Avantika Vandanapu

Avantika Vandanapu on How Indian women are Shining Bright in Hollywood

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Indian American actor, Avantika Vandanapu is making her mark in Hollywood with her role as Karen Shetty in the new iteration of the popular teen comedy “Mean Girls“. Currently, brown-skinned women, especially of Indian origin, have been making waves in the global entertainment industry, with their talent and beauty being recognized and celebrated on a global stage. From Priyanka Chopra Jonas in “Citadel” to Simone Ashley in “Bridgerton” and Ambika Mod in “One Day”, the list of female actors with an Indian connection is only getting longer. And now, joining this impressive lineup is 19-year-old gorgeous Indian origin girl, Avantika.

Avantika Vandanapu’s Film Journey

Avantika, who was born to an Indian family in California, made her acting debut in 2016 with the Telugu film “Brahmotsavam”. Growing up in a household that valued cinema, Avantika was inspired by films like “Matilda” and “3 Idiots”, which she describes as heartfelt portrayals of the human condition. These films sparked her interest in acting and propelled her towards pursuing a career in the entertainment industry.

In her recent interview with PTI, Avantika expressed her excitement about being a part of the legacy of Indian women making their mark in Hollywood. She believes that it was long overdue for a community of 1.5 billion people to be represented on a global stage. Avantika also credits the women who paved the way for actors like her to come up, and hopes to do the same for future generations of South Asian women.

Dream Hollywood Debut with ‘Mean Girls’

Avantika’s role as Karen in “Mean Girls” was secured through a standard audition process. Despite thinking that she had “completely bombed” her audition, she reached out to a fellow actor on social media, whom she had never met before, but had seen her work. To her surprise, she landed the role and was thrilled to be a part of the film, which is a new twist on the 2004 modern classic, directed by Samantha Jayne and Arturo Perez Jr.

Avantika as One of the “Plastics”

In the film, Avantika’s character Karen is a part of the elite group “The Plastics”, led by Regina George (played by Renee Rapp). When Cady Heron (played by Angourie Rice) joins the group, she falls for Regina’s ex-boyfriend and is at loggerheads with her. As Cady sets out to take down Regina with the help of her outcast friends Janis (played by Auli’i Cravalho) and Damian (played by Jaquel Spivey), she must learn to stay true to herself while navigating high school.

Breakthrough in Cinema with “Brahmotsavam”

Avantika’s journey in the Indian film industry has also been a memorable one. Besides “Brahmotsavam”, she has acted in Telugu films like “Premam” and “Manamantha”, and Tamil film “Boomika”. She fondly remembers her initial years in the industry, where she received support and encouragement from her co-stars Samantha Ruth Prabhu, Kajal Aggarwal, and Naga Chaitanya.

The young actor is now set to make her Hindi debut with Nitya Mehra’s Prime Video show “Big Girls Don’t Cry”. She is also working on the Disney+ series “A Crown of Wishes”. Avantika is excited about her upcoming projects and is determined to make a mark in the Indian film industry as well. However, she acknowledges the challenges that come with it, such as nepotism and colorism, and hopes to overcome them with her talent and hard work.

To wrap it all up, Avantika Vandanapu’s journey from a young girl with a passion for cinema to a rising star in Hollywood and the Indian film industry is truly inspiring. Her role in “Mean Girls” and her upcoming projects are a testament to her talent and determination. As she continues to make her mark in the entertainment industry, Avantika hopes to inspire and pave the way for future generations of South Asian women.

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