Maggie Q to Star in New Series About a Famous Chinese Pirate

Maggie Q, the Vietnamese-American actress known for her role alongside Tom Cruise in Mission: Impossible III and her leading role in the CW action series Nikita, is confirmed to star in a historical miniseries titled Red Flag.

Set in 1800′s China, Red Flag follows the true story of the famous Ching Shih, a Chinese prostitute who eventually became one of history’s most powerful pirates. Ching gained control of the South China Sea with her crew of 100,000 sailors and over 1500 vessels, and went on to conquer the Imperial Chinese, Portuguese and British navy vessels during her reign of the seas. Ching is reported as having led the most successful crime syndicate in Chinese history.

“It’s exciting to have the opportunity to share Ching Shih’s real-life story with audiences that are both familiar and unfamiliar with her prominent history,” Maggie Q said on the latest project, which has yet to be picked up by a television network.

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Be sure to check out Maggie Q’s amazing cover story in our Winter 2012-13 issue. 
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Coca-Cola’s Multilingual SuperBowl Ad Produces Racist Criticism

I know what you’re all thinking right now: Not again. Not another instance of Americans showing their true –– and ignorant –– colors over social media for everyone to see. But yes, just as with the number of people who expressed their anger over the crowning of our first Indian American Miss America, Nina Davuluri, with tweets calling her a “terrorist,” so have SuperBowl viewers flocked to Twitter and Facebook to defend everything they believe to be “American.”

During the NFL SuperBowl, Coca-Cola aired a one-minute advertisement titled “It’s Beautiful,” which featured people of different cultures engaged in activities like dancing and watching movies, while “America the Beautiful” was sung in seven different languages. Coca-Cola posted a link to its Twitter with the caption “The only thing more beautiful than this country are the people who live here.”

Many people have praised the commercial for highlighting America’s diversity, but countless others have criticized it for not patriotic enough, because “in America, we speak English.”

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Miss Kansas had a few things to say herself.

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Watch the originally-aired SuperBowl commercial below.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=A8iM73E6JP8

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An Original Series All About Asian Girls!?

That’s right! Our wishes of seeing more Asian women in the media have been answered. Sure there’s Lucy Liu on Elementary, Brenda Song on Dads and Aubrey Anderson-Emmons on Modern Family, but it’s not very typical to see english-speaking shows focus entirely on Asian women. Mnet has hopes to change that.

Mnet America, the first and leading national television network centered on Asians, is releasing a new original series Alpha Girls. The show, which will debut on February 26 at 8pm ET/PT, follows the lives of successful Asian women and the struggles they have to endure to reach success. And don’t worry, the series also shows all the personal drama we love tuning into.

The premiere season of Alpha Girls follows TOKiMONSTA (DJ/ producer), Mina Kwon (artist, illustrator, graphic designer), Lanie Alabanza-Barcena (founder and lead designer of Hellz Bellz) and Soo Joo Park (fashion model).


TOKiMONSTA (Jennifer Lee)
TOKiMONSTA (Jennifer Lee)

TOKiMONSTA is a Korean American  electronic music producer, recording artist, and DJ. She has been ranked LA Weekly’s #1 female DJ in Los Angeles, has two albums released and is currently signed to Ultra Records.


Mina Kwon mina kwon
Mina Kwon is a Korean artist, illustrator and graphic designer known for her distinctive aesthetic and fresh look at modern day Hip Hop and street culture. Currently, she travels internationally to design album covers for Chris Brown, Sean Kingston, Soulja Boy, Swizz Beats and other big names.

 

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Soo Joo Park
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Soo Joo Park is a force to be reckoned with on the fashion runway. Her resume includes top names like Tom Ford, Karl Lagerfeld, Roberto Cavalli, Emporio Armani, Ter Et Bantine, Osklen, Alexis Mabille, Vivienne Westwood.

 


Lanie Alabanza-Barcena 
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In 2005, Lanie Alabanza-Barcena launched her own clothing line called Hellz Bellz. Based in Los Angeles, Lanie’s company has expanded, gained popularity and has collaborated with names such as Stussy, Vans, Nooka, Reebok, Sanrio Japan and G-Shock.


