah, younger brother Rhys and youngest sister Eileen. After her family and she moved to Goa when she was 10 years old, Ileana completed her schooling in Goa and graduated from Bombay. She was noticed by the manager of the hotel her mother used to work for when she was in her early teens and pursued her mother to get Ileana into modeling. He also introduced her to model and grooming expert Marc Robinson, who set up her first portfolio shoot when Ileana was 16.

After her second portfolio shoot, Ileana began to grab the attention of ad filmmakers and she landed three advertisements for brands like Electrolux, Emami Talc, and Fair & Lovely. The ad for Fair & Lovely was shot by ace Bollywood director Rakesh Roshan, who helped her gain a lot more exposure, opening her doors to feature films.

PERSONAL LIFE
Ileana D`Cruz has been in a relationship with Australian photographer Andrew Kneebone since about 2012. While the two have been living-in together for quite some time, no marriage announcements have been made.

DEBUT & INITIAL YEARS
She made her silver screen debut with the Telugu film Devadasu in 2006. Directed by Y.V.S Chowdary, the movie went on to be a super hit and Ileana received a Filmfare Award for Best Female Debutant South. The same year, she had four other releases - Pokiri, Kedi, Khatarnak, and Rakhi. Pokiri, which featured her opposite Mahesh Babu, went on to become a blockbuster hit, catapulting Ileana into instant stardom and making her one of the leading ladies in the South. With Kedi, she, along with Tamannaah Bhatia, marked her Tamil film debut opposite Ravi Krishna. The movie opened to positive reviews and was declared a commercial success.

BREAKTHROUGH & BEYOND
Following the overwhelming response that she received in her debut year, Ileana cemented her position in the Telugu film industry and appeared in a string of commercially successful movies. Her performance in Trivikram Srinivas` 2008 action comedy Jalsa was appreciated by the audience and the critics alike and she received a Filmfare Award South nomination for Best Actress (Telugu). She was then cast opposite Ravi Teja in the action comedy Kick, which was remade in Tamil, Hindi, and Kannada as Thillalangadi, Kick, and Super Ranga respectively.

In 2012, she featured alongside an impressive ensemble cast in the coming-of-age Tamil movie Nanban, which released around Pongal in 925 screens across the world. It had one of the highest numbers of shows for a Tamil movie at that time and was also the first movie to release with French subtitles in France. It was very well-received by the critics and was also declared a box-office success. Reuniting with Trivikram Srinivas for the second time, Ileana was cast alongside Allu Arjun in the action thriller Julayi, which like her previous release was a runaway hit, releasing on 1600 screens across the globe.

The year 2012 is considered to be a turning point in Ileana`s career not only for the commercially successful movies that she was a part of down South but also because it marked her Bollywood debut with Anurag Basu`s romantic comedy-drama Barfi!. She was roped in to play the role of narrator and portray the character of Shruti Ghosh, a girl who leaves her true love for material comforts. The movie opened highly positive reviews from critics and was very well-received by the audience. One of Bollywood`s highest-grossing movies of 2012, Barfi! was also India`s official entry for the Best Foreign Language Film at the 85th Academy Awards.

After her Bollywood debut, she featured in a string of Hindi movies such as Phata Poster Nikhla Hero, Main Tera Hero, and Happy Ending.

RECENT PROJECTS
In 2016, she played the role of Cynthia Pavri in the period thriller Rustom, which is based on the real-life story of Naval Officer K. M. Nanavati. In her next Bollywood outing, she was cast alongside Arjun Kapoor, Athiya Shetty, and Anil Kapoor in the romantic comedy Mubarakan, which released across 2350 screens in India and was appreciated by the critics and audience alike. Set in the emergency era of 1975-77, Ileana`s next venture Baadshaho, a period heist action thriller, featured her opposite Ajay Devgn and Emraan Hashmi. Ileana`s first project of 2018 saw her reuniting with Ajay Devgn in the period crime drama Raid, which is based on the biggest IT raid that was conducted by the Indian Revenue Services in the 1980s. Her other releases include Amar Akbar Anthony (2018) and Pagalpanti (2019). Her 2021 releases include The Big Bull and Unfair and Lovely.
Peers & More
Varun Dhawan
Actor
Nargis Fakhri
Actor
Kriti Sanon
Actor
Jacqueline Fernandez
Actor
Family
Samira D'Cruz
Mother
Ronaldo D'Cruz
Father
Eileen D'Cruz
Sister
Farrah D'Cruz
Sister
Rhys D'Cruz
Brother
Popular Movies
View All
The Big Bull
Pagalpanti
Amar Akbar Anthony (Telugu)
Ek tha Soldier
Raid
Baadshaho
Mubarakan
Rustom
Koduran
Sabse Bada Dilwala

Did You Know? (10)

  • In 2018, Ileana D`Cruz became the `most sensational celebrity` on the internet, replacing Kapil Sharma.
  • Ace filmmaker Rakesh Roshan bought Illeana to the showbiz after casting her in a few advertisements.
  • Illeana declined the offer opposite Salman Khan in Wanted (2009) as she was preparing for the exams.
  • Ileana was the first actress to get Rs 1 crore as remuneration in the South Indian Film Industry.
  • Despite being brought up in Goa and Mumbai, she struggled with dialects in her Hindi debut Barfi (2012).
  • Illeana is the recipient of the best debut actress award in both the Filmfare Awards- Bollywood and South.
  • Illeana is a born catholic and belongs from a Goan family.
  • In 2016, Ileana D`cruz came out and spoke about Body Dysmorphic Disorder, involving obsessive focus on a perceived flaw in appearance. She had been suffering from the mental disorder for over 10-12 years but had no idea she was suffering.
  • Ileana D`cruz wasn`t the first choice to play Shruti in Barfi!. Katrina Kaif was initially considered to play that role.
  • After making her acting debut in 2006, Ileana was set to make her Bollywood the following year, in 2007, with the movie Black Diamond opposite Shiney Ahuja. However, after shooting a schedule in South Africa, the movie was shelved due to lack of funds.
  • Personal Quotes (10)

  • "Acting is a career where you keep learning with every film you do."
  • "The only thing I`m committed to right now is bettering myself."
  • "Every chance you get, shine. They hate that."
  • "I have a lot of dignity and am my own woman who does not dance to anyone`s tunes."
  • "I enjoyed every experience that life offers."
  • "It makes it so much easier to work with people who you can implicitly trust."
  • "We rely on our partners, but if we`re not stable within, we crumble in our relationships, too."
  • "I`m just going to keep pushing and try and be the best version that I can be of me."
  • "Work is secondary - for me, what`s important is having a close-knit family and having someone you can call family."
  • "I feel being healthy is beautiful and being happy is beautiful. That's what I endorse."
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