It’s a thrilling time for women in Indian cinema. Filmmakers have matured from casting damsels in distress to making their leading ladies certified action stars. Here’s a list of our favourites who double as hot lethal weapons (for your eyes only).
By Meher Bajwa
1. Deepika Padukone in Chandni Chowk To China.
Being paired opposite India’s action star, Akshay Kumar, and still managing to shine in an action sequence is not easy. But Padukone excelled in her double role as Sakhi and Suzy, feline add-ons included. While we haven’t really seen her do many action-backed roles since, we’re really looking forward to her next. If you’ve watched the trailers for Sanjay Leela Bhansali’s epic, Bajirao Mastani, you know Deepika is going to be amazing as the sword-wielding Mastani.
2. Priyanka Chopra in Quantico and Don.
Undoubtedly the reigning queen of action in Hindi cinema, Priyanka has now taken us overseas with her headlining action show Quantico on ABC. From what we’ve seen of the show till now, we’re thrilled at how adept this lady is at honing her skills in the action department—but that comes with the territory when you’re playing an FBI trainee/agent, right? We’re also looking forward to her cop avatar in Gangaajal 2. Priyanka has also been seen kicking ass in: Don, Don 2, Mary Kom, and Drona.
3. Anushka Sharma in NH10.
Anushka made everyone sit up and take notice when she decided to produce the NH10 story herself. And what a story it was. NH10 gave us the new generation Angry Young Woman that we’d been waiting for. Anushka singlehandedly takes down a pack of village goons who are out for blood. We still get the chills when we hear the sound of metal scraping asphalt...
4. Kangna Ranaut in Revolver Rani.
No one does gangster swag quite like Kangana. The ease of it almost makes you feel like she was born toting revolvers (as the title suggests) and putting holes in people. There was something very attractive about her bi-polar goon character in Revolver Rani, feel free to call us crazy.
PS: We love that Alka Singh aka Revolver Rani always insists on being “on top”.
5. Amy Jackson in Singh Is Bling.
Or should we be cheesy enough to call her Action Jackson? This pretty young thing can pack a punch! In our minds, there’s no doubt she stole the show in the otherwise iffy Singh Is Bling with her MMA-style fighting skills. And she performed most of the stunts herself. You know it’s a pretty sweet deal when you’ve got a gorgeous girl who’s saving your ass from a bunch of six-packed fiends out to get you.
6. Aishwarya Rai in The Last Legion.
While our minds might travel to that infamous lake scene from The Last Legion, fact is Aishwarya kicked some serious butt in the film as the Kalarippayattu-practising Keralan warrior, Mira. Respect. Making her comeback with Jazbaa this year, Aishwarya proved she’s still got the looks to
kill and the skills to match. PS: Jazbaa’s director, Sanjay Gupta, got the Fast & Furious series’ action director for the film.
7. Neha Dhupia in Phas Gaye Re Obama.
Phas Gaye Re Obama’s Munni Madam, a dreaded dacoit and self-confessed man-hater, has a fan club of her own, no doubt. Neha thrilled us on-screen with her chilly stare and daaku attire while simultaneously delivering with her comic timing. This is one Munni we wouldn’t want to be caught messing with.
8. Sonakshi Sinha in Holiday.
Bodacious Sonakshi has turned over a brand-new leaf with a slew of action-oriented films, starting with the Akshay Kumar-starrer Holiday where she played a college boxing champ. Pretty neat stuff. But what we’re really looking forward to is this powerhouse performer in Akira (she’s been training extra hours and practising martial arts for the hardcore action sequences) and in Force 2 with John Abraham.
9. Katrina Kaif in Phantom.
First there was Ek Tha Tiger with Salman Khan. Then came Phantom with Saif Ali Khan. Hot 100 resident Katrina Kaif is constantly pushing the boundaries of what’s expected of her. Granted, some of the action sequences might come across as unrealistic but at the end of the day Kaif has put in a ton of effort and it shows—from weight training to gun shooting classes, she’s leaving no stone unturned. We’re pretty happy about that. You?