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Isha Koppikar (born 19 September 1976) is an Indian actress, politician and model who has appeared in Hindi, Tamil, Telugu, Kannada, and Marathi films.[1]

Isha Koppikar
Eesha Koppikhar3.jpg
Isha Koppikar in 2013
Born (1976-09-19) 19 September 1976 (age 43)
Other namesIshaa Koppikar
Eesha Koppikhar
OccupationActress, Model
Years active1998–2014; 2017-present
Political partyBharatiya Janata Party
Timmy Narang (m. 2009)
ChildrenRianna Narang (b. 2014)


Koppikar was born in 1976 at Mahim, Bombay (now Mumbai) in a Konkani family of Mangalorean descent.[2] She has one younger brother. She graduated in Life Sciences at Ramnarain Ruia College in Mumbai. While at college she appeared in a photoshoot for Indian photographer Gautam Rajadhyaksha. The shoot led to work in advertising as a model, notably for L'Oréal, Rexona, Camay, Tips & Toes and Coca-Cola. Koppikar competed in the 1995 Miss India contest, winning the Miss Talent Crown.[3] Her modelling work gave her an introduction to the film industry and to her first film appearance in the Telugu movie Chandralekha in 1998.[3]

Film careerEdit

Debut in South India (1998–2001)Edit

The 1997 Hindi film Ek Tha Dil Ek Thi Dhadhkan, directed by Shahrukh Sultan, is often stated to be Koppikar's first film, but there is no evidence the project was ever released.[3] Her career must therefore be said to have begun with the 1998 Telugu film Chandralekha, co-starring alongside Nagarjuna, and directed by Krishna Vamsi, with music by Maestro Sandeep Chowta. She was awarded the Filmfare Best Female Debut AwardHer first movie in Tamil was Kadhal kavidhai against Prashanth . Continuing her Tamil film career, Koppikar's second movie was En Swasa Kaatre in 1998, opposite Arvind Swamy, directed by K. S. Ravi, with music by renowned music director A. R. Rahman. 1998 saw a third film, this time a cameo appearance in Praveen Gandhi's Jodi, starring Prashanth and Simran.

In 1999, Koppikar alternated between appearances in the Telugu comedy Chandralekha, co-starring Nagarjuna and Ramya Krishnan, directed by Krishna Vamshi; and the Tamil gangland movie Nenjinile, starring Vijay and directed by S. A. Chandrasekhar.

By 2000, Koppikar's sights were on Bollywood, but this did not stop her from appearing in three Kannada films: Hoo Anthiya Uhoo Anthiya with Ramesh and directed by Praveen Naik, with music by Karthik Raja; O Nanna Nalle, starring and directed by Ravichandran; and finally Surya Vamsha, directed by S Narayan and starring Vishnuvardhan in a double role as father and son. Both O Nanna Nalle and Surya Vamsha were box office successes.[4]

After a detour to Mumbai for a brief appearance in Fiza and an item number in Rahul, Koppikar returned to the south in 2001 for Sundar C's Tamil project Kaathal Solla Vanthen. This film however never left the development stage, although a soundtrack of the same name was made available. Koppikar's penultimate South Indian role was in the Telugu comedy Prematho Raa, starring Venkatesh and Simran, and directed by Uday Shankar, and she signed off her South Indian career with the Tamil action movie Narasimha, directed by Thirupathisamy and starring Vijayakanth.

Bollywood (2000–2008)Edit

Taking time out from four Kannada films in 2000, Koppikar appeared alongside Karisma Kapoor and Hrithik Roshan in Khalid Mohamed's Fiza. An item number appearance in Prakash Jha's Rahul completed Koppikar's introduction to Hindi film. Brief returns to South India in 2001 were coupled with Koppikar's proper Bollywood debut in a small supporting role in Rajiv Rai's Pyaar Ishq Aur Mohabbat, starring Arjun Rampal and Sunil Shetty. Koppikar was paired with Shetty in the film. Her next release was K. Raghavendra Rao's urban comedy Aamdani Atthani Kharcha Rupaiyaa, opposite Govinda, Juhi Chawla and Johnny Lever. By 2002, Koppikar appeared to be consigned to support roles until she was asked by Ram Gopal Varma to appear in an item number for his underworld movie Company starring Ajay Devgan, Vivek Oberoi and Manisha Koirala. The number in question was Khallas, choreographed by Ganesh Hegde and the effect on cinema audiences and critics was to leave her with the enduring nickname Khallas Girl. A second notable item number, Ishq Samundar, in Sanjay Gupta's Reservoir Dogs remake Kaante, starring Amitabh Bachchan, Sanjay Dutt and Sunil Shetty, was enough to raise her profile and in the following year she took the Stardust Award for Most Exciting New Face for Khallas.

