Happy birthday Priyanka Chopra: Tracing her journey to global dominance
If there had to be one Indian celebrity you'd want to boast about to an American friend, it would undoubtedly be Priyanka Chopra Jonas. From featuring on global magazine covers to being counted among the most loved power couples around the world, the diva is everywhere. As she turns 38 today, let's find out what really makes her the global powerhouse that she is.
If you come to think of it: Before she became the beloved film actor, Priyanka had already claimed a major global title: Miss World. Unbeknown to herself, Priyanka's ever-supportive parents submitted her pictures to the Miss India pageant in 1999, where she won the first runner-up. She went on to enter the Miss World and secured the title. She was 17 at the time.
From that point, there was no looking back for Priyanka, as she was soon flooded with film roles. Her first major Bollywood outing came in 2003 with The Hero: Love Story of a Spy. Since then, PeeCee has starred in over 60 movies, earning in enviable crores per role and winning a slew of awards at every notable awards night.
But what truly makes her journey incredible and unique compared to her fellow desi counterparts is how swiftly and smoothly she made a name for herself in the West. From starring on the cover of major publications, including Vogue, to becoming a regular on popular American talk shows, including those hosted by Ellen Degeneres and Jimmy Fallon, every stepping stone made her more popular.
Priyanka broke through in Hollywood with her acclaimed role as Alex Parrish in ABC thriller Quantico, that ran for three seasons. With that, Priyanka also became the first South Asian to lead an American network drama series. Also, the money came raining: She earned over Rs. 22 crore per season. She went on to star in crowd-puller films like Baywatch.
Priyanka heads Purple Pebble Pictures, which she founded in 2015. The production company is known for backing small-budget regional cinema. In fact, one of their initial productions, Marathi film Ventilator, was a critical as well as commercial success. Made on a budget of Rs. 3.5 crore, it amassed a whopping Rs. 25 crore at the box office.
Priyanka is also one of most-followed celebrities around the world. At the time of writing, she had a follower count of 55 million (5.5 crore) on Instagram, 26.3 million (2.63 crore) on Twitter, and another 47 million (4.7 crore) on Facebook. For sake of perspective, one of India's most-loved superstars, Shah Rukh Khan is followed by 22.2 million (2.2 crore) on Instagram.
Well, Priyanka Chopra is never short of work. She will star in Robert Rodriguez's Netflix superhero movie We Can Be Heroes, The White Tiger, and Keanu Reeves-starrer The Matrix 4 too. Further, she is executive-producing an unscripted Amazon series based on Indian pre-wedding ceremony of Sangeet, and will also star in Amazon series Citadel, directed by Russo Brothers and co-starring Richard Madden.
Even a pandemic cannot stop Priyanka from impressing the world. Recently, she signed an ambitious multimillion dollar TV deal with Amazon, through which the parties are looking to bring more regional representation to the world television. Striving to tell women-led stories from around the world, Priyanka said, "Amazon is such a great partner to do that because their reach and outlook is so global."
A supporter of causes like education for girls, women's rights and gender equity, Priyanka has donated across India and the globe. Most recently, she teamed up with the United Nations Children's Fund to provide 50,000 pair of shoes to school children in Belize.