Priyanka Chopra participated in the Miss India competition at the age of 17 and emerged as the runner up – Femina Miss India World 2000. She is a successful actor, singer and producer.
In the book by Aseem Chhabra, Priyanka Chopra: The Incredible Story of a Global Bollywood Star, Pradeep Guha who was one of the mentors of the contestants in the year 2000 recalled how one jury member was uncertain about Priyanka due to her skin color.
He said, “Not everybody in the jury was initially in favour of her. One person mentioned she’s too dark,” further adding, “I said, ‘Yaar come on — look at South American girls. They keep winning and some of them are pretty dark as are all the girls from Africa. So I said what are you talking about? ‘I was always very certain about her and as I said this woman never made a mistake twice.”
The judges that year included actors Shah Rukh Khan, Juhi Chawla and Waheeda Rehman, Mohammed Azharuddin, film producer Pritish Nandy, painter Anjolie Ela Menon, Subhash Chandra, fashion designer Carolina Herrera and Marcus Swarovski.
“She kind of always improved on herself day on day, day on day. I knew that she would give in 200 per cent if she gets in,” Guha added in the book by Aseem Chhabra.
“I think she needed a little more confidence. I think she wasn’t quite sure initially whether this was the thing she wanted to do. She came in a bit tentatively. By the time the contest started she seemed a lot more collected and definitely more confident of herself,” Guha added.
Now she is known for setting style trends in Bollywood, the former Miss World tries to be unique whenever she attends any event. For her style is always a representation of what one wants to wear but doing it in a unique way and expressing oneself.