One of India’s first supermodels. Actor. Cancer survivor. Mother of twins through surrogacy. Woman of no fixed address.
Today I am honored to interview cross cultural phenomenon Lisa Ray.
She is an internationally acclaimed performer, philanthropist and star with a reputation for taking on challenging issue-oriented films. Raised in Canada by an Indian father and Polish mother, Ray was discovered while on vacation in India and went on to become not only one of the most successful cover models and celebrities in India but also an acclaimed, award-winning actress who starred in Canada’s Oscar nominated film, Water, amongst other prestigious credits. Named one of the ‘Ten most beautiful Indian women of the millenium’ by a Times of India poll, Ray cemented her profile as an iconic figure in India before leaving for drama school in London and opportunities around the world.
Along the way, Ray found time along the way to host her own entertainment show in India, filmed a landmark music video for Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan, and became the enduring brand ambassador for Rado Watches.
In 2009, Ray attended the Toronto International Film Festival in support of her work in two films. The event marked an important public announcement, in which Ray chose to share her diagnosis of Multiple Myeloma with media and the public. The outpouring of support was immediate and overwhelming. She also started a blog (‘The Yellow Diaries’) to share her cancer experiences. Her forthrightness and humour in navigating a difficult illness have earned her the attention and respect of people from all corners of the world, as well as ‘The Voice Achievers Award, 2009’ and ‘The Hope Award, 2010’. Ray went on to help raise funds for the establishment of the first research chair for Multiple Myeloma at Princess Margaret Hospital in Toronto. Ray’s philanthropic interests range from taking part in the on-air drive for SickKids Hospital to Ambassador of Plan Canada’s ‘Because I Am A Girl’ campaign, a global movement that supports the rights of girls around the world.
In 2019, Lisa released her memoirs Close to The Bone. “An unflinching, deeply moving account of her nomadic existence: her entry into the Indian entertainment industry at sixteen; her relationship with her Bengali father and Polish mother; life on the movie sets and her brush with the Oscars; her battle with eating disorders; being diagnosed with multiple myeloma at thirty-seven; her spiritual quest; lovers and traitors, mentors and dream-makers; and the heartaches and triumphs along the way. It is also about Lisa’s quest for love. Funny, charming, and gut-wrenchingly honest all at once, Close to the Bone is Lisa Ray’s brave and inspiring story of a life lived on her terms.”
Lisa and her husband Jason Dehni have two lovely daughters, Sufi and Soleil.
Meet My Guest:
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