Sonam Kapoor is an Indian actress and a former model. She is the daughter of Indian film actor Anil Kapoor. Kapoor garnered international recognition as a spokesperson for the French beauty brand L'Oréal.
Kapoor made her acting debut in 2007 in Sanjay Leela Bhansali's Saawariya opposite Ranbir Kapoor and subsequently featured in the offbeat drama Delhi-6 (2009). She earned her first commercial success with the romantic comedy I Hate Luv Storys (2010), and followed with films such as Aisha, and Mausam (2011). Whilst the former brought her acknowledgment as a fashionista and praise for her unique sense of style, the latter earned her critical appreciation for her performance.
In 2013, Kapoor received immense recognition from critics for her role in the commercially successful romantic drama Raanjhanaa, which is referred as her best performance to date. She subsequently featured in the biographical sports film Bhaag Milkha Bhaag, her second consecutive great success in 2013. Kapoor has thus established herself as one of the most popular and promising contemporary actresses in Hindi cinema.
Kapoor was born in the suburb of Chembur, Mumbai on 9 June 1985. She is the daughter of actor Anil Kapoor and ex-model Sunita Kapoor and the granddaughter of filmmaker Surinder Kapoor. The family moved to a house in the suburb of Juhu, where her parents still reside, when she was one month old. Kapoor is the eldest of three children; the others are sister Rhea Kapoor and brother Harshvardhan. She is the niece of producer Boney Kapoor, actor Sanjay Kapoor and producer Sandeep Marwah. Producer Mona Shourie Kapoor and actress Sridevi are her aunts. She is also the first cousin of actor, Arjun Kapoor, Anushala Kapoor and second cousin of actor Ranveer Singh from her mothers side.
She attended the Arya Vidya Mandir school in Juhu and then enrolled in the United World College of South East Asia, boarding school in Singapore, to do her International Baccalaureate. She studied theatre and arts in Singapore for 2 years. She also studied Political Science and Economics from University of East London. She speaks English, Hindi, Urdu, Punjabi and Marathi and is a well trained classical dancer.
Before starting her career off as an actress, Sonam and Ranbir Kapoor worked as assistant directors under Sanjay Leela Bhansali in 2004, and assisted him during the making of his film, Black which was released in early 2005.
She made her acting debut alongside newcomer, Ranbir Kapoor in Bhansali's Saawariya (2007), which failed to do well at the box office, but her performance opened to mixed to good reviews by critics. Taran Adarsh of Bollywood Hungama commented saying, "Sonam Kapoor is an average actor. However, her role doesn't give her the opportunity to display histrionics. She looks gorgeous at places, but plain ordinary at times." GlamSham.com wrote, "As for Sonam, she matches Ranbir, step for step. A gorgeous looker, she carries off her role with aplomb as the one who is looking for her love to return. Her huge eyes portray her emotions and her confidence is personified in every frame; whether she is playfully fooling around with Ranbir or anxiously looking out for her Imaan (Salman Khan) to return. It looks like these two were born to act. The chemistry between the two is awesome." Naresh K. D. of apunkachoice.com said, "Sonam, though undoubtedly gorgeous, seems ill at ease with her part. In one close-up shot just after her introduction, her face – supposed to express sadness – is completely bereft of emotion. In the second half, however, she manages to sink her teeth better into her character." Sonam had no release in 2008, although, was nominated for the Filmfare Award for Best Female Debut, though lost out to actress Deepika Padukone for Om Shanti Om, which, coincidentally was released alongside Saawariya.
In 2009, Kapoor appeared in Rakeysh Omprakash Mehra's Delhi-6, opposite Abhishek Bachchan. The film flopped at the box office and received mixed critical reviews, but her performance was praised and she received recognition from within and outside the film industry. Critic Rajeev Masand commented, "Sonam Kapoor is the revelation in Delhi 6. She's a firecracker, instinctive and uninhibited in what isn't even a conventional female lead". Sonia Chopra, film criric from Rediff commented, "Sonam Kapoor is an earnest and effortless performer so she does make you like the character somewhat, despite the typical Delhi-girl recipe".