With a career that has been five years in the making, the stars have finally aligned in favour of KIARA ADVANI. With a promising year ahead, this is her time and she’s ready to claim her rightful place in the spotlight
Kiara Advani is currently navigating her way through a positively career-changing phase. With the buzz around her name at an all-time high, she has risen through the ranks of the Bollywood circuit and has become a bankable name in the business. Even as Kabir Singh with actor Shahid Kapoor is soon to hit theaters, Kiara has already begun work on her next project—Laaxmi Bomb—with actor Akshay Kumar. Simultaneously, she’s appearing alongside Sidharth Malhotra in Shershaah—a movie that celebrates the story of Kargil war hero Vikram Batra. Later this year, she’ll share screen time with Kumar, Kareena Kapoor Khan and Diljit Dosanjh in Good News.
All things considered, Kiara is living out her dreams. “This is how I imagined it would be—working round the clock on a film set; basically, eating, living and breathing cinema. Now that I have these opportunities, I don’t want to leave any stone unturned.” This passion for her job is what compelled Kiara to keep an open mind. Case in point is Lust Stories—an anthology film that instantly catapulted her to the front of the line. “Netflix’s Lust Stories was a daring, performance-oriented project and I must give due credit to Karan (Johar), who handled the risqué subject aesthetically. I put my faith and career in his hands and those 25 minutes of screen time changed my life,” she claims.
Outfit: Shivan & Narresh; Nath: Khurana Jewellery House; Hathphool: Shri Paramani Jewels; Ring: RESA – Fine Jewellery by Megha Malik
As she finds herself at a promising juncture, she harbours dreams of working with respected directors and actors—all the while hoping to build her cinematic repertoire. “Among other things, my career goals are to work with Mr (Amitabh) Bachchan, Aamir Khan and Sanjay Leela Bhansali. On the one hand, I’d like to find myself playing the quintessential YRF leading lady; on the other hand, I’d love to perform in a full-on action flick,” she reveals.
Kiara’s humility and approach to hard work remain well preserved. Regardless of the ups and downs of showbiz or the increasing competition—her confidence and determination remain unscathed. “M.S. Dhoni: The Untold Story (2016) was a career high, which was followed by Machine (2017)—one of my most forgettable films. Eventually the buzz— positive or negative— dies down. Life goes on and you have to start from scratch all over again. You can’t live in a bubble fixated on that one hit film. One must constantly pursue good work.”
Outfit and Shoes: Papa Don’t Preach by Shubhika; Haathphool, earrings and ring: Outhouse
Unlike the film, her special appearance in Kalank (2019)—one of the most anticipated releases of the year— received a stamp of approval. “I got to share screen space with the iconic Madhuri Dixit, which was truly gratifying. I’m a part of this industry because I was inspired by artists like her, so whatever the outcome of a film, I value the experience. I view it as a learning process where I get to check off items from my bucket list. You see, I’m someone who trusts my gut feeling when agreeing to do a film. If I want to watch it, I want to be in it. Then if the film does or doesn’t work, I see it as a part of my journey. Her love for Bollywood and what it has given her is tangible. “It feels empowering to be in Bollywood today. Women support women and people have your back. Not just the industry, but our audience has become accepting of strong female leads, too,” she points out.
In conversations with Kiara, talk of romance is not just limited to the movies. “I’m a die-hard romantic,” she reveals. “If I’m in love, no matter what age or stage of my career I am at, I wouldn’t shy away from it. I’m the kind of person who loves to walk hand in hand with my partner and I’d expect the same affection in return,” she confesses. While she hasn’t given much thought to her wedding day, she does have a few ideas. “I’d like to go quirky with my mehendi look. For the ceremony, I want to keep things traditional. I’ve attended so many weddings in the past year and I’ve come to realise that you could have the biggest superstar as your guest, but on that day, the bride is still the most beautiful woman in the room. I’d want my simplicity to shine through,” she shares.
Outfit: Corset top by Arpita Mehta, Lehenga skirt by Ritu Kumar; Necklace and haathphools: Khurana Jewellery House; Bangles: Anmol
Perhaps it’s Advani’s faith in her own abilities that has placed her on the fast track to success. And here’s another insight into her accomplishments, as she states, “It’s important to be your own biggest fan. Then, nobody can tell you that you’re not good enough.” Playing in the big leagues now, her self-belief is all the sustenance she needs.
Photographs: Rohan Shrestha, Styling: Lynn Lobo, Hair & Make-up: Tenzin Kyizom, Tea sets: Tasse de Thé, Cake: Deliciae Patisserie by Bunty Mahajan