Ileana D'Cruz is an Indian film actress, who predominantly appears in Telugu-language films. Starting her career as a model, she made her feature film debut in Y.V.S. Chowdhary's 2006 Telugu film Devadasu. She went on to appear in commercially successful ventures Pokiri (2006), Jalsa (2008) and Kick, establishing herself as one of Telugu cinema's leading actresses. Ileana was born in Mumbai, Maharashtra as the second child to her parents. Her father is a Catholic from Goa, while her mother is a Christian who converted from Islam. She has three siblings, an elder sister named Farah, a younger brother Reece and a younger sister Erene. Her first name comes from Greek mythology. While growing up, she lived for several years in Goa.
D'Cruz made her feature film debut in 2006 in the Telugu language romance film Devadasu, directed by Y. V. S. Chowdhary, who spotted her in a "Fair and Lovely" ad film directed by Rakesh Roshan. Critics were in praise of her, particularly referring to her physique and looks; Jeevi of Idlebrain wrote that Ileana "makes a cool debut. She is good at histrionics and has a fabulous body any woman would love to possess. Devadasu, which also marks its lead actor Ram's acting debut, became the year's first major commercial success, eventually grossing around 14 crores, whilst earning Ileana the Filmfare Award for Best Female Debutant. She next appeared opposite Mahesh Babu in the action flick Pokiri in which she portrayed an aerobics teacher, who is harassed by a corrupt police offer. The film was a huge financial success, emerging the highest-grossing Telugu film of all time until then, as well as Ileana's biggest commercial success so far.
Later that year, she made her Tamil-language film debut in Kedi (2006). Although the film did not do so well at the box-office, D'Cruz remained too busy to accept all the film roles offered to her. Her Telugu film Khatarnak (2006) in which she acted opposite Ravi Teja did not do as well as expected, which has been attributed to her glamorous appearance not going down well with the audience. She subsequently experienced a setback in her career as her following releases Rakhi (2006) and Munna (2007) proved critically and financially unsuccessful. D'Cruz's career took a turn for the better with the release of her well-received 2007 film Aata, acting opposite Siddharth. She received favorable reviews for her performance as Satya, a college student who is on the run from the home minister's crooked son by whom she is targeted, when leading a protest and demanding punishment for his crimes. Idlebrain described her as "gorgeous" and a "treat to watch to the eyes". In 2008, she performed a lead role opposite Pawan Kalyan in Jalsa.
Her 2009 film with Ravi Teja, titled Kick, was declared a hit at the box office, following which she starred in the 2009 films Rechipo and Y.V.S. Choudary's Saleem alongside Vishnu Manchu, which both performed poorly at the box office. Ileana just finished shooting for Shakti, where she plays next to Jr.Ntr, which she worked earlier in Rakhi. Puri Jagannadh signed her for his forthcoming film Nenu na Rakshasi. This would be the second co-operation for Ileana with Puri, after the huge succses of Pokiri in year 2006. She has done a Item song in the Kannada movie Huduga Hudugi called 'Ileana Ileana'. Ileana was seen in the Telugu and Tamil Remake of the Hindi blockbuster 3 idiots.
She made her Bollywood debut with the movie 'Barfi' opposite Ranbir Kapoor.