Yami Gautam Dhar (born 28 November 1988) is an Indian actress known predominantly for her work in Hindi films.[2] A daughter of Punjabi film director Mukesh Gautam, she began her career as a model,[3][4] and starred in television soap operas such as Chand Ke Paar Chalo (2008–2009) and Yeh Pyar Na Hoga Kam (2009–2010). In 2012, she had her first Hindi film release in the comedy-drama Vicky Donor, which won her the Zee Cine Award for Best Female Debut.[5][6]

Yami Gautam
Gautam in 2019
Born (1988-11-28) 28 November 1988 (age 35)
Other namesYami Gautam Dhar[1]
Occupation
  • Actress
Years active2008–present
Spouse
(m. 2021)
Parent
RelativesSurilie Gautam (sister)

Gautam had supporting roles in the thrillers Badlapur (2015) and Kaabil (2017), and greater success came for starring in the war film Uri: The Surgical Strike and the satire Bala (both 2019). She has since starred in the streaming films A Thursday (2022), Dasvi (2022), Chor Nikal Ke Bhaga (2023), OMG 2 (2023), and Article 370 (2024).

Early and personal life edit

Yami Gautam was born in a Hindu Brahmin[7] family in Bilaspur, Himachal Pradesh[3] and was brought up in Chandigarh.[8][9] Her father Mukesh Gautam is a Punjabi film director.[10] He is the VP of PTC Network.[11] Her mother is Anjali Gautam.[12] She has a younger sister Surilie Gautam, who made her big screen debut with the Punjabi film Power Cut.[13][14][15] Yami Gautam did her regular schooling, and later entered college to pursue a graduate degree in law honours. She had aspired to join Indian Administrative Service (IAS) as a young girl, but at the age of 20, she decided to venture into an acting career.[16][17] Though she was pursuing studies in Law Honors (first-year PU Student of law), she left full-time studies for acting. Recently, she has been doing her part-time graduation from Mumbai.[18][19] She is fond of reading, interior decoration and listening to music.[20][21]

In 2015, during the filming of Sanam Re, she began dating Pulkit Samrat. Though she never spoke about it, their relationship was confirmed by Samrat's wife.[22] The couple eventually broke up in 2018.[23] Gautam married Aditya Dhar on 4 June 2021.[24][25] After marriage, she changed her name to Yami Gautam Dhar.[26]

Career edit

Television career (2008–2010) edit

Gautam was 20 when she moved to Mumbai to pursue a career in movies.[27] She made her television debut in Chand Ke Paar Chalo.[28][29] She continued to play the lead in Raajkumar Aaryyan. Following this, she played her most notable role in television in, Yeh Pyar Na Hoga Kam,[30] which aired on Colors.[31] She has also participated in reality shows Meethi Choori No 1 and Kitchen Champion Season 1.[32]

Film debut and early work (2009–2018) edit

 
Gautam at an event for Vicky Donor in 2012

After making her acting debut as the lead in the 2009 Kannada-language film Ullasa Utsaha, Gautam made her Bollywood debut in a leading role in Shoojit Sircar's romantic comedy Vicky Donor (2012). Co-starring opposite debutante Ayushmann Khurrana, Annu Kapoor, and Dolly Ahluwalia, she portrayed Ashima Roy, a Bengali woman who falls in love with the titular character, a Punjabi lad from the Arora family, and gets to know about his past after their marriage.[33] The film, which marked Bollywood actor John Abraham's production debut, received positive reviews from critics and proved to be a major commercial success as one of the highest-grossing films of the year with worldwide grossing of 645 million (US$3.9 million). For her debut performance, Gautam received critical acclaim as well as several awards and nominations, including the award for Best Female Debut (tied with Ileana D'Cruz for Barfi!) at the Zee Cine Awards, and a nomination under the same category at the 58th Filmfare Awards.[34]

