Models who turned actors

Models who turned actors

Salman, Aishwarya, Juhi, Deepika, Katrina and Arjun, these are the few names that instantly strike us when it comes to celebs who were models prior their stint in Bollywood. But, there are many other surprising faces too. Their journey from modelling to films is indeed interesting too. Click through to find out about the actors who have walked the ramp before delivering dialogues in front of the camera.



Not many people know that superstar and nation’s heartthrob, Salman Khan wanted to be a writer just like his father Salim Khan in his initial days. However, he began his career as a model since he was blessed with good looks. It was after he saw success as a model that Salman decided to be an actor and signed his first movie, Biwi Ho Toh Aisi (1988), in a supporting role. After the smashing success of Maine Pyaar Kiya (1989), the actor never looked back.


AAdeOldShilpa started her modelling career in the year 1991 at the age of 16 for soft drink brand, Limca. Subsequently she got a major break opposite Shah Rukh Khan in 1993 in the movie, Baazigar even as her first signed film Gaata Rahe Mera Dil went unreleased. Since then there has been no looking back for the actress, entrepreneur.


AAdetw7Khan, who is one of the most popular and highest paid actors in Pakistan, took up modelling at the tender age of 13. Though he started off as the leading singer of Pakistani rock band, Entity Paradigm, he gradually took up acting and modelling. He has walked the ramp for leading fashion designers back home and has been the showstopper for Munib Nawaz in 2010, Umar Sayeed in 2012, and for Republic by Omar Farooq in 2015. After drawing a huge fan following in Pakistan, the actor is now ruling the hearts in India with the release of his debut Indian movie, Khoobsurat in 2014 opposite Sonam Kapoor.


Kriti started as a model, with Print Shoot for Reliance Trends being her first assignment. Later she was seen in several popular ads and even walked the ramp during Wills Lifestyle India Fashion Week 2010 for leading fashion designers. She made her acting debut in the year 2014 in a Telugu film, and subsequently debuted in Bollywood opposite Tiger Shroff in the movie, Heropanti.


Sidharth Malhotra dabbled in modelling at the age of 18 to earn quick pocket money and after pursuing the same for 4 years, decided to move on to the movie business. Though he auditioned for an Anubhav Sinha film, which later got shelved, he managed to find work as an assistant director to Karan Johar on his 2010 film ‘My Name Is Khan.’ Malhotra then made his acting debut in the year 2012, with Karan Johar’s, ‘Student of the Year’ alongside Varun Dhawan and Alia Bhatt.


A trained Kathak dancer, Chitrangada started her career as a model while she was living in delhi with her family. She endorsed brands like Alukka Jewellery and ICICI Bank, besides working in several music videos like Sunset Point by Gulzar and Abhijeet Bhattacharya. She made her acting debut with director Sudhir Mishra’s critically acclaimed movie, Hazaron Khwahishen Aisi in the year 2003.


AAdelIHAlso called the ‘Liril’ girl, Preity rose to prominence with her Liril commercial, while her first TV commercial was for Perk chocolates. However, acting happened after she was convinced by director, producer Shekhar Kapur in 1997 to audition for the movie he was planning to make. Zinta, who was initially slated to debut opposite Hrithik Roshan in Kapur’s movie, Tara Rum Pum Pum, finally hit made her big screen debut in Mani Ratnam’s ‘Dil Se.’


AAdeDVIAmrita began her career as a model and appeared in several commercials during her early days. Her big leap on the screen happened at the age of 17, when she starred in singer Alisha Chinoy’s music video, Woh Pyar Mera. She subsequently made her acting debut opposite Arya babbar in the movie, Ab Ke Baras in the year 2002, also winning Filmfare Best Female Debut Award.



Juhi started off her career as a model and was a reckoned face back in the days. She was crowned Miss India in the year 1984, following which she made her acting debut in the year 1986 in the movie, Sultanat. She, however, received much acclaim with the super success of her movie, Qayamat Se Qayamat Tak in the year 1988, opposite Aamir Khan.



Zeenat Aman won the Miss Asia Pacific 1970 title. Her most prominent ad campaign was the Pond’s 7 day to better complexion. She began her career in Bollywood by doing a small role in O.P. Ralhan’s Hulchul.


