Neena Gupta (Hindi: नीना गुप्ता; born 4 June 1959) is an Indian actress and television director. Known for her work in both art-house and commercial films, she won the National Film Award for Best Supporting Actress for playing a young widow in Woh Chokri (1994). In 2018, she gained wide recognition for starring as a middle-aged pregnant woman in the comedy-drama Badhaai Ho, for which she won the Filmfare Critics Award for Best Actress and received a nomination for the Filmfare Award for Best Actress.
Neena Gupta at Nishka Lulla and Masaba's designs preview at Oakwood Premier
|Education||Delhi University, National School of Drama|
|Occupation||Actress, television director|
Early life and education
Neena Gupta was born in New Delhi to R.N.Gupta and attended the Lawrence School, Sanawar. Gupta did her Master's Degree and M.Phil. in Sanskrit, and is an alumnus of National School of Drama, New Delhi.
Gupta has made appearances in several international films, such as Gandhi (1982), in which she played the niece of Mahatma Gandhi, and Merchant Ivory films, The Deceivers (1988), Mirza Ghalib (1989) In Custody (1993), and Cotton Mary (1999). She also made an impression in Indian parallel cinema such as Mandi (1983), Rihaee (1988), Drishti (1990) and Suraj Ka Satvan Ghoda (1992). These performances further established her profile in Indian movies alongside her arthouse film contemporaries Rekha, Shabana Azmi, Smita Patil and Dimple Kapadia. Despite this, Gupta never had a major commercial hit and found it difficult to find more dramatic roles: "I made a few mistakes in the beginning of my career. I didn't have anybody to guide me. I didn't have a secretary. I didn't call up directors, or meet people asking for roles. Also, because of the media, there is a perception that I am a strong woman. Unfortunately, in our society, that goes against you. So, I got negative, vampish roles only. Plain and simple female roles never come my way because of my image, which is very wrong. My personal life got typecast into my professional life."
Her appearance in Hindi movies was especially noted in the satirical movie, Jaane Bhi Do Yaaro in which she played the role of a secretary to Pankaj Kapoor. She also starred along with Madhuri Dixit in Khalnayak (1993); she was featured in the popular song "Choli Ke Peeche" in the movie. She has made television movies, Lajwanti and Bazar Sitaram (1993), which won the 1993 National Film Award for Best First Non-Feature Film. In 1994, Gupta's breakthrough came in the acclaimed drama Woh Chokri as a recently widowed daughter-in-law; this performance won her a National Film Award for Best Supporting Actress.
In 2017, Gupta made headlines when she shared a post on Instagram asking for work: "I live in Mumbai and working as a good actor looking for good parts to play." Fed up with the lack of roles being written for middle-aged women in Bollywood, Gupta later reflected, "After that Instagram post, I got many offers -- five, in fact, and I accepted all of them. There is no shame in saying you don't have work." One of the offers she accepted was Amit Sharma's comedy-drama Badhaai Ho (2018), which emerged as the 9th highest-grossing Bollywood film of 2018. Her performance as a middle-aged pregnant mother earned widespread critical acclaim, with various critics and publications citing her performance as the film's highlight and one of the best of her career. Rajeev Masand credited Gupta for bringing "real empathy" to the part, while Saibal Chatterjee of NDTV described her portrayal as "outstandingly measured." Acting opposite Ayushmann Khurana as her son, Gupta received various accolades for her performance including the Filmfare Critics Award for Best Actress, the Screen Award for Best Actress (Critics), and the BFJA Award for Best Supporting Actor - Female. At 60, she became the second-eldest Best Actress nominee in Filmfare Award history after Sharmila Tagore.
Her big break on television came with Khandaan (1985), Yatra (1986), Gulzar's Mirza Ghalib (1987), a TV miniseries, followed by Shyam Benegal's Bharat Ek Khoj (1988) and later Dard (1994), Gumraah (1995), Shrimaan Shrimati (1995), Saans, Saat Phere: Saloni Ka Safar (2005), Chitthi (2003), Meri Biwi Ka Jawab Nahin (2004). She has also acted in the TV serial, Buniyaad.
She has directed successful TV series, such as Saans (1999), Siski in (2000) and Kyun Hota Hai Pyarrr. She played the role of Shubha, one of the four women main leads in Ladies Special, a daily soap on Sony TV. She is now seen in Dil se Diya Vachan as a doctor by profession and mother-in-law of the lead character Nandani which airs on Zee TV
She also ran a theater production company, 'Sahaj Productions' with actor, Rajendra Gupta, and acted as well as produced the Hindi play Soorya Ki Antim Kiran Se Soorya Ki Paheli Kiran Tak. She has also had some roles in Rishtey which was aired on Zee TV during 1999-2000.
She was in a highly publicised relationship with former West Indian cricketer Vivian Richards in the 1980s, with whom she has a daughter, Masaba Gupta, a designer. Neena never married Richards and chose to raise Masaba as a single-mother in India. It was at that time she chose to move the family from New Delhi to Mumbai. On 15 July 2008, Neena married New Delhi-based Vivek Mehra, a chartered accountant and Partner with PwC India in a secret ceremony in the United States.
|Denotes films/shows/series that have not yet been released|
|1982||Aadat Se Majboor|
|1983||Jaane Bhi Do Yaaron||as Priya|
|1988||The Deceivers||as Gopal's Wife|
|1991||Vasthuhara||as Damayanthi||Malayalam film|
|1992||Zulm Ki Hukumat||as Yeshwant's wife|
|1992||The Seventh Horse of the Sun||Satti|
|1992||Yalgaar||as Kaushalya Kumar|
|1992||Kal Ki Awaz||Mrs. Fahmida Nooruddin Ahmed|
|1993||Suraj Ka Satvan Ghoda|
|1993||Phir Teri Kahani Yaad Aayee||as Street Singer||(in song "Shayarana Si Hai Zindagi")|
|1993||Bhagavad Gita (film)||as Drupadi||National Film Award for Best Feature Film|
|1993||Aankhen||Chief minister's wife||(uncredited)|
|1994||Woh Chokri||National Film Award for Best Supporting Actress|
|1994||Eena Meena Deeka|
|1994||Sone Ki Sita|
|1994||Anth||Mrs. Vikas Saxena|
|1994||In Custody||as Sarla|
|1995||Dushmani: A Violent Love Story|
|1997||Uff! Yeh Mohabbat||as Billo|
|1997||Jeeo Shaan Se|
|1999||Cotton Mary||Blossom (Mary's sister)|
|2002||Raat Ke Saudagar|
|2004||Meri Biwi Ka Jawab Nahin||as Savitri|
|2009||Teree Sang||as Paaki M. Puri|
|2009||The White Elephant|
|2010||Na Ghar Ke Na Ghaat Ke||Mrs. S. Tripathi|
|2010||Chhevan Dariya (The Sixth River)||Gurjeet Kaur|
|2012||Mere Dost Picture Abhi Baaki Hai||as Mymmyji|
|2015||Alone||as Sanjana's Mother|
|2018||Veere Di Wedding||Mrs. Sharma|
|2018||Badhaai Ho||Priyamvada Kaushik||Filmfare Critics Award for Best Actress|
Nominated –Filmfare Award for Best Actress
|2019||The Last Color||Noor|
|2020||Shubh Mangal Zyada Saavdhan
- Khandaan (1985)
- Drishti (1990)
- Yatra (1986)
- Bharat Ek Khoj (1988)
- Gul Gulshan Gulfaam (1988)
- Daddy (1989)
- Muhafiz (1993)
- Junoon (1994)
- Saans (1999) (Actor & Director)
- Siski (2000)
- Daane Anaar Ke (2002)
- Kyun Hota Hai Pyarrr (2004)
- Jassi Jaissi Koi Nahin (2004)
- Saat Phere (2005)
- Kitani Mohabbat Hai (2009)
- Ladies Special (2009)
- Dil Se Diya Vachan (2010–2011)
- Khujli (2017)
- Kehne Ko Humsafar Hain (Web series) (2018) (Writer)
- Made in Heaven (2019)
Awards and nominations
|1993||Bazaar Sitaram||National Film Awards||Best First Non-Feature Film||Won|
|1994||Woh Chokri||Best Supporting Actress||Won|
|1999||Saans||Screen Awards||Best Actress (Television)||Won|
|2019||Badhaai Ho||Screen Awards||Best Actress (Critics)||Won|
|Lions Gold Awards||Best Actor In Comic Role (Female)||Won|
|Zee Cine Awards||Best Extraordinary couple of the year (shared with Gajraj Rao)||Won|
|Filmfare Awards||Best Actress||Nominated|
|Best Actress (Critics)||Won|
|News18 Reel Movie Awards||Best Actress||Nominated|
|2019||The Last Color||India International Film Festival of Boston||Best Actress||Won|
- "Nominations for the 64th Vimal Filmfare Awards 2019". Filmfare. 12 March 2019. Retrieved 13 March 2019.
- "My Acting Career Suffered Because of My Public Image, Says Badhaai Ho Actress Neena Gupta". News18. 17 February 2019. Retrieved 13 March 2019.
- "Winners of the 64th Vimal Filmfare Awards 2019". Filmfare. 23 March 2019. Retrieved 23 March 2019.
- Bold and dutiful MALA KUMAR, The Hindu, 16 December 2005.
- Nisheeth Sharan’s "Grillopollis" hosts Sanawar’s reunion over its first preview dated 23 October 2010 at glamgold.com, accessed 11 March 2012
- "The Tribune...Sunday Reading". www.tribuneindia.com.
- "Neena Gupta: I want to tell all women that if you want to live in India and in society, you have to marry – Times of India". The Times of India. Retrieved 22 March 2018.
- "Neena Gupta gets married". DNA India. 24 July 2008.
- Neena Gupta thrilled with marriage, but says "Masaba is priority" Sify.com, IANS, 29 July 2008.
- Neena Gupta opens up... TANVI TRIVEDI, TNN, The Times of India, 22 November 2008.
- Desk, India.com Entertainment (13 October 2017). "Neena Gupta On Masaba Mantena's Open Letter : I'm Very Happy With Her Response And Liked The Way She Wrote It". India.com. Retrieved 22 March 2018.
- "41st National Film Awards". International Film Festival of India. Retrieved 3 March 2012.
- "41st National Film Awards (PDF)" (PDF). Directorate of Film Festivals. Retrieved 3 March 2012.
- "Award Winners". Screen. Archived from the original on 22 October 1999. Retrieved 2 October 2019.
- "Star Screen Awards 2018 | Winners". Hindustan Times.
- "Lions Gold Awards 2019 | Winners List". Times Now.
- "Zee Cine Awards 2019: Full list of winners out".
- "Nominations for the 64th Vimal Filmfare Awards 2019 | filmfare.com". www.filmfare.com. Retrieved 14 March 2019.
- "Nominations FOR Reel movie Awards 2019". News18. Retrieved 18 March 2019.
- "Won FOR Indian International Film Festival of Boston 2019". ABPLIVE. Retrieved 17 September 2019.