Isha Koppikar walks the ramp for designer Pria Kataria Puri

Koppikar's career produced five films in 2003. In Dil Ka Rishta, directed by Naresh Malhotra, she played opposite Arjun Rampal and Aishwarya Rai, marking Koppikar's second appearance with Rampal. Prawaal Raman's portmanteau film Darna Mana Hai saw her alongside college whipping boy Aftab Shivdasani. Chandraprakash Dwivedi cast her alongside Urmila Matondkar and Manoj Bajpai in the critically acclaimed film Pinjar, which went on to win the National Film Award for Best Feature Film on National Integration.[5] A brief appearance in J. P. Dutta's war movie LOC Kargil paired her opposite Sunil Shetty again. And in Harry Baweja's Qayamat: City Under Threat, she played one of three terrorists fighting off co-stars Ajay Devgan and Sunil Shetty; a role which would bring her a Filmfare nomination in the Best Villain category.[6]

In 2004, Koppikar's films were releasing on average every two months. Both Mani Shankar's science fantasy Rudraksh and Kundan Shah's madcap comedy Ek Se Bhadkhar Ek teamed her next to perennial acting partner Sunil Shetty. In Krishna Cottage, she was cast opposite Sohail Khan for Santram Varma's creepy ghost story. Inteqam, directed by Pankaj Parashar and co-starring Manoj Bajpai, saw her revive the role played by Sharon Stone in the original Hollywood version: Basic Instinct. Another cameo appearance in Kunal Kohli's Hum Tum with Saif Ali Khan and Rani Mukerji could have left a comedy taste to 2004, but this would be the year of street protests following Karan Razdan's controversial Girlfriend, co-starring Amrita Arora and Aashish Chaudhary caught in a lesbian love triangle. The film provoked public poster burning and calls for the film to be banned.[7]

In 2005, she eased up somewhat only releasing four films. Sangeeth Sivan's bawdy comedy Kyaa Kool Hai Hum, with Anupam Kher, Ritesh Deshmukh and Tusshar Kapoor saw her nominated in three separate award ceremonies (IIFA, Zee Cine Award and Star Screen Awards) for best comedy role.[8] Two more comedies saw her make guest appearances: David Dhawan's Salman Khan vehicle Maine Pyaar Kyun Kiya?, and Abbas-Mustan's whodunit, 36 China Town with Akshaye Khanna and Kareena Kapoor. A return to Ram Gopal Varma's Factory saw her alongside Chunky Pandey in Vishram Sawant's gangster flick D: Underworld Badhshah, starring Randeep Hooda.

Farhan Akhtar directed a 2006 remake of the Amitabh Bachchan hit Don: The Chase Begins Again, this time with Shahrukh Khan in the lead. Koppikar was cast as Khan's girlfriend 'Anita'. But Don's tremendous success came in contrast to Koppikar's stuttering career, with a string of films stuck in production or abandoned. Vicky Ranawat's Haseena Smart Sexy and Dangerous crept out towards the end of 2006, but Jagdish A Sharma's murder mystery Gahraee[9] appeared directly on DVD while Hansal Mehta's Raakh and Jahnu Barua's Har Pal were shelved. Ram Gopal Varma's much discussed Shabri, directed by Lalit Marathe -a role which led her to being unrecognised and barred from the film set by security personnel[6]- struggled to attract a distributor.

Koppikar's highest profile film of 2007, Nikhil Advani's multi-starrer Salaam-e-Ishq, saw her sharing limited screen time with Sohail Khan. Later in the year came the haunted love triangle of Ram Gopal Varma's Darling, with Fardeen Khan and Esha Deol. Koppikar's first film release of 2008 was Atul Agnihotri's Hello, based on the best-selling novel One Night @ the Call Center by Chetan Bhagat. This was followed within weeks by Ek Vivaah... Aisa Bhi, a Rajshri Production directed by Khashik Ghatak and co-starring Sonu Sood.

