Ileana D’Cruz is an Indian film actress who mostly used to feature in Telugu movies. She was initially a model and later began acting in films. In 2006, she debuted as the lead actress in the hit Telugu movie Devadasu, which was directed by Y.V.S.Chowdhary. Ileana then went to feature in many commercially successful Telugu films like Pokiri, Jalsa, and Kick, which established her as one of the top leading ladies in Tollywood.
Ileana D’Cruz debut Tamil movie was Kedi opposite actor Ravi Krishna. It did not do well. However, her 2012 comeback Tamil film Nanban helped her cement her place in Kollywood as well.
In 2012, D’Cruz debuted as a Bollywood actress in the critically acclaimed and commercially hit film Barfi. She worked with Ranbir Kapoor and Priyanka Chopra in this well received Anurag Basu film. The movie got her the Filmfare Award for Best Female Debut. Ileana maintains that it was her great fortune that she was offered Barfi so very early in her career. She considers it to be her ‘The Dirty Picture.’ However, she reiterates that she did not want to be cast as an ‘arty’ type actress and hence did not immediately take up more roles like Barfi.
Ileana D’Cruz was born on November 1, 1987, in Mumbai. Her father Ronaldo Leo is Catholic and a lawyer by profession, while her mother Samira is a Muslim. She is the second child of her parents and has 3 siblings, an older sister named Farrah, a younger brother named Rhys, and the youngest sister is named Eileen. D’Cruz’s first name has its origins in Greek mythology and means Helen of Troy.
Ileana grew up partly in the city of Mumbai and partly in Goa. When she was just ten years old the entire family moved back to Parra, Goa. She lived there with her family for about 7 years. After her success in the Telugu film industry, this 5’4″ beauty relocated to Hyderabad. Ileana completed her schooling in Goa and later graduated from Mumbai University.
Ileana D’Cruz is very close to her mother whom she idolizes. It was she who prompted Ileana to start modeling and encouraged her all through her career, from the beginning till now. Ileana states that her mother came from a conservative Muslim family where girls had to wear a burkha at all times and were not allowed to pursue education. Her best friend in Bollywood is Kareena Kapoor. She met her on the sets of Happy Ending where Ileana was shooting with Saif Ali Khan and they bonded like long lost sisters. They go together for movies and dinners and like to just chill and have fun times with each other.
Ileana’s mother was instrumental in kick starting her career. The manager of the hotel that she was working in saw Ileana and told her that Ileana had a great face and a vibrant smile and that she should become a model. He later helped fix a meeting with Marc Robinson.
Ileana was initially not sure about modeling, but her mother pursued and eventually persuaded her to give it a shot. In January 2003, she had her first portfolio made, but that was a ‘disaster’ according to Ileana. She found recognition and fame with ramp shows and photo shoots, which led her to shoot her second portfolio the next year. This allowed her to get chosen for TV commercials for big brands like Emami Talc, Electrolux, and Fair and Lovely, the last of which was shot by famed director Rakesh Roshan. It was also the ‘Fair and Lovely’ ad which caught the eye of director Y.V.S.Chowdhary who ultimately cast her as the leading lady in his 2006 Telugu movie Devadasu.
Ileana D’Cruz took Aruna Bhikshu’s acting classes before beginning the shoot of her debut as an actress. D’Cruz often recalls her experience while shooting for her debut movie. She states that it was extremely pressurizing and that she often almost cried and wanted to stop. However, her mother kept on encouraging her and even gave her lectures. She eventually completed the film which became a huge hit and garnered her the Filmfare Award for Best Female Debutant- South.
Ileana’s latest movies include “Phata Poster Nikla Hero” where she was paired with Shahid Kapoor, and “Main Tera Hero” alongside Varun Dhawan and Nargis Fakhri. Her upcoming movies include ‘Happy Ending’ with Saif Ali Khan, and Nikhil Advani directed ‘Katti Batti.’ Unlike the widespread rumor, Advani’s directorial venture is not titled ‘Saali Kutti.’
Stand on Kissing and bikini
The 1 .65 meter tall Ileana is okay with kissing scenes as long as they are integral to the script. The humble actress who tends to be self-critical considered herself unfit for bikini pictures. Nevertheless, Ileana who is blessed with a good metabolism, did oblige for bikini photos, causing a stir.
Ileana D’Cruz trivia
Ileana is a foodie. She eats almost everything, but her diet usually comprises of salads, veggies, and fruits. She regularly goes for a high-protein diet whenever she wants to tone up. D’Cruz has a bad knee and hence cannot run. But she does walk as much as she can. She does not like working out at the gym and instead prefers Pilates.
It was rumored that Ileana was dating Shahid Kapoor. However, as per reports she is currently dating an Australian photographer named Andrew Kneebone. It is rumored that Ileana’s parents also approve of the relationship.
Ileana D’Cruz photos