18 December 2015Bajirao Mastani
Model-turned-actor Milind Soman, is best remembered for the music video “Made In India”. The actor, who follows a strict health regime, recently made India proud by completing the Ironman Challenge, held in Zurich. Born to Prabhakar Soman, a scientist and his wife Usha, a biochemist, Milind Soman spent the first seven years of his life in Scotland, where he was born, and in London. He grew up with his three sisters - Netra, Medha and Anupama in the Maharashtrian Chitpavan Brahmin family. After returning to Mumbai, he studied at Antonio De Silva School. All throughout school, Soman was an active participant in sports and focussed on swimming. After school, he enrolled at the Saboo Sidique College for a course in electrical engineering. He established the event management company, Lotus and Bee, with Neerja Shah, after college. One of their biggest shows was a multimedia show, written by Gulzar and featuring stalwarts like Zakir Hussain, Jagjit Singh, Amjad Ali Khan and Birju Maharaj. In 1984, Milind won the national swimming championship title, and went on to win the same for the next three years. He forayed into modelling with an assignment for Thakersay Fabrics in 1989. His looks and poise earned him much recognition throughout the nation and he was tagged as a supermodel. He made his debut as an actor in 1996, with the first English soap in India, A Mouthful of Sky. Subsequently, he started his own production house, with Parvati Balagopalan. In 1995, he starred in Alisha Chinai's hit music video, Made in India. The video brought him to the limelight and he gained a vast fan following. In the meanwhile, he also starred in serials like Captain Vyom, Noor Jahan and Tanha. He also produced television soaps like Hubahu and Margarita. Soman stepped into Bollywood with the film Tarkieb (2000). His film, 16 December (2002) was a hit after commercially unsuccessful films like Agni Varsha (2002) and Pyaar Ki Dhun (2002). In 2003, he produced his first film, Rules: Pyaar ka Superhit Formula. Over the years, he has appeared in films like Jurm (2005), Say Salaam India (2007), Bheja Fry (2007), Bhram (2008), Nakshatra (2010), Jodi Breakers (2012) and David (2013). He will be seen in the upcoming Sanjay Leela Bhansali film, Bajirao Mastani, which is slated to release on 18th December, 2015. Milind has also been a part of Tamil, Marathi and Swedish films. Apart from films, he has endorsed the brand Old Spice. The health conscious actor has been a part of many marathons and has raised awareness about various health issues. He earned a place in the Limca Book of Records for running 1500 kms in 30 days for NDTV’s initiative, Greenathon, which aims to spread awareness about environmental issues. Milind is also the brand ambassador of Pinkathon, India’s largest women only running event, which promotes good health among women and aims to spread awareness about breast cancer. In more recent times, Milind has completed the Ironman challenge, which includes 3.8 kms swimming, 180.2 kms cycling and 42.2 kms running, without a break. Milind, who attempted this for the first time, completed the challenge in 15 hours and 19 minutes. The model-turned-actor also had his share of controversies when he posed nude for a photo shoot for Tuff shoes, along with model Madhu Sapre. After 14 years, the cases filed against them were dismissed. He dated Madhu Sapre for a long time but the couple split up. Soman married French actress Mylene Jampanoi in 2006, but the marriage ended in a divorce in 2009.