After her wedding (2009–)Edit

Koppikar did not appear in any film in 2009, the year of her wedding with Timmy Narang. She had two films released in 2010: Right Yaaa Wrong by Neeraj Pathak and Manoj Tiwari's Hello Darling. Both films fared poorly at the box office.[10][11]

Shabri, where she plays a woman gangster of Mumbai, was eventually released in 2011.[12] Her performance was praised but the film only had a limited release and failed to make an impact at the box office.[13][14] In 2013, she made her Marathi debut in Maat, a film by director Manohar Sarvankar. She played the lead role opposite Sameer Dharmadhikari in a story revolving around an ambitious couple.

She has been announced in a Kannada film, Looti, where she is to play a police officer,[15] as well as in a Hindi movie directed by Ankur Bhatia co-starring Divyendu Sharma.[16][17]

Other worksEdit

Between filming Koppikar, like many Bollywood actors, performs in stage music shows. In addition to this she has appeared in two music videos: Patli Kamar by KK for a private album commissioned by Sony in 2001/2002; and Bandish Projekt's Bhor (Satyam Shivam Sundaram) in 2004, choreographed by Bosco-Caesar. In 2006 she appeared onstage in the Indian Idol Grand Final to dance with the two finalists, and 2007 saw her as one of three judges in the celebrity dance competition Nach Baliye3, alongside director David Dhawan and Vaibhavi Merchant. She had also owned a restaurant back in 2015. She served as a judge in the Miss Universe 2008 contest, held on 14 July in Vietnam alongside, amongst others, fashion designer Roberto Cavalli and former winner in 2004 Jennifer Hawkins. In August 2009, she presented the new Colors wrestling show 100% De Dana Dan.

She continues to model for fashion designers Anita Dongre and Pria Kataria Puri. In 2007, she became the Indian brand ambassador of the Italian fashion company Police Time and Jewellery.[18] Koppikar is also a spokesperson for the animal rights organisation PETA[19] and received the 10th Anniversary Humanitarian Award in December 2009.[20]

Personal lifeEdit

Isha Koppikar with Timmy Narang at their wedding reception

She has a black-belt in Taekwondo.[21]

Following the advice of numerologists, she has changed the spelling of her name twice, first to Ishaa Koppikar and later to Eesha Koppikhar. However, as of 2015 she has reverted to the original spelling of her name.[16]

Leena Mogre and Preity Zinta introduced her to hotelier Timmy Narang,[22] whom she married on 29 November 2009.[23]

She gave birth to their daughter Rianna in July 2014.[24][25][26][27]

Political CareerEdit

She joined the Bharatiya Janata Party in the presence of Union minister Nitin Gadkari. She has been appointed as the working president of the BJP's women transport wing.[28]


  Denotes films that have not yet been released
Years Title Role Language Notes
1998 Chandralekha Lekha Telugu
Kaadhal Kavithai Jothi Tamil Filmfare Best Female Debut (Tamil)
1999 En Swasa Kaatre Madhu
Nenjinile Nisha
Jodi Herself Cameo appearance
2000 Surya Vamsha Padma Kannada
Hoo Anthiya Uhoo Anthiya
O Nanna Nalle Rangu
Fiza Gitanjali Hindi
2001 Prematho Raa Swetha Telugu
Narasimha Vaanmathi Tamil
Rahul Hindi Special appearance
Pyaar Ishq Aur Mohabbat Rubaina Alam
Aamdani Atthanni Kharcha Rupaiya Anjali
2002 Company Special appearance
Kaante Special appearance
2003 Pinjar Rajjo
Dil Ka Rishta Anita
Qayamat: City Under Threat Laila
Darna Mana Hai Abhilasha
LOC Kargil Santho
2004 Rudraksh Lali
Krishna Cottage Disha (Ghost) and Amar's girlfriend
Hum Tum Diana Fernandez Special Appearance
Girlfriend Tanya
Ek Se Badhkar Ek Tracy/Shalini Mathur
Inteqam: The Perfect Game Avantika Suryavansh/Pinky
2005 Kyaa Kool Hai Hum Urmila Martodkar
D Gunjan
Maine Pyaar Kyun Kiya? Nishika (Vicky's girlfriend)
2006 Darna Zaroori Hai Appears in a Darna Mana Hai flashback
36 China Town Sonia Chang
Don Anita
Haseena Haseena
2007 Salaam-e-Ishq: A Tribute to Love Phoolwati
Darling Ashwini
2008 Hello Esha
Ek Vivaah... Aisa Bhi Chandini Shrivastava
Rab Ne Bana Di Jodi Dance Master Special Appearance
2010 Right Yaaa Wrong Anshita
Hello Darling Satvati Chaudary
2011 Shabri Shabri
2013 Maat Marathi Debut Marathi movie
2017 Keshava Sharmila Mishra Telugu
FU: Friendship Unlimited Sheena Mam Marathi
2018 Looty ACP Bhavani Kannada
2019 Kavacha Police Officer
Assi Nabbe Poorey Sau  Nithya Hindi Post-production