 

New episodes of Alpha Girls will air weekly on Wednesdays on Mnet America over eight episodes. The series will also be available online through www.mnetamerica.com and Mnet America’s YouTube channel www.youtube.com/mnetamerica.  More information on the show can be found at www.alphagirlstv.com.

 

Get To Know Janel Parrish: The Pretty Little Liar You Love To Hate

FULL NAME Janel Meilani Parrish
HERITAGE Chinese and Irish/German
AGE 24
CLAIM TO FAME The girl you love to hate is back on the fourth season of ABC Family’s hit show, Pretty Little Liars. “Mona is not a very nice person,” says Parrish of her character. “She always has a hidden agenda. I don’t think I’m like her at all, thank God!” But clearly, Parrish is doing a great job portraying what she calls “a complex character with lots of layers” — she won Choice TV Villain at the most recent Teen Choice Awards. Next up, Parrish stars opposite Jackson Rathbone (Twilight series) in the indie film The Concerto.

Go-to karaoke song: “Mercy” by Duffy.
Last time I cried: Yesterday during a movie.
Always makes me laugh: Game nights with friends.
Go-to comfort food: Thai.
Last thing I ate: Cheese and salami.
Currently on “repeat” on my iPod: “In Case” by Demi Lovato.
A guilty pleasure I don’t feel guilty about: Sex and the City reruns.
Current favorite place: Paradise Cove Beach Cafe in Malibu.
Favorite drink: Red wine!
Pet peeve: People telling me I’m being overdramatic.
Habit I need to break: Fidgeting.
Talent I’d like to have: Making my own clothes.
Word I overuse: “Literally.”
Most treasured possession: iPhone.
Greatest fear: Being alone.
Favorite childhood memory: Playing hide-and-go-seek with my cousins at my grandma’s house in Hawaii.
Motto: Timing is everything.
What’s cool about being Asian: I’m always on time ;]
My job in another life: Probably hair and makeup!

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photo Jack Blizzard
styling Reichelle Palo
hair & makeup Berenice Gallego

This story was originally published in our Winter 2013-14 issue. Get your copy here

Disney Princesses As Sailor Moon Characters

Disney’s newest animated feature Frozen brought us not one, but two new Disney Princesses. With the success of the film, the popularity of Disney Princesses have once again shot up.

Social media sites have been covered with tests to “find out which Disney Princess you are.” People have begun closely analyzing Frozen princesses Anna and Elsa as well as the classics. More and more videos of Disney song covers are being uploaded to YouTube every minute.

At this point, is there anything that could make the Disney Princess craze even more successful? How about combining it with another popular franchise?

Well that’s exactly what artist Drachea Rannak has done. Since 2013, Drachea Rannak has taken popular Disney heroins and re-imagined them as Sailor Moon characters.

Popular manga and animated series Sailor Moon is one of Japan’s most successful franchises. The English adaptations of both the manga and anime series became the first successful shōjo title in the United States. The franchise has not only stolen the hearts of Japan and the US, Sailor Moon has gained popularity worldwide.

It only seems fitting that two powerhouses join together. Drachea Rannak recently added Anna and Elsa onto his list of “Sailor Princesses.” Check them out below.

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Save The Date! The Bachelor’s Catherine Giudici is Finally Getting Married

This gorgeous 27-year-old Filipina first graced television screens on the 2013 season of The Bachelor.

The American reality television dating game show, which premiered back in 2002, received backlash over the years for its predominantly white cast. To this day, the show remains primarily white, but it has shown effort to add some diversity.

In season 17, Bachelor Sean Lowe found himself facing one of the most ethnically diverse group of girls that the show has seen yet. Among the women who stood out to us, and to Sean apparently, was Catherine Giudici.

The graphic designer eventually won Lowe’s heart, but not before bringing him home and teaching him a thing or two about the Filipino culture. As it turns out, Giudici’s mother is a trustee of the Filipino American National Historical Society so Giudici is no stranger to her roots. In fact, her full name (Catherine Ligaya Mejia Giudici) contains the word “happiness” in Tagalog. Catherine Giudici has even been found tweeting about her Filipino culture.