AAakLnd (1)Aishwarya Rai dropped out of college in the early 90s to pursue a career in modelling. She won the title of Miss World in 1994. Aishwarya made her acting debut with the 1997 Tamil film Iruvar. Her Bollywood debut was also in the same year opposite Bobby Deol in Aur Pyaar Ho Gaya.


AAakLn3Sushmita Sen made started off by winning the title of Femina Miss India when she was a teenager. In the year 1994, she brought India pride by winning the prestigious Miss Universe title. After her reign as Miss Universe, Sushmita decided to join Bollywood. She made her debut in 1996 in film Dastak.


AAakEzMKatrina Kaif has established her name in Bollywood as one of the most successful actresses at the box office. Katrina started her modelling career at a tender age. Kaif’s modelling work led to her discovery by London-based filmaker Kaizad Gustad. Soon, he offered Katrina a role in his film. Katrina made her Bollywood debut in 2003 with the film Boom.


AAakGdnLara Dutta was a renowned model. In 1995, she became the winner of the annual Gladrags Megamodel contest. In 2000, Lara went on to become the second Indian to receive the title of Miss Universe. She made her debut in Bollywood with the film Andaaz opoosite Akshay Kumar.


AAakDrOArjun Rampal was a famous supermodel before becoming an actor. He was proclaimed Society’s Face of the Year, 1994. Arjun Rampal made his Bollywood debut with Rajiv Rai’s Pyaar Ishq Aur Mohabbat in 2001.



Bollywood’s most sought after actresses and now Hollywood too, Priyanka Chopra aka Piggi Chops was a successful model before she became an actress. Priyanka won her Miss World title in 2000. She made her acting debut in Bollywood in the year 2003 in ‘The Hero: Love story of a Spy.


AAakzEeDeepika Padukone began her career as a successful model. She hit the international scene when Maybelline made her their new international cover face. At the fifth annual Kingfisher Fashion Awards, for Indian models and designers, she was awarded the title of Model of the Year. She was chosen for the Kingfisher Swimsuit Calendar for 2006. Deepika made her Bollywood debut in Farah Khan’s Om Shanti Om opposite Shah Rukh Khan and rest all as we say is history.



Dia Mirza started working as a Marketing executive for a media firm while studying in college. Simultaneously she started off modelling for TV and Print commercials. Dia won Miss Asia Pacific in the year 2000. After that she made her Bollywood debut in Rehnaa Hai Terre Dil Mein opposite R. Madhavan.



Dino Morea was a supermodel before Joining Bollywood. He got his first offer to join Bollywood while he was modelling for a fashion company. Dino apparently was dating Bipasha Basu at that time. He made his acting debut in Pyaar Mein Kabhi Kabhi opposite Rinke Khanna.



Bipasha Basu, started out as a supermodel before scorching the big screen with her sultry sensuality. She won the Ford Godrej Cinthol contest, and later on flown to New York by the Ford, where she had a successful modelling career at the age of 17. She made her Bollywood debut in Abbas Mustan’s Ajnabee.



Malaika Arora Khan was a successful model and VJ, though she has never appeared as a lead actress in any film, Malaika has done many cameos and dance numbers in many Hindi films. Her first item number was in the film Dil Se with Shah Rukh Khan and after that she did a guest appearance in Bichhoo opposite Bobby Deol.


AAakLahJacqueline Fernandez was the winner of the Miss Sri Lanka Universe pageant of 2006. While on a modelling assignment in India in 2009, Fernandez got an offer to join Hindi film industry. She made her Bollywood debut in Sujoy Ghosh’s Aladin opoosite Riteish Deshmukh.


AAakG0jJohn Abraham began his modelling career appearing in the music video ‘Surma’ by Jazzy B. In 1999, he won the Gladrags Manhunt contest. He also appeared in many commercials and music videos for singers including Pankaj Udhas, Hnas Raj Hans, etc. He made his acting debut in Jism in 2003.

Tagged under


New Delhi


Humidity 55%

Wind 9.66 km/h

  • 15 Sep 201538°C26°C
  • 16 Sep 201537°C26°C