Sayani Gupta rose to prominence with the critically acclaimed movie Margarita with a Straw
(2015). After being lauded for her portrayal of Khanum, a gay activist, in the movie, she went on to appear alongside Shah Rukh Khan
as his secretary, in the psychological action thriller Fan (2016).
Born to Maitreyi and Kamal Gupta in Kolkata, India, Sayani shifted to New Delhi for her college and graduated from Lady Shri Ram College, Delhi University. While in college, Sayani was a part of the dance, drama, debating and music societies. Her love for theater led to her active participation in plays and she started frequently performing with celebrated theater veterans such as MK Raina. However, since, a career in theater isn`t lucrative initially, Sayani decided to take up a job with an infrastructure research firm called Indian Infrastructure Pvt. Ltd. Post working there for one year, Sayani realized that her true calling lies in the world of cinema. She enrolled herself at the prestigious Film and Television Institute of India, Pune, where she studied acting for three years.
Sayani Gupta made her big screen debut with 2012`s Hindi movie Second Marriage Dot Com
. Success, however, came to her with her second film Margarita with a Straw. Directed by Shonali Bose, the movie starred Kalki Koechlin
, as a teenager with cerebral palsy and Sayani Gupta, as a Pakistani-Bangladeshi blind girl, who is a gay activist. The film opened to rave reviews, with praises pouring in for both the actress. Sayani then did a cameo in Leena Yadav
`s drama film Parched (2015), which featured Tannishtha Chatterjee
, Radhika Apte
, and Surveen Chawla
in important roles.
In 2016, Sayani bagged her first big banner film Fan
, starring the Badshaah of Bollywood, Shah Rukh Khan
. Directed by Maneesh Sharma
, the film was averagely received by the audiences and critics alike. The same year, she appeared in debutant director Nitya Mehra`s romantic drama movie Baar Baar Dekho
, starring Katrina Kaif
and Siddharth Malhotra
in the lead roles. Her 2017 releases include the satirical black-comedy drama Jolly LLB 2
and romantic comedy Jagga Jasoos
. Her 2019 release includes Article 15
and Posham Pa
. Her other releases include Axone (2020) and Pagglait
Under the mentorship of Atul Kumar, Sayani has acted in several plays like Trivial Disasters and Noises Off. A light-hearted comedy, Trivial Disasters, features an ensemble of Bollywood actors like Kalki Koechlin
, Richa Chadda, Cyrus Sahukar
and Purab Kohli
, along with Sayani.