Over the years, the role of female protagonist in Bollywood has seen a sea of change. While some actresses are only to be cast as ‘eye candy’, there are those who have been bold enough to shed that image and ‘take up arms’.
From Kangana’s powerful performance in Queen to Vidya’s twist in Kahaani, the type of roles being picked by heroines now, seem far more interesting. Many actresses have also picked up action based roles and kicked some serious butt while doing justice to a song sequence. Here’s our list of seven awesome actresses who have gone from being ‘petite to daring’ in action avatars!
One of Bollywood's highest-paid actresses, Priyanka Chopra is one person who deserves to kick-start this list. Having successfully portrayed strong and spirited characters in movies like Fashion (2008), Kaminey (2009), 7 Khoon Maaf (2011) and Barfi! (2012), she is already recognized in the industry for her versatility in portraying unconventional roles. For movies like Drona - where she played a female bodyguard, Priyanka undertook training in ‘Gatka’ - a form of martial art. Her powerful fighting capabilities were also seen in Don 2 while fighting Shahrukh Khan. Also, her next release, a biopic on Olympic gold medallist Mary Kom for which she has prepared extensively to step into the shoes of a professional boxer, will once again showcase her in an action based avatar. Knock us out girl!
From jumping off a cliff with Hrithik Roshan in Dhoom 2 to a fantastic display of sword fighting in Jodha Akbar, Aishwarya Rai is the next actress we’d like to acknowledge. Facing her fears and learning sword fighting for close to two months, surely paid off with accolades in this epic role! That’s not all. She’s also done some awesome stunts in Raavan. Considering her talent, we definitely recommend that you do not engage in warfare with this beauty! Is Jr. Bacchan listening?
While we admit that she has only done a few action scenes, Deepika Padukone is a force to reckon with. If you remember, for Chandni Chowk to China, Deepika attempted an action based role while playing double. It is rumoured that despite being hurt, she did not go bring down the pace on her extensive training in martial arts [along with her co-stars] to deliver the perfect shot for this role. Speak of being professional and dedicated to the art! She was also seen fighting off love and enemies in ‘Goliyon Ki Raasleela’ with Ranveer Kapoor. Kudos Deepika!
Yes! We’ve seen Katrina Kaif go ‘kamli’ in the role of a gymnast in Dhoom 3 and jump off buildings in ‘Ek Tha Tiger’. If we are to believe the stunts, this girl has some degree of flexibility and is ready to rumble at the box office with loads of stunts and action in the Bollywood remake of Knight and Day – an action film where the female protagonist has a significant role. While its hearsay, a little birdie also mentioned about some more action sequences in ‘Phantom’ - her next film with Saif Ali Khan. We are super excited. Are you?
If you are wondering why a gifted dancer like Madhuri Dixit features on this list, we recommend you watch Gulab Gang. In the movie, Madhuri plays Rajjo – the leader of a gang of Indian women dressed in pink coloured saris, fighting for their rights. Beating up rogues on screen is no easy task. It is said that for this role, Madhuri trained in trained in martial art forms like Shaolin Kung Fu, Pekiti-Tirsia Kali and Shaolin Chin Na. Add some stick training, Shaolin joint locking, Kali knife and some close combat fight training and you have one heck of an ‘action diva’ ready to wow you on screen!
While the industry is still talking of Kangana Ranaut’s performance in Queen and what a superlative job she has done, Kangana has given trade pundits more to talk about. If you go by the posters of Revolver Rani, you surely can expect a lot of action from this strong ‘bandit styled’ daring dame in the coming weeks. Prior to Revolver Rani, she has also adorned a more glamorous – Lara Croft styled action role in Krrish 3 where she plays a mutant [similar to the character Mystique in X Men] who falls in love with Hrithik Roshan. Kangana, you surely have our attention!
Shilpa Shetty is one actress who can not only look awesome in beach wear but also with a gun in her hand. In Dus, a 2005 action spy thriller, directed by Anubhav Sinha and produced by Nitin Manmohan; Shilpa Shetty a.k.a Aditi Kumar stepped into the role of being a member in the elite Anti-Terrorist Cell (ATC) fighting terrorists with her brains, guns and a whole lot of guts! Way to go Shilpa! We sure hope to see you in a sequel.
There’s our line-up of seven actresses who can carry of being action divas. Know any more? Tell us!