Swara in 2017
|Born||9 April 1988|
|Alma mater||Miranda House|
Jawaharlal Nehru University
Swara Bhaskar (born 9 April 1988) is an Indian actress who works in the Hindi film industry. Best known for her supporting work in mainstream productions and starring roles in independent films, she has won two Screen Awards and has been nominated for Filmfare Award on three occasions.
Swara, the daughter of naval Commodore C. Uday Bhaskar (Retd.), was born and raised in Delhi. After receiving her bachelor's degree in English literature from the Miranda House, she enrolled herself at the Jawaharlal Nehru University to complete her master's in Sociology. Swara made her film debut with a supporting role in the 2009 drama Madholal Keep Walking, a commercial failure. She achieved wider recognition for her supporting role of a bride-to-be in the commercially successful romantic comedy Tanu Weds Manu (2011). Her performance in the film was well received by critics and she garnered a Filmfare Award for Best Supporting Actress nomination.
Swara garnered further praise for her performance in the critically acclaimed romantic drama Raanjhanaa (2013), the role earned her second Filmfare Award for Best Supporting Actress nomination. She then reprised her role from Tanu Weds Manu in the film's sequel and later appeared in the romantic drama Prem Ratan Dhan Payo; both productions were among the highest-grossing Bollywood films of 2015. Her starring roles in the independent films Nil Battey Sannata (2016), and Anaarkali of Aarah (2017) earned her further acclaim. She won the Screen Award for Best Actress (Critics) for the former and was nominated for Filmfare Critics Award for Best Actress for the latter.
Early life and education
Swara was born on 9 April 1988 in Delhi to C. Uday Bhaskar, an Indian Navy officer of Telugu descent, and his wife Ira Bhaskar, a professor of cinema studies in Jawaharlal Nehru University, Delhi who is of Bihari origin. Her maternal grandmother was from Varanasi.
Swara grew up in Delhi, where she did her schooling from Sardar Patel Vidyalaya. She subsequently studied English literature at Delhi University's Miranda House where she was classmates with another actress, Minissha Lamba. She did her master's degree in sociology from Jawaharlal Nehru University, Delhi.
2009–2012: Debut and further roles
Before Swara started acting in films she was associated with N. K. Sharma's "Act One" theater group in Delhi. She shifted to Mumbai in 2008 and made her acting debut with the 2009 film Madholal Keep Walking, which was screened at the 33rd Cairo International Film Festival but underperformed at the box office India. She then played a supporting role in Sanjay Leela Bhansali's drama Guzaarish (2010), alongside Hritik Roshan and Aishwariya Rai.
Swara then appeared in Srinivas Sunderrajan's black and white thriller The Untitled Kartik Krishnan Project, which was touted as India's first mumblecore film, made on the budget of ₹40,000 (US$560) and completed in one year, was also the first Indian film to be screened at the Transilvania International Film Festival. However, both Guzaarish and The Untitled Kartik Krishnan Project were box-office failures and Swara remained unnoticed for her performances.
Swara garnered widespread recognition from the audiences and critics by appearing in the 2011's commercially successful film Tanu Weds Manu in which she played the role of Payal, the best friend of the lead actress Kangana Ranaut. She received praise and several nominations, including the Best Supporting Actress conferred by the Filmfare Awards.
2013–present: Critical and commercial success
In 2013, she played the lead role in Listen... Amaya (2013), which also saw the reunion of actors Farooq Sheikh and Deepti Naval after 28 years, and earned positive reviews from critics. She then appeared in Raanjhanaa, along with Dhanush and Sonam Kapoor, which was one of the highest-grossing Bollywood film of the year. She received wide critical praise as well as her second Filmfare Award for Best Supporting Actress nomination for her role of Bindiya in the film. She appeared in a lead female role in the box-office flop Sabki Bajegi Band opposite Sumeet Vyas and in the moderate successful Machhli Jal Ki Rani Hai with Bhanu Uday.
Swara served as a host for Shyam Benegal's television mini-series Samvidhaan, which was based on the making of the Indian Constitution. The series aired on Rajya Sabha TV from March 2014 to May 2014. On her trip to Lahore, Pakistan, Swara appeared as a guest in the Pakistani TV comedy show, Mazaaq Raat which was aired in April 2015.
