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Sonali Bendre’s Bio: The Nuanced Actor and Her Empowered Journey of Surviving and Thriving Cancer

Sonali Bendre’s Bio: The Nuanced Actor and Her Empowered Journey of Surviving and Thriving Cancer
Credit: Sonali Bendre at Instagram

Someone rightly said that describing Sonali Bendre’s beauty can be a tedious task. Well, Certainly! She is one of the finest Bollywood actresses, and we can’t deny!

Sonali Bendre is an Indian actress who predominantly works for Hindi films and television shows. In 1996, she came into the limelight after working in the Hindi film Diljale, wherein she played the role of Radhika. Besides being an actor, Bendre is an active supporter of cancer survivors. Meanwhile, in this article, we learn about Sonali Bendre’s personal and professional life.

Early Life, Family, and Education

Born on 1 January 1975 (age 48 years; as of 2023) in Bombay, Maharashtra, Sonali Bendre belongs to a non-acting family. Her father, Jit Bendre, worked at the Central Public Works Department of India, while her mother, Roopse Bendre, is a homemaker. Additionally, Sonali has a younger sister named Gandhali Paranjape.

Owing to Sonali’s father’s transferable job, Sonali had attended several schools across the country. Meanwhile, she did her schooling at Kendriya Vidyalaya Malleswaram, Bengaluru, Holy Cross Convent High School, Thane, Maharashtra, and Welham Girls High School, Dehradun. Soon after completing her higher secondary education, she pursued graduation at Ramnarain Ruia College, Mumbai.



  • During her childhood, Sonali never wanted to pursue a career in acting. Nevertheless, during her graduation days, she took part in a modelling show and eventually won the pageant.
  • Soon after winning the pageant, Sonali received several modelling and acting offers. Hence, this made her try her luck in acting.
  • Initially, Sonali worked as a model and several print shoots featured her. Later, at 19, she made her acting debut with the Hindi film Aag (1994), wherein she played the role of Parul. In 1995, Sonali Bendre appeared in many Hindi films like The Don, Gaddar, Takkar, and Bombay.
  • Meanwhile, in 1996, Sonali garnered popularity in the Hindi film Diljale; she played the role of Sonia Maheshwari. Later, in 1999, she worked in the popular film Hum Saath Saath Hain.
  • Subsequently, in recent years, Sonali Bendre has worked in many Hindi films like Once Upon a Time in Mumbai Dobaraa! (2013) and Love You Hamesha (2022).

Television Shows

  • Besides working in films, Sonali Bendre has worked in several reality shows. In 2001, she made her reality show debut with the TV show Kya Masti Kya Dhoom; she was a host in the reality show.
  • In 2008, she judged the reality show Mr & Mrs Television. Between 2008-12, Sonali Bendre judged many prominent TV reality shows including Indian Idol, India’s Got Talent, and  Hindustan Ke Hunarbaaz.
  • Meanwhile, Sonali has worked in reality shows like India’s Best Dramebaaz, Super Dancer, and DID Li’ls Masters.

Web Series

  • In 2022, she made her digital debut with the ZEE5 series The Broken News, wherein she played Amina Qureshi.

Also read – Karisma Kapoor’s Bio: From Stardom to Fitness, She Conquers It All

Awards Received by Sonali Bendre

  • Filmfare Lux New Face Award (1995) for AAG.
  • Screen Award in Most Promising Debut Actor (1995) for AAG.
  • Screen Award in Best Supporting Actress (2001) for HAMARA DIL AAPKE PAAS HAI
  • Indian Telly Award for Best Judge Panel (2012) for INDIA’S GOT TALENT.
  • Zee Rishtey Award for Favorite Judge (2017) for INDIA’S BEST DRAMEBAAZ.
  • Vogue Beauty Award (2019).
Sonali Bendre’s Bio: The Nuanced Actor and Her Empowered Journey of Surviving and Thriving Cancer
Credit: Sonali Bendre at Instagram

Sonali Bendre’s Relationship Timeline

Alleged Affair with Politician Raj Thackeray

Besides acting projects, Sonali Bendre often makes headlines for alleged relationships. Meanwhile, initially, Sonali was rumoured to be dating the famous Indian politician and the founding chairperson of Maharashtra Navnirman Sena (MNS), Raj Thackeray. He was so obsessed with Sonali’s enlightening beauty that he used to recommend Bendre for films.

Raj also wanted to marry Sonali Bendre; however, his previous marriage with Sharmila Thackeray restricted him from doing the same. Later, owing to his political career, the couple separated.

Marriage with Goldie Behl

Despite several rumoured affairs with celebrities, Sonali Bendre decided to enter into a marriage with Indian filmmaker and entrepreneur Goldie Behl. Meanwhile, it was Sonali’s sister who introduced her to Goldie. After years of dating, