Adah Sharma is an Indian film actress who mainly appears in Hindi and Telugu language films. Sharma, after finishing her schooling, made her acting debut with a leading role in the 2008 Hindi language horror film 1920, a box office success. Her portrayal of a possessed woman in the film was critically praised and earned her the Filmfare Award for Best Female Debut nomination. After the release of her critically and commercially successful romantic comedy film Hasee Toh Phasee (2014), she ventured into the South Indian film industries, where her first six films—five in Telugu language Heart Attack (2014), S/O Satyamurthy (2015), Subramanyam for Sale (2015), Garam (2016) and Kshanam (2016) and one in Kannada—Rana Vikrama (2015), achieved commercial success and garnered her critical appreciation for her performances and established her as one of the most promising new actresses of Telugu cinema.
Trying to enter the film industry, Sharma auditioned for several roles in Mumbai, but was rejected either because of her curly hair or because the makers felt that she looked too young. She eventually landed the lead female role in the 2008 Hindi horror film 1920 opposite Rajneesh Duggal and directed by Vikram Bhatt. Her portrayal of a possessed woman was unanimously praised by critics. The Times of India’s Nikhat Kazmi commented that she “delivers a consummate performance”, while Ashok Nayak from nowrunning.com wrote that she “rocks in her debut with a great performance”. Other reviewers labelled her performance as “excellent”, “(exceptionally) brilliant”, and “incredibly convincing”. The film was a commercial success, too, Bhatt’s first box office hit after six years and 10 films, and earned Sharma a Best Female Debut nomination at the 54th Filmfare Awards. Three years later, she had her next release, Phhir, again a horror film, which saw her collaborating with Vikram Bhatt, who wrote the film, and her 1920 co-star Rajneesh Duggal. Phhir, however, was not as well received as 1920, opening to negative reviews, and failing at the box office, with Sharma getting mixed response for her performance. While Sujata Chakrabarti wrote that “not even for a minute does she exude the intensity of being a psychic”, Sify’s Sonia Chopra stated that she was “the only one in the film who can act”. Her third film, the romantic comedy Hum Hai Raahi Car Ke, released another two years later and was a critical and financial failure.