Awards and nominationsEdit

List of acting awards and nominations
Year Film Award Category Result
1998 Kaadhal Kavithai Filmfare Awards Filmfare Best Female Debut (Tamil) Won
2003 Company Stardust Award Stardust Award for Most Exciting New Face Won
2004 Dil Ka Rishta Asian Network Film Awards Best Supporting Actress Nominated[29]
2004 Qayamat: City Under Threat Filmfare Awards Best Villain Nominated[6]
2005 Kyaa Kool Hai Hum Annual Central European Bollywood Awards Best Supporting Actress Nominated[30]
2006 Kyaa Kool Hai Hum Zee Cine Award Zee Cine Award for Best Actor in a Comic Role Nominated[8]
2006 Kyaa Kool Hai Hum IIFA Award IIFA Award for Best Performance in a Comic Role Nominated[8]
2006 Kyaa Kool Hai Hum Screen Award Screen Award for Best Comedian Nominated[8]

Music videosEdit

Music and music videosEdit

Year Album Song Singer
2002 Bandish Projekt Bhor Remix Bandish Projekt
2004 Sweet Honey Mix Bhor Remix Smita


  1. ^ "A platinum love story: Isha Koppikar & Timmy Narang".
  2. ^ "News headlines". Retrieved 14 December 2016.
  3. ^ a b c "Interview With Ishaa Koppikar". Retrieved 6 June 2012.
  4. ^ "Isha Koppikar back to Kannada films". 27 September 2013. Retrieved 13 October 2015.
  5. ^ "51st National Film Awards" (PDF). Directorate of Film Festivals. Retrieved 15 March 2012.
  6. ^ a b c "IOL Tonight". Retrieved 14 December 2016.
  7. ^ "More protests against 'Girlfriend'". IndiaGlitz. 16 June 2004. Retrieved 6 June 2012.
  8. ^ a b c d "Eesha Koppikhar | Videos, Wallpapers, Movies, Photos, Biography". Bollywood Hungama. Retrieved 6 June 2012.
  9. ^ "I'm going to be a super-star someday!". 26 September 2005. Retrieved 15 October 2015.
  10. ^ "'It's About Publicity, Not Talent Now,' Says Sunny Deol". 17 April 2011. Retrieved 13 October 2015.
  11. ^ "New Hindi film releases tank at the box office". 30 August 2010. Retrieved 13 October 2015.
  12. ^ "Eesha Koppikar: I am pregnant with Shabri". 23 August 2011. Retrieved 6 June 2012.
  13. ^ "Eesha, RGV Miffed About Shabri Release". 26 August 2011. Retrieved 12 October 2015.
  14. ^ "Shabri fares poorly at box office". 29 August 2011. Retrieved 12 October 2015.
  15. ^ "EXCLUSIVE: Isha Koppikar Speaks About 'Looti'". 30 March 2015. Retrieved 13 October 2015.
  16. ^ a b "Isha Koppikar to Make Comeback to Hindi Films With 'Saangli'". 28 July 2015. Retrieved 13 October 2015.
  17. ^ "Khallas Girl Isha Koppikar Making a Comeback With This Film". 29 July 2015. Retrieved 13 October 2015.
  18. ^ "Isha Koppikar is brand ambassador for Italian label 'Police'". 10 July 2007. Retrieved 11 October 2015.
  19. ^ "Features". Retrieved 6 June 2012.
  20. ^ "Star shower at PETA's anniversary". Hindustan Times. 18 December 2009. Retrieved 6 June 2012.
  21. ^ [1]
  22. ^ "Preity helped Isha Koppikar find soulmate - - Masala! - Bollywood Gossip News, Indian Celebrities and Pictures". Masala!. 10 October 2008. Retrieved 14 December 2016.
  23. ^ "Isha Koppikar`s dream wedding". Retrieved 14 December 2016.
  24. ^ "Isha Koppikar welcomes baby girl". Retrieved 14 December 2016.
  25. ^ "Isha Koppikar Narang delivers a baby girl". Retrieved 14 December 2016.
  26. ^ [2]
  27. ^ [3]
  28. ^ Bollywood actor Isha Koppikar joins BJP, to head women transport wing
  29. ^
  30. ^

External linksEdit