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After waiting patiently for nearly a year, we finally get to see the adorable couple tie the knot! The wedding will be held January 26 at  the Four Seasons Resort—The Biltmore Santa Barbara. Lucky for us, every detail of the wedding will be telecast live on ABC.

Their wedding planner Mindy Weiss says, “”Sean and Catherine have a very grown-up style right now. They want something sexy and romantic. They use certain words to kind of guide me with their vision.”

And if you thought the couple couldn’t get any cuter, let’s not forget that they have an absolutely adorable Save The Date.

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Although the couple will be in front of camera’s once again for their lavish wedding, they swear they aren’t nervous because of all the nationwide attention. Instead, they’re excited that they finally get to start their life together.

 

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Top 5 Reasons We Love Variety’s 2014 Breakthrough Actress OLIVIA MUNN

Variety‘s Breakthrough of the Year Awards celebrates and recognizes rising stars in entertainment and technology. This year, the awards ceremony took place at the Consumer Electronics Show in Vegas.

Much of our attention was focused on Variety’s 2014 Breakthrough Actress Winner, Olivia Munn. The 33-year-old half-Chinese actress has been on our radar for quite some time. Thankfully, the world is taking notice.

Munn is most known for her roles in films such as Iron Man 2 and Magic Mike as well as her roles on television shows such as The Daily Show and New Girl.

Although she is considered a “rising star,” she has captivated the hearts of her fans for years. Don’t know her yet? Now’s the time. Here are our Top 5 Reasons We Love Olivia Munn.

 


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1. She never gave up on her dreams.
In a 2011 interview with Audrey Magazine, Munn admits that when she first told her mother she wanted to be an actress, her mother adamantly disagreed and insisted that she become a lawyer.

In fact, her mother wasn’t the only one who doubted Munn’s choice of acting. Initially, Munn found her dreams difficult to follow. Her unique look and Asian eyes originally caused her to feel doubtful.

But Munn didn’t give up on her dreams. In fact, it all made her work harder to prove to everyone (including herself) that she was capable. “I told myself, my bar will always be higher than what I was doing at the time. Then if I reached that one, I would make another higher one, and another one,” she says. “I’ve worked hard for a long time [so I could] tell myself, I’ll never be the reason I hear no.”


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2. She overcame social pressures.
Munn spent much of her childhood moving around. She was born in Oklahoma, but spent a large portion of her childhood in Tokyo, Japan. Needless to say, she found it difficult to fit in.

According to Refinery29, Munn tried to change her appearance to be accepted by her peers. “I wore men’s clothing a lot in high school because I wanted to hide behind baggy pants and T-shirts. When I moved from Japan to Oklahoma at 16 I tried to go more preppy to fit in. I ditched my skater clothes but I just ended up looking like some weird girl desperately trying to fit in. The kids in school would be wearing sweater vests from Gap, but we couldn’t afford brand new clothes so I would borrow my grandmother’s linty, moth-eaten sweater vests and not realise how much of a sore thumb I looked like.”

But as expected, she overcame this need to fit in. “When you’re always the new girl, it forces you to come up with new ways to make friends,” Munn tells Audrey Magazine, “because every time you go somewhere, it’s literally the same battle. Eventually with me, once I built up so much scar tissue, I didn’t have to worry so much about becoming popular or being welcomed or being accepted.”


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3. Her strong relationship with her fans.
Over the years, Munn has gathered quite a handful of loyal fans and has proven that she doesn’t allow fame to get to her head. Her fan club is called OMFGs (Olivia Munn Fan Group) and Munn has been known to be extremely generous and kind to her dedicated fans.  In an interview with US Magazine, Munn has stated that she owes everything she has to her loyal fan group, OMFG.

“They’re amazing. I’m very lucky. It’s a really good feeling to know they have my back,” says Munn. ““They put me on this ride. They’re coming along for the ride.”

 


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4. She’s a published author.
Although Munn pursued her dream of becoming an actress despite her mother’s initial sentiments about the career, the last thing Munn wanted to do was go against her mother’s will. Munn admits that no matter what, she needed her mother’s approval before making big decisions like moving to Hollywood.

