Ameesha Patel (born Amisha Amit Patel; 9 June 1975) is an Indian actress and model who predominantly appears in Bollywood. She has also appeared in few Telugu films. Making her acting debut in the blockbuster Kaho Naa… Pyaar Hai (2000), Patel won critical praise for her performance in Gadar: Ek Prem Katha (2001), which became one of the biggest hits in the history of Hindi cinema, earning her a Filmfare Special Performance Award. Her performance in the 2002 film “Humraaz” received critical acclaim & it was one of the biggest hits of the year receiving her a nomination of Best Actress .
Her performance in the 2006 film Ankahee, received critical recognition. In 2007 she appeared in a supporting role in Honeymoon Travels Pvt. Ltd. and also co-starred Akshay Kumar in Bhool Bhulaiyaa. Rediff featured Patel as one of the top Bollywood actresses of 2001.
Patel is frequently cited as one of the “sexiest” Bollywood actresses of all time.
In 2011, she founded her own production company Ameesha Patel Productions. In 2013, she made an extended appearance in the Race 2.
Patel’s first opportunity for acting came in the form of an offer from her father’s schoolmate, Rakesh Roshan, to star opposite his son, Hrithik Roshan, in Kaho Naa… Pyaar Hai (2000). The offer came immediately after she graduated from high school but she refused the project because she wanted to continue her education in USA. Afterward, Kareena Kapoor replaced her but luckily, Kapoor dropped out a few days into principal photography and Patel was given the opportunity once again during a family lunch. She readily agreed to do the project this time. The role of an exuberant college girl in love, undergoing a tortuous time at losing her lover and rediscovering a more mature relationship gave Patel scope to perform. The film was a smashing success and established Patel as a rising star, earning her awards for Best Debut at a number of award ceremonies.In her second film, the Telugu language drama Badri, she starred opposite Pawan Kalyan. The film was a major success, grossing more than Rs 120 million in India.
2001 saw her appearing in Anil Sharma’s cross-border romance, Gadar: Ek Prem Katha, alongside Sunny Deol. Patel signed on much before she shot into the limelight with Kaho Naa… Pyaar Hai and was among 22 girls that were screen-tested from 500 girls who came to audition for the film. Patel had gone through a 12-hour audition before she got the part.The film went on to become the top-grossing film of the year, as well as the biggest hit of the 21st century, earning Rs 973 million in India.Set during the Indo-Pakistani War of 1947, it featured Patel as Sakeena, a Muslim girl who finds refuge in Deol’s house during the riots, and subsequently falls for him. Her performance was praised, and won her the Filmfare Special Performance Award, as well as nominations for Best Actress at various award ceremonies. Taran Adarsh of IndiaFM concluded, “Despite being one-film-old, Amisha Patel deserves full marks for handling the complex role with elegance. She looks the character she is portraying and impresses with a natural performance.” The film was perceived as being excessively anti-Pakistani.