After a two-year absence from Bollywood films, Gautam returned in 2014 and appeared in two films, the first of which was Eeshwar Nivas' romantic comedy film Total Siyappa, co-starring Ali Zafar, Anupam Kher, and Kirron Kher, in which she played the love interest of Zafar's character.[35] Gautam's second Bollywood release that year was Prabhu Deva's action thriller Action Jackson, in which Ajay Devgn portrayed a double role while Gautam and Sonakshi Sinha were featured as the love interests of his characters. Both Total Siyappa and Action Jackson underperformed at the box office.[36][37][38]

In 2015, Gautam appeared alongside Varun Dhawan and Nawazuddin Siddiqui in Sriram Raghavan's action thriller Badlapur.[39] The film, which focuses on the story of a man named Raghu who, over the course of 15 years, avenges the murders of his wife Misha and his son, emerged as a critical and commercial success, collecting 770 million (US$11 million) worldwide, with Gautam's performance receiving praise.[40]

In 2016, Gautam played Pulkit Samrat's love interest in two romances—Divya Khosla Kumar's Sanam Re and Vivek Agnihotri's Junooniyat.[41][42] In the former, she played a high-school girl who falls in love with Samrat's character, and in the latter, she portrayed a Punjabi girl who falls in love with an army officer.[43][44] Both Sanam Re and Junooniyat were critical and commercial failures.[45]

The following year, Gautam collaborated with Hrithik Roshan on Sanjay Gupta's revengeful romantic thriller Kaabil (2017), which tells the story of a blind man who avenges the rape of his blind wife. The film, as well as her performance, received mixed-to-positive reviews, and the film emerged as a financial success, earning 1.96 billion (US$28 million) worldwide. Later in 2017, Gautam featured briefly in Ram Gopal Varma's political thriller Sarkar 3, the third installment of Varma's Sarkar franchise, alongside Amitabh Bachchan, Jackie Shroff, Manoj Bajpayee, and Amit Sadh. Sarkar 3 failed to do well at the box office. Gautam's next release was the Shree Narayan Singh directed social problem drama Batti Gul Meter Chalu (2018), in which she played a lawyer alongside Shahid Kapoor, Shraddha Kapoor, and Divyendu Sharma.[46][47][48]

Breakthrough and success (2019–present) edit

 
Gautam in 2019

Gautam's breakthrough role was in 2019 when she appeared in Aditya Dhar's military action thriller Uri: The Surgical Strike, alongside Vicky Kaushal, Paresh Rawal, Mohit Raina, and Kirti Kulhari.[49] Based on the 2016 Uri attack, Gautam portrayed Pallavi Sharma, a nurse turned intelligence officer. Upon release, the film received high critical acclaim, with Gautam's performance receiving high praise. The film emerged as the third-highest grossing Hindi film of the year, earning over 3.42 billion (US$44 million) worldwide.[50] She next reunited with Khurrana in Amar Kaushik's comedy-drama Bala, a satire on physical attractiveness, which was released on 7 November 2019. Also featuring Bhumi Pednekar, the film opened to positive reviews, with Gautam unanimously receiving acclaim for her portrayal of Pari Mishra, a ditsy Tik Toker and a part-time model hailing from Lucknow, who, upon finding out about her husband's baldness, feels cheated and leaves him.[51] Film critic Sukanya Verma found Gautam "part delirious, part deluded" in the film and felt "there's a gentle unhinged air to her compulsive, sincere artificiality that makes her both fascinating and heartbreaking"[52] and featured her in Rediff's list of the Best Bollywood Actresses in 2019.[53] Bala proved to be a commercial success with a worldwide gross of 1.7billion (US$22 million).[54]

In 2020, she appeared as Ginny in the film Ginny Weds Sunny opposite Vikrant Massey, directed by debutant Puneet Khanna and produced by Vinod Bachchan. The film was directly released on Netflix on 9 October 2020, instead of a theatrical release due to the COVID-19 pandemic.[55] Upon its release, the film received mixed reviews. In 2021, Gautam played the role of Maya in Pavan Kirpalani's horror comedy Bhoot Police, co-starring Saif Ali Khan, Arjun Kapoor, and Jacqueline Fernandez.[56] The film was met with mixed reviews. She had a special appearance as Mannat in Shava Ni Girdhari Lal.[57][58]