To satisfy her mother, she graduated from the University of Oklahoma with a journalism degree and work for a year at a local television station before moving west.

Although Munn is now a successful actress, she still put her degree to good use and became a published author. Suck It, Wonder Woman: The Misadventures of a Hollywood Geek, was released on July 6, 2010.

 


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5. She’s an Audrey Magazine covergirl.
The beautiful Olivia Munn graced our Spring 2011 cover. Check out the must-read cover story here.

 

Korean Twin Sisters Unrecognizable After Plastic Surgery

It’s no secret. In Asia, plastic surgery is becoming more and more common. In fact, double eyelid surgery is so typical that many girls have been known to receive the procedure as a graduation gift.

Aside from these minor procedures, just how far has surgery entered Asian culture? According to some, surgery has become a very serious ordeal. Photographer Ji Yeo tried to call attention to the amount of plastic surgery occurring in South Korea, by showing the physical cost women endure in “Korea’s beauty-obsessed culture.”

Additionally, more women seem to be willing to go to extreme measures to live up to the high expectation of Asian beauty. As a result, some have faced the horrifying repercussions of a surgery gone wrong.

Regardless of all this, many remain undaunted by the possible negative side effects. Plastic surgery remains more popular than ever. There’s Miss Korea who completed in the Miss Universe Pageant 2013. Kim Yumi had absolutely no problem admitting her multiple procedures. Then there’s the woman who was so obsessed with Miranda Kerr‘s looks that she decided to go under the knife in an effort to look like the Australian Victoria’s Secret model.

Now, apparently, there’s a Korean television show called “Let’s Beauty.” Asiantown.net claims that the purpose of this show is to “help those with special circumstances or people who are too ugly to feel confident in their life.” The participant facing “special circumstances” will have their plastic surgery sponsored by the television program and audiences follow along during the transformation.

A pair of twin sisters caught much attention after participating in the show. After their surgery, both twins look completely unrecognizable from their original self. Check it out for yourself:

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So tell us. Is this television show going too far or is it simply an entertaining topic? Watch an episode for below.

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Steven Yeun Reveals Glenn’s Secret To Survival

The Walking Dead hype is picking up once again with this new season. Admittedly, we’ve been quite hooked. We’re not ashamed to confess that one of the reasons for our TWD addiction is Glenn played by Steven Yeun.

Thankfully, our favorite character has managed to avoid his share of walkers throughout the show. Yeun opened up to AMC and revealed Glenn’s secret to survival along with other stories concerning The Walking Dead.

Check out the interview below:

 

Q: What do you do to get yourself in shape for the show every season?
A: Norman and Andy and I have a lot of discussions about this. We do have to be strong enough to pull off what we’re asked as actors to do. But then also, we want to make it realistic, in that we don’t want these guys to be jacked or anything like that. I just try to stay relatively healthy. But when it comes to gearing up for the new season, we even had discussions about taking a one week camping trip to get disheveled and disgusting. It’s interesting, because once we start shooting we actually start getting skinnier and more malnutritioned and gaunt as we go. The first and second season, Jon Bernthal got me into boxing, and that’s been good to just get strong without making you look like you’re ‘roiding out.

Q: Do you box with any other cast members?
A: Just Jon actually. He could kill me with one hit.

Q: Do any other aspects of The Walking Dead become a part of your life?
A: This show is really intense in that we’re living out these characters’ lives. So you just kind of live out really terrible situations that hit really close to home, so last year with what Glenn was going through, it was hard to not fall into his pit of despair and depression and keep my composure. I think that’s your job to kind of separate the two, so you don’t go insane.

Q: Glenn and Maggie have the best room at the prison. What’s the coolest place you’ve ever slept?
A: There are nice hotels, but nothing beats 1993, on the middle of a small mat on my grandma’s farm in one of the hottest summers in Korea. You can like smell the grain that they’re growing — they actually own a Tobacco farm. And you’re just laying there on the ground while my grandmother’s cooking.