Swara had three releases in 2015. In her first release, she reprised her role of Payal in the romantic comedy Tanu Weds Manu Returns, a sequel to the 2011 film Tanu Weds Manu. The film and Swara's performance received wide critical acclaim. The film was a financial success as well and became one of the few women-centric films that rank among the highest-grossing Indian films. Her next release was the romantic drama Prem Ratan Dhan Payo, in which she played the role of Rajkumari Chandrika alongside Salman Khan and Sonam Kapoor. Directed by Sooraj Barjatya, the film received mixed reviews. However, Swara's performance was well received by the critics and audience. With an estimated collection of ₹400 crore (US$56 million), the film became one of the highest-grossing Indian films. That same year, she played a minor role in the collaborative bilingual X: Past Is Present. The film was directed by eleven filmmakers, and Swara appeared in Nalan Kumarasamy's segment, Summer Holiday, which revolves around a young boy (played by Anshuman Jha), who goes to South India for summer holidays where an Aunty seduced him so that her husband can rape him. Although the film received mixed reviews, but her role of Aunty was particularly praised. Namrata Joshi of The Hindu wrote "X: Past Is Present belongs to its women".
In 2016, Swara played the lead in Anand L. Rai's comedy drama Nil Battey Sannata which marked her fourth collaboration with Rai. Swara was initially skeptical about the film because of the age difference between her and her character. However, she changed her mind after reading the script and played the role of a mother of a teenager. Upon the release, the film as well as Swara's performance received critical acclaim and she was awarded with the Best Actress trophy at the Silk Road International Film Festival in September 2015. She began working in web series with It's Not That Simple, which is produced by Viacom 18's streaming service Voot. The show revolves around the idea of marriage, relationships, a woman's stand in a marriage, love etc. The series features Swara along with television stars Vivan Bhatena, Akshay Oberoi and Karanveer Mehra in the lead roles, with Danish Aslam as the director.
As of 2013[update], Swara had completed shooting for Abbas Tyrewala's comedy drama Mango, starring Chandan Roy Sanyal and Monali Thakur, being produced under the banner of Kaleidoscope Entertainment. The film has been infinitely delayed. She also played the lead role in Shashanka Ghosh's Veere Di Wedding, a romantic comedy, co-starring Kareena Kapoor, Sonam Kapoor and Shikha Talsania, about four girls who embark on a trip from Delhi to Europe. Her masturbation scene using a vibrator in the film was praised for its frank portrayal of women's sexuality.
|Denotes films that have not yet been released|
|2009||Madholal Keep Walking||Sudha M. Dubey|
|The Untitled Kartik Krishnan Project||Swara Bhaskar / Maya|
|2011||Tanu Weds Manu||Payal Sinha Singh|
|Chillar Party||Battle Hour Anchor|
|2013||Listen... Amaya||Amaya Krishnamoorthy|
|Sabki Bajegi Band||Jaya|
|2014||Machhli Jal Ki Rani Hai||Ayesha Saxena|
|2015||Tanu Weds Manu Returns||Payal Sinha Singh|
|Prem Ratan Dhan Payo||Rajkumari Chandrika|
|X: Past Is Present||Aunty|
|2016||Nil Battey Sannata||Chanda Sahay|
|2017||Anaarkali of Aarah||Anarkali|
|2018||Veere Di Wedding||Sakshi Soni|
|2020||Sheer Qorma||Rukhsar Siddiqui||Filming|
|2016–present||It's Not That Simple||Meera||Web series|||
|2019||Hello Mini||Mx Player|||
|2020||Rasbhari||Shanoo Bansal||Amazon Prime Video|||
|2020||Flesh||ACP Radha Nautiyal||Eros Now|
|2020||Bhaag Beanie Bhaag||Beanie Bhatnagar||Netflix|||
|2012||Tanu Weds Manu||57th Filmfare Awards||Best Supporting Actress||Nominated|||
|2012 Zee Cine Awards||Best Actor in a Supporting Role– Female||Won|
|International Indian Film Academy Awards||Best Supporting Actress||Nominated|||
|Screen Awards||Best Supporting Actress||Nominated|||
|2014||Raanjhanaa||Filmfare Awards||Best Supporting Actress||Nominated|||
|International Indian Film Academy Awards||Best Supporting Actress||Nominated|
|Screen Awards||Best Supporting Actress||Won|||
|Zee Cine Awards||Best Actor in a Supporting Role– Female||Won|||
|2016||Nil Battey Sannata||Silk Road International Film Festival||Best Actress||Won|||
|Screen Awards||Best Actress – Critics||Won|||
|2018||Anaarkali of Aarah||Filmfare Awards||Best Actress (Critics)||Nominated|||
|Veere Di Wedding||Lux Golden Rose Awards||Confident Beauty of the Year||Template:WON|||
|Screen Awards||Best Actor in a Supporting Role (Female)||Nominated|||
|2019||Filmfare Awards||Best Supporting Actress||Nominated|||
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- "'Veere Di Wedding' Twitter talk: 'Never heard abuses in films before?' Tweeple debate the 'sexist' criticism". 2 June 2018.
- "Sheer Qorma poster: Swara Bhasker and Divya Dutta-starrer hints at a unique story of unconditional love". Mumbai Mirror. 12 October 2019.
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