Yesteryear Bollywood actress Poonam Dhillon was known for her elegance and beauty, as much as she was for her acting prowess. Who can forget her charm in the movie Noorie or the innocent survivor in Red Rose? She was one of the first generations of beauty queens, who made the transition from beauty pageants to movies along with Zeenat Aman and Parveen Babi. Poonam was the winner of the Femina Miss India in 1977 at the age of 16 and that title changed her life forever. You will be surprised to know that Poonam had no intention of becoming an actress. Many of her contemporaries have stories of struggle, where they arrived in Mumbai with dreams of becoming an actress and faced obstacles to achieve fame. Such was not the case with Poonam.
Poonam, in fact, wanted to become a doctor and her family wished for the same. She completed her studies at Chandigarh Carmel Convent High School and won a beauty pageant while she was still in school. She intended to study to be a doctor, but fate had something different in store for her. Her Miss India win brought her to the notice of filmmaker Yash Chopra, who, enthralled by her beauty and charm, decided to cast her in his next movie.
Poonam initially turned down the offer as she was focused on her studies. Many of her family friends were surprised that she was turning down the offer of such a big filmmaker and convinced her to take up the film. Poonam and her family finally agreed but they laid down a condition. She would shoot only during school vacations so that her studies would not be hampered. Yash Chopra agreed and that was how Poonam Dhillon landed her first film Trishul in 1978. Her song Gapoochi Gapoochi Gum Gum with Sachin Pilgaonkar became popular.
Then, in 1979, alongside Farooq Shaikh, Yash Chopra cast her in the lead of Noorie, a film he also produced. The low-budget movie Noorie, which was filmed in Bhaderwah, Kashmir, became a smash hit and had incredible box-office success. After gaining fame, Poonam finally took the decision to become an actress and there was no looking back for her since then.
Poonam Dhillon appeared in more than 90 films and has also done television shows like Ekk Nayi Pehchaan. She was also a contestant on Bigg Boss 4.
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