Q: Are zombies a part of Korean culture at all?
A: I think the idea of it exists, but don’t know if it is in their pantheon of monsters. Korea has a way of being more about goblins and ghosts, and less about vampires, werewolves, and zombies.

Q: What did you know about Glenn’s arc and what surprised you about it this year?
A: I knew that going in that Glenn was going to be a little more careful. All the things that he’s suffered for and learned for his mistakes for. He wants to really keep and cherish the idea of family, and keeping those around him that he loves. Scott [Gimple] told me that was the direction Glenn was headed. But there were some surprises in terms of how feeble he was in his attempts to do so, early on.

Q: We’ve talked before about your background in comedy. Is there any space for humor for Glenn in the apocalypse?
A: I think earlier on in the first season, and the second season a bit, Glenn had that. But I think that as things wear on him, and as Glenn started having more things to care about and protect, he became a little darker. But I think that part of him still exists and hope it will come out sooner or later.

Q: What’s Glenn’s secret to survival?
A: Resilience. He’s hard to knock down, and if he does get knocked down, he’s hard to keep down.

Q: You’re an internet guy. Have you checked out any The Walking Dead tributes online?
A: The Glenn ones are pretty funny. The meme about being jealous of how Glenn does some nonsense and then gets laid? It’s good for Glenn! In person, a girl on the street once saw me about a block away and then she started walking towards me and doing the whole zombie walk. She regretted it as soon as she got up to me. She was like, “I’m so sorry, that was so embarrassing.”

 

(Source)

Flashback Friday | Ten Indian Leading Ladies You Should Know

2013 marks 100 years of Indian cinema — home of the unique film genre affectionately referred to as Bollywood — and through the century, there have been many memorable leading ladies, from Nargis, Sridevi and Rekha to Madhuri Dixit, Aishwarya Rai, Rani Mukherjee, Preity Zinta and many many more.

This year,  Audrey Magazine highlights some of our favorite Indian actresses ruling contemporary Hindi cinema today.

Here are 10 names to know:

Priyanka Chopra

When the former Miss World (2000) began her career in Bollywood, from her 2002 debut in the Tamil film Thamizhan to her damsel-in-distress role to Hrithik Roshan’s superhero in 2006′s Kriish, there was often more talk about her skimpy outfits than her acting skills. Then 2008 happened: Chopra had six films come out that year, and while the first few were unsuccessful, late 2008 brought the release of Fashion, the first role that got critics talking about her talent rather than her looks — especially when she swept all the major Indian Film Awards that year for Best Actress. Since then, even if the film she’s been in haven’t been acclaimed, people tend to point out Priyanka Chopra’s performance as the best part. Case in point: the awards she’d picked up for playing a murderess in 7 Khoon Maaf and an autistic woman in Barfi! in the last two years.

Films to watch:
Fashion
Kaminey

 

Vidya Balan

Vidya Balan has been acting in feature films for a decade, but she broke out into stardom recently with her role in The Dirty Picture, the biopic about the adult film actress Silk Smitha who was popular in the 1980s and 90s. The role earned her Filmfare and National Film Awards for Best Actress in 2012, and she followed it up with the crime thriller Kahaani, in which she plays a pregnant woman in search of her missing husband.

Films to watch:
Kahaani
The Dirty Picture

 

Kajol

Kajol (also pictured at the top of the article) has been a household name since 1995′s Dilwale Dulhania Le Jayenge (DDLJ), which kickstarted a filmgoing craze (it is the longest running Indian film in history, and as of Jan 2013, the film is still playing in a theater in Mumbai, 17 years later) as well as a timeless romantic pairing (Kajol and Shah Rukh Khan have acted in six films together). But in recent years, Kajol has brought an even greater depth to her performances. Just check her out as the blind woman in Fanaa or the grieving mother in My Name is Khan. You’ll feel like a really beautiful, soulful woman just punched you in the stomach.

Films to watch:
DDLJ
Kuch Kuch Hota Hai
Fanaa
My Name is Khan

Deepika Padukone

Deepika Padukone made her debut in 2007′s Om Shanti Om, playing two characters that looked identical though they’re from different time periods (it can happen, just go with it). But she gave both characters enough nuance to prove to audiences that she was more than a tall, strikingly-beautiful model — even though she was definitely tall and definitely strikingly beautiful. Since then, she’s taken on different types of characters, from the modern-day romantic lead in Love Aaj Kal to the downward-spiraling toxic friend in Cocktail.

Films to watch:
Om Shanti Om
Love Aaj Kal

 

Anushka Sharma

Another actress who got her start in a Shah Rukh Khan film (2008′s Rab Ne Bana Di Jodi), Anushka Sharma soon ventured out on her own and found another leading man that she seemed to have good chemistry with, on and off screen. Acting opposite co-star Ranveer Singh (quick tangent: check out his abs in Audrey’s Daily SHAG here) in Band Baaja Baaraat and Ladies Vs. Ricky Bahl, Sharma really showcased her natural charisma and ability to lead a film. In 2012, she reunited with Shah Rukh Khan in Jab Tak Hai Jaan. Whereas in Rab Ne Bana Di Jodi, she played the mourning, subdued wife whose life and belief in love needed to be re-ignited by Shah Rukh Khan’s charm, in Jab Tak Hai Jaan, she was the mini-Shah Rukh Khan, who “Shah Rukh Khan”-ed Shah Rukh Khan himself. I know it sounds confusing. But just watch the movies.

Films to watch:
Rab Ne Bana Di Jodi
Baand Baaja Baaraat
Jab Tak Hai Jaan

 

Katrina Kaif

Born in Hong Kong to a Kashmiri Indian father and an English mother, Katrina Kaif often seems to have a maturity beyond her years onscreen. By 25, she was playing the Chief Minister party leader in the political thriller Raajneeti — and somehow pulling it off. After memorable turns as a civil rights activist circa 9/11 in New York and a diving instructor helping Hrithik Roshan get over his fear of water (and workaholism) in Zindagi Na Milegi Dobara, she helped jaded modern audiences believe in “old school” true love again in last year’s blockbuster Yash Raj film Jab Tak Hai Jaan.

Films to watch:
Zindagi Na Milegi Dobara
Raajneeti
Jab Tak Hai Jaan

Farah Khan

Farah Khan has been in the industry for what seems like forever: as a choreographer, she is responsible for so many memorable Bollywood dance sequences that it’s almost impossible to count, but some of our favorites include “Chaiya Chiaya,” “Shava Shava,” and “Maahi Ve.” In addition to her choreography, she’s directed memorable films such as Main Hoon Na and Om Shanti Om. In 2012, she won a Stardust Best Actress Award for her on-screen debut Shirin Farhad Ki Toh Nikal Padi. But even when she’s behind the camera, she is an incomparable leading lady.

Films to Watch:
Om Shanti Om (as director)
Shirin Farhad Ki Toh Nikal Padi

 

Sonam Kapoor

Sonam Kapoor (daughter of Anil Kapoor, who international audiences know from Slumdog Millionaire and TV’s 24) made her debut in 2007 with Saawariya, opposite Ranbir Kapoor. At the time, Saawariya got a lot of attention, because although the two of them were newcomers to the industry, the film was co-produced by Sony Pictures, and it was the first Bollywood movie to receive a North American release by a Hollywood studio. Since then, Kapoor has landed girl next door roles in romantic comedies, such as Aisha and I Hate Luv Storys.

Films to Watch:
Saawariya
Aisha

 

Kareena Kapoor

A descendant of the legendary Kapoor family, Kareena Kapoor is continuing the legacy started by Prithviraj Kapoor and cemented by Raj Kapoor, as Kareena was most recently named the highest ranking female actress in Forbe India’s Celebrity 100 list. A power player in the industry, Kapoor has been one of India’s highest paid actress in years, starring in blockbusters including Aamir Khan’s 3 Idiots, Salman Khan’s Bodyguard, Shah Rukh Khan’s Ra.One, and most recently reuniting with Aamir Khan in Talaash: The Answer Lies Within. 

Films to Watch:
3 Idiots
Ek Main Aur Ekk Tu

 

There are many more, but here are 10 to start with. Who are your favorite Indian actresses?