Urmila Matondkar (Marathi: उर्मिला मातोंडकर) (born on February 4, 1974 in Mumbai, Maharashtra, India) is an Indian Bollywood actress.
Matondkar, who was early in her career known for her bold image, was initially noted for her roles in films like Rangeela (1995) and Satya (1998). During the 90s, she has frequently been featured in the Indian media as a sex symbol.
She subsequently went on to show her psychological acting abilities, and has delivered a range of critically acclaimed performances. She received various Best Villain nominations for her role as an obsessive lover in Pyaar Tune Kya Kiya (2001), and won her first Filmfare Award under the Best Performer category for her portrayal of a ghost-possessed woman in Bhoot (2003). She was later highly praised for her roles as a merciless avenger in Ek Hasina Thi (2004) and a caring daughter in Maine Gandhi Ko Nahin Mara (2005).
She started her career as a child artist; perhaps the best known of her early movies is Shekhar Kapur's Masoom in 1983. She made her film debut as an adult actress with the film "Bade Ghar ki Beti". She next starred in the fantasy film Chamatkar, along with Shahrukh Khan.
She went on to frequently collaborate with film director Ram Gopal Verma, who is known for his thrillers. Her first film with him was Antham in Telugu, which was dubbed as Drohi (Hindi) in 1992. Since then, she has starred in numerous subsequent RGV pictures, like Gaayam in Telugu and her first major hit, the 1995 musical Rangeela. She played a star-struck dancer in the film, and received her first Filmfare Best Actress Award nomination for her performance in the film. Following RGV projects were Daud (1997), Satya (1999), Kaun (1999), Mast (2000), Jungle (2000), Pyaar Tune Kya Kiya (2001), Bhoot (2003), and Ek Hasina Thi (2004).
Her most notable films in the 1990s since Rangeela have been Judaai alongside Sridevi and Anil Kapoor, and for which she received various award nominations for Best Supporting Actress and Satya where she proved her strong dramatic abilities.
During the 2000s, Matondkar revealed strong, dramatic and psychological features in her roles, and delivered a myriad of critically acclaimed performances. She won favorable reviews for her role as an obsessive lover in Pyaar Tune Kya Kiya (2001), and received various Best Villain nominationsa for her performance.
In 2003, she was part of several projects. She played the role of a north Indian girl in the background of the 1947 India partition in the critically acclaimed Pinjar; she played the title role in Khalid Mohammed's drama Tehzeeb, starring along Shabana Azmi; however, she was mainly noted for her performance in Bhoot, a horror movie. Matondkar enacted a ghost-possessed woman; her performance was much appreciated by critics and audiences and she won her first Filmfare Award under the Best Performer category, as well as various Best Actress awards at different award ceremonies, suce as Star Screen Awards, Zee Cine Awards and Bollywood Movie Awards. She later received the national honour Rajiv Gandhi Award for the film, as a recognition to her achievement in Bollywood.
In 2004, she was praised for her role as a merciless avenger in Ek Hasina Thi along with Saif Ali Khan. She played the role of a deceived woman who is jailed because of her lover, played by Khan, and later flees from prison to avenge him. Once again, Matondkar was nominated for her performance in the film.
Next year in 2005, she tried her hand with another horror film, playing the title role in the film Naina, which failed. However, her performance as the caring daughter of Anupam Kher in Jahnu Barua's art film Maine Gandhi Ko Nahin Mara was very well received, and she won her second Bollywood Movie Award for Best Actress. Following this, Mantondkar was recognized as one of India's most versatile actresses for these performances.
Apart from holding a successful acting career, she is regarded as an outstanding dancer and has been a featured performer in many Bollywood item numbers. Her best-known item number is the Chamma Chamma sequence from the 1998 China Gate. Other hit numbers include Aaiye Aajaye from the hit film Lajja. She was signed to perform the item song in Ram Gopal Varma Ki Aag, a remake of the 1975 blockbuster Sholay. She played the role originally played by Helen.
In 2007, Matondkar lent her voice for Asha Bhonsle's album Asha and Friends Vol 1, where she performed with Bhosle the duet song "Mehbooba Dilruba". In fact, throughout the 1990s – 2000s, Bhosle sang the maximum number of songs for Urmila.