Gautam's first film in 2022 was Behzad Khambata's thriller A Thursday, in which she co-starred with Neha Dhupia and Atul Kulkarni.[59] Gautam was cast in the lead role of Naina Jaiswal, a playschool teacher who takes 16 children hostage. On 17 February 2022, the film premiered on Disney+ Hotstar.[60] Upon its release, the film opened to mixed-to-positive reviews, with Gautam particularly receiving positive reviews for her performance. Sneha Benganl of CNBC TV18 found it her "career's best performance" and felt Gautam as Naina was "equal parts dangerous and vulnerable, daring and conflicted."[61] Gautam's second film in 2022 was Tushar Jalota's social comedy Dasvi, alongside Abhishek Bachchan and Nimrat Kaur. Gautam was cast in the role of Jyoti Deswal, an IPS officer in the jail where Chief Minister Ganga Ram Chaudhary was imprisoned. The film premiered on Netflix and JioCinema on 7 April 2022. Upon its release, the film opened to mixed reviews.[62][63][64][65]

In 2023, Gautam appeared as the protagonist Vidhi Sahani, a crime-journalist in search of a missing man in Aniruddha Roy Chowdhary’s social drama Lost. The film had its world premiere at the Chicago South Asian Film Festival on 22 September 2022[66] and its Asian premiere at the 53rd International Film Festival of India, Goa.[67] The film premiered on ZEE5 on 16th February 2023. Zinia Bandyopadhyay of India Today felt Gautam "anchors" her character "with earnestness" and "proves her mettle again".[68] Gautam next appeared in the heist thriller Chor Nikal Ke Bhaga, where she played the role of Neha Grover, a flight attendant. Co-starring Sunny Kaushal, the film follows the story of a couple who intends to steal diamonds being smuggled on a hijacked aircraft. The film was premiered on Netflix on 24 March 2023. Upon its release, the film opened to positive reviews, with its major praise particularly for the final twist in the film and Gautam's performance. While film critic Saibal Chatterjee felt Gautam was "the one who powers the film along especially when the ride turns somewhat bumpy",[69] Monika Rawal Kukreja of Hindustan Times wrote, "Gautam truly nails her part and shines in every frame she appears in. With a lot of layers and shades to her character, she's confident."[70]

Gautam starred as a lawyer in OMG 2 (2023), a satire about sex education in India, alongside Akshay Kumar and Pankaj Tripathi.[71][72][73] It emerged as one of the highest-grossing Hindi films of the year.[74] Her performance in the film earned her a nomination for the Filmfare Award for Best Supporting Actress.[75]

In 2024, Gautam reunited with Aditya Dhar following Uri: The Surgical Strike to star in his political action thriller, Article 370.[76] Set against the backdrop of Revocation of the special status of Jammu and Kashmir, and the autonomy granted under Article 370 of the Indian Constitution to Jammu and Kashmir a region administered by India, she portrayed an intelligence offer attempting to abrogate the law.[77][78] She described the film as "one of the most important in [her] career".[79] Despite mixed reviews from critics due to the propagandist nature of the film, Gautam's performance earned praise.[80][81][82] In her review, Kukreja described Gautam as "terrific" and added that "her no-nonsense demeanor lends a gravitas to the film and she lets her action and intense dialogue delivery do most of the talking".[83]

Media image edit

Gautam has frequently featured on Times' 50 Most Desirable Women list. She ranked 12th in 2012,[84][85] 16th in 2018, 8th in 2019 and 15th in 2020.[86][87] In addition to her acting career, Gautam is a prominent celebrity endorser for brands and products including Glow & Lovely,[88] Cornetto, Chevrolet and Dollar Missy.[89][90]

Filmography edit

Key
Denotes films that have not yet been released

Films edit

Year Title Role Language Notes Ref.
2009 Ullasa Utsaha Mahalakshmi Kannada [91]
2011 Ek Noor Rabiha Punjabi [92][93]
Nuvvila Archana Telugu [94]
2012 Vicky Donor Ashima Roy Hindi [95][96]
Hero Gauri Menon Malayalam [97]
2013 Gouravam Yazhini Tamil [98]
Gouravam Yamini Telugu [98]
2014 Total Siyapaa Asha Hindi [99]
Yuddham Madhumita Telugu [100]
Action Jackson Anusha Hindi [101]
2015 Badlapur Misha Verma [102][103]
Courier Boy Kalyan Kavya Telugu [104]
2016 Sanam Re Shruti Hindi [105]
Junooniyat Suhani Kapoor [106][107]
Tamilselvanum Thaniyar Anjalum Kavya Tamil [108][109]
2017 Kaabil Supriya Bhatnagar Hindi [110][111]
Sarkar 3 Annu Karkare [112][113][114]
2018 Batti Gul Meter Chalu Advocate Gulnaar Rizvi [115][116][117]
2019 Uri: The Surgical Strike Pallavi Sharma / Jasmine Almeida [118][119][120]
Bala Pari Mishra [121]
2020 Ginny Weds Sunny Simran 'Ginny' Juneja [55]
2021 Bhoot Police Maya "Mayu" Kulbhushan [122]
Shava Ni Girdhari Lal Mannat Punjabi Cameo appearance [123]
2022 A Thursday Naina Jaiswal Hindi [124][125]
Dasvi IPS Jyoti Deswal [126]
2023 Lost Vidhi Sahani [127]
Chor Nikal Ke Bhaga Neha Grover [128]
OMG 2 Advocate Kamini Maheshwari [129]
2024 Article 370 Zooni Haksar [79][76]

Television edit

Year Title Role Notes
2008–2009 Chand Ke Paar Chalo Sana [130]
2008 Raajkumar Aaryyan Rajkumari Bhairvi [131]
2010 CID Ananya Episode "Kabarwali Ladki" [132][133]
2009–2010 Yeh Pyar Na Hoga Kam Leher Mathur Vajpayee [134]
2010 Meethi Choori No 1 Contestant [135]
Kitchen Champion Season 1[135]

Awards and nominations edit

Year Award Category Film Result Ref.
2012 Gold Awards Rising Film Stars From TV Vicky Donor Won [136]
People's Choice Awards India Favorite Debut Actor (Male/Female) Nominated [137]
BIG Star Entertainment Awards Most Entertaining Actor (Film) Debut – Female Won [138]
2013 ETC Bollywood Business Awards Most Profitable Debut (Female) Nominated [139]
Filmfare Awards Best Female Debut Nominated [140]
Screen Awards Most Promising Newcomer – Female Nominated [141]
Zee Cine Awards Best Female Debut Won [142]
Stardust Awards Best Actress Nominated [143]
Superstar of Tomorrow – Female Nominated [143]
Star Guild Awards Best Female Debut Nominated [144]
Times of India Film Awards Best Debut – Female Nominated [145]
International Indian Film Academy Awards Star Debut of the Year – Female Won [146]
2020 Screen Awards Best Comedian Bala Won [147]
International Indian Film Academy Awards Best Supporting Actress Nominated [148][149]
Zee Cine Awards Best Performance in a Comic Role Nominated
2022 Filmfare OTT Awards Best Actor in a Web Original Film (Female) A Thursday Nominated [150]
International Indian Film Academy Awards Best Actress Nominated [151]
2023 Filmfare OTT Awards Best Actress in a Web Original Film Lost Nominated [152]
2024 Filmfare Awards Best Supporting Actress OMG 2 Nominated [153]

See also edit

References edit

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