Jacqueline Fernandez (born 11 August 1985) is a Bahraini-Sri Lankan actress, former model, and the winner of the 2006 Miss Universe Sri Lanka pageant. As Miss Universe Sri Lanka she represented her country at the 2006 world Miss Universe pageant. She graduated with a degree in mass communication from the University of Sydney, and worked as a television reporter in Sri Lanka.
While on a modelling assignment in India in 2009, Fernandez successfully auditioned for Sujoy Ghosh’s fantasy drama Aladin, which marked her acting debut. Fernandez’ breakthrough role was in Mohit Suri’s psychological thriller Murder 2 (2011), her first commercial success. This was followed by glamorous roles in the ensemble-comedy Housefull 2 (2012), and the action thriller Race 2 (2013), both of which were box-office successes. Her performance in the former garnered her an IIFA Award nomination for Best Supporting Actress. In 2014, Fernandez played the leading lady in Sajid Nadiadwala’s Kick, which is one of the highest-grossing Bollywood films of all time.
One of the most popular actresses in India, she was the recipient of the IIFA Award for Star Debut of the Year – Female in 2010. Alongside her screen acting career, Fernandez has participated in stage shows, and is active in humanitarian work.
In 2009, Fernandez traveled to India for a modeling assignment. She studied acting under the mentorship of theatre director Barry John, and successfully auditioned for Sujoy Ghosh’s fantasy film Aladin (2009) her acting debut. She played the love interest of Riteish Deshmukh’s character, a role based on the Princess Jasmine character. Fernandez garnered mixed reviews for her performance. Anupama Chopra of NDTV called her a “plastic debutant”, and Rajeev Masand of CNN-IBN felt that she was: “easy on the eyes and appears confident but has precious little to do”. Although the film was a critical and commercial failure, she was nominated for a IIFA Award for Star Debut of the Year – Female.
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