Biography

Prachi Desai (born 12 September 1988) is an Indian film and television actress. She has worked in Indian films like Rock On!!, Once Upon A Time In Mumbaai and Bol Bachchan that earned her both critic’s and commercial support. She is best known for her role as Bani Walia in the Hindi television drama Kasamh Se which aired on Zee TV. Prachi is the endorser, spokesperson, brand ambassador and the face of Neutrogena products in India. She is also the brand ambassador of Goa Tourism, a popular holiday destination in India.

Early life

Prachi was born in Surat, Gujarat, India. She studied in St Joseph Convent, Panchgani and completed her schooling until ninth grade in Surat. After that, she went to Pune for higher studies. She studied at Sinhagad college, Vadgaon, Pune. During her school time she was an outstanding student and always received prizes for many dancing and acting competitions . She was in Pune for higher studies and had almost finished her junior college when her pictures were sent for audition. She was 20 when she left her studies and started her career with Kasamh Se.

Prachi Desai in black

Career

Television (2006-2008)
Prachi starred in the serial Kasamh Se on Zee TV that got her fame. She left Kasamh Se on 15 April 2008 and was replaced by Gurdeep Kohli, after being burnt and drowned in episode 564. Kasamh Se ended 12 March 2009. In the last episode, Prachi Desai made a special appearance as the former Bani. She also did a two day cameo in Kasautii Zindagii Kay, which was aired on Star Plus. She played a school student in Prerna’s school.

On 7 September 2007, Prachi entered Jhalak Dikhhla Jaa, the Indian version of America’s dancing show, Dancing With The Stars, with choreographer Deepak Singh. She was eliminated on 10 November 2007. However, she entered the contest again via the wild-card entry on 23 November 2007. Prachi then landed a spot in the grand finale of the dance show on 15 December 2007 and won the first place amongst the contestants. She was awarded the dancing star of Jhalak Dikhhla Jaa 2. It was alleged that she was made to return as a wild card entry in spite of her elimination due to a direct intervention from her close personal friend, Ekta Kapoor, though the channel denied the allegations. Prachi also competed in a tribute show to Jhalak competition called Dard-e-Disco, alongside other former contestants, which aired on Sony Entertainment Television Asia on 31 December 2007.

Film debut & breakthrough (2008-present)
Prachi’s first film was Rock On!! (2008), where she played the wife of Farhan Akhtar. Prachi had to leave her role of “Bani” in Kasamh Se to act in Rock On. Her performance was highly appreciated throughout the film. “Prachi Desai scores in her very first feature. She has a challenging role and footage-wise too, it’s substantial. Prachi brings in a lot of freshness and poise. Plus, she’s a competent actor,” says Taran Adarsh. It was an average box-office commercial but was critically appreciated, even getting the National Film Award for Best Feature Film in Hindi. She got several nominations as debutant including the Filmfare Award. She even won Anandalok Awards as Best Actress (Hindi).

Her next film was Life Partner (2009). It didn’t do well at box office but her performance was again much appreciated. “Prachi Desai showed abundant promise in ROCK ON!! and excels in LIFE PARTNER too. This pretty girl has the potential to carry off most difficult scenes with aplomb.” says Taran Adarsh

In July 2010, she appeared in Once Upon a Time in Mumbaai with Ajay Devgan, Emraan Hashmi and Kangana Ranaut. The film proved to be a big box office success and critically praised. “Prachi Desai is a bundle of talent who proves her mettle yet again. She’s proficient in emotional scenes and sizzles in the BOBBY song-sequence.” says Taran Adarsh. Prachi’s performance earned her many awards including IIFA Awards, Stardust Awards, Zee Cine Awards, Apsara Film & Television Producers Guild Awards and many more and nominations for supporting role at Filmfare Awards and Star Screen Awards. Prachi was working on her fourth film titled Main… Joker, opposite television actor Rajeev Khandelwal. The film is in title issues with a similarly named project and thus postponed.

Prachi Desai then made a cameo appearance in Teri Meri Kahaani along with Priyanka Chopra and Shahid Kapoor which released in June, 2012. It is a tri-periodic film and she is casted for 1960 segment. Kunal Kohli, the film’s director, says he cast her because he liked her in Rock On!! and Once Upon A Time In Mumbaai. “She plays an independent, progressive girl from the 1960s, and is a point of conflict between Shahid and Priyanka Chopra. Prachi will definitely make people sit up and notice her, as she has some of the most entertaining and romantic scenes in the film. She effortlessly held her own alongside Priyanka and Shahid and is really coming into her own as an actress. She had a good run with Rock On!! and OUATIM, and now she’s doing Teri Meri Kahaani. Slowly and steadily, she’s making it into the big league. It’s a welcome and much-deserved entrance.” he says. Though a cameo, Prachi had an important role and was much appreciated both publicly and critically. Taran Adarsh mentions in his movie review, “Prachi Desai is sparkling in a cameo.”

Prachi then appeared in full fledged role in 2012 blockbuster film Bol Bachchan opposite Abhishek Bachchan, along with Ajay Devgn and Asin. The film proved to be the biggest box office success for Prachi till date. She replaced Genelia D’souza who withdrew from the film for unknown reasons. Bol Bachchan director Rohit Shetty says, “What I like about Prachi is that she’s extremely talented and very sincere. She is a natural performer. With time and experience, she will grow into a star. In my film, she plays a young Rajput girl who is Ajay Devgn’s sister, and the only girl in a group of pehelwans. Prachi is effortless in her scenes.” Alongside being a big box office hit, Prachi was again garnered with loads of appreciation for her charming role in the film. Movie Review by Taran Adarsh mentions, “Prachi Desai is striking, getting ample opportunity to showcase her talent. In fact, one hopes to see more of this talented actress in zany entertainers.”

Prachi will soon be seen with John Abraham for I, Me, Aur Main which is going to be produced by Goldie Behl and directed by debutant director Kapil Sharma. Prachi is also supposed to reprise Sridevi in one of the songs in the film.

Prachi Desai has been roped in to play the lead in Kollywood director K. S. Ravikumar first Bollywood venture. The film is Hindi remake of Sammy which stars Sanjay Dutt and Prakash Raj. The film producers and writers are also planning to rope Amitabh Bachchan in the film for the need of script. Prachi has also been signed by Vikram Bhatt for the next installment of 1920. The film is to be entirely shot in London, including shooting locations same as those for Harry Potter movie series. Prachi’s royal look in the film is to be inspired by Hollywood Actress Kate Winslet.

Other Work

Endorsements
Prachi Desai is the brand ambassador for Goa Tourism Board, a popular holiday destination in India. She is one of the two spokesperson from India for Neutrogena Products in India. She has also promoted Oral-B Smile India Movement with Sonali Bendre. Active Wheel endorsement with Salman Khan was a top rated among viewers for the chemistry between the two. On viewers’ request, the other several ads of the brand were cancelled, and the same advertisement airs till date. She also endorses Nyle Shampoo. She has also has been signed up to be the brand ambassador of Pure-it water purifier with Farhan Akhtar. Recently Prachi was chosen the brand ambassador for Gili Signature Diamond Jewellery along with several other actresses. She also endorses Taj Mahal Tea along with actor Saif Ali Khan.
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