Bollywood star Priyanka Chopra makes rare leap to American TV

(CNN)She’s a megastar from Mumbai, India, home to the world’s most prolific film industry.

She’s an award-winning actress, a former Miss World, a singer and a dancer. She serves as a UNICEF goodwill ambassador and as a United Nations Girl Up Champion, and she is involved in efforts to promote the education of girls in India.

    She’s a social media queen, with more than 10 million followers on Twitter.

    Priyanka Chopra has international cachet and a global fan base. But her star power has been relatively lackluster in the United States.

    That may be about to change. Chopra is the star of “Quantico,” a drama premiering September 27 on ABC. In recent weeks, her face has been splashed across billboards and buses from Los Angeles to Toronto to New York.


    She got unexpected insight into the medium from an unlikely source: actor Kevin Spacey, whom she met at the International Indian Film Academy awards last year. The two conducted a film workshop class together and exchanged notes about acting.

    “He happened to mention that TV was most exciting medium of almost everything, because he has no idea what his character (Frank Underwood in ‘House of Cards’) is going to do, and I find that so true,” said Chopra, who admits to being mostly in the dark about “Quantico’s” plot line. Audiences will learn the identity of the terrorist by the end of season 1, she said.

    Early reviews for Chopra in “Quantico” have been positive. Entertainment Tonight named her one of three breakout stars for the fall TV season, while The Hollywood Reporter called her “one of the most formidable talents hitting TV this fall.”

    Roush said Chopra was the only “Quantico” actress to appear at the Television Critics Association’s press tour in Los Angeles in August. “It’s unusual during the press tour with a cast of that size to present only one actor, so it’s clear they see a big star in her,” he said.

    For now, Chopra’s plan is to straddle two performing careers: one in the U.S. and the other in India. Next, she’s working on an Indian epic historical drama about an 18th-century Indian warrior.

    “For me, success means achieving something people did not expect you to achieve,” said Chopra, who is extremely close to her family and still feels the absence of her father, who died in 2013.

    “My dad always told me — and I always follow this,” she said. “As a girl, you should not be someone who tries to fit into a glass slipper. You should shatter the glass ceiling, and that’s what I’m trying to do.”


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