Priyanka Chopra Jonas says it’s ‘extremely hard’ for Indian stars to win Hollywood acting roles

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Peony Hirwani
·2 min read
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<p>Priyanka Chopra Jonas during the Pre-GRAMMY Gala in 2020</p> (Getty Images)

Priyanka Chopra Jonas during the Pre-GRAMMY Gala in 2020

(Getty Images)

Priyanka Chopra Jonas has opened up about her struggle to find work in Hollywood in her latest conversation with Indian actor Kabir Bedi,

The 38-year-old actress said: “I had to be ethnically ambiguous to a certain extent, to be able to get mainstream roles in Hollywood.

“In Quantico, I played a half-Indian, half-American. All my bigger work when I initially joined Hollywood, I could not step out there with being Indian, because it was too alien for Hollywood. I don’t think, for a very long time, they understood casting an Indian person in a mainstream role in a leading part. So even now, it was extremely hard.”

Bedi likewise mentioned how the Hollywood industry does have a role for Asians, however, they tend to paint “a white actor brown”.

“In those days, a Ben Kingsley had to change his name from Krishna Bhanji to Ben Kingsley to be taken seriously and get roles. Today, Priyanka Chopra does not have to change her name for her success in America,” he said.

Chopra Jonas interjected, saying: “But let me tell you. This is a couple of decades later when I decided to go and seek work in America. I didn’t have to change my name but I did have to teach people how to say my name. Everybody would be like Priyanka ‘Shapra-Shapra’. I said it is not Shapra. If you can say, Oprah, you can say Chopra. It’s not that difficult.”

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The duo also spoke about the grave situation of Covid in India.

The White Tiger actress wrote: “I’m seeing images and stories coming in from different parts of the country that are so scary … the situation is out of control and our medical fraternity is at a breaking point.”

The actress called for everyone to stay at home and get the vaccine. “Do it for yourself, your family, friends, community, and your frontline workers,” she said.

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For the past week, she has also been sharing information about Indian Covid resources, food services, plasma availability, and bed availabilities on all her social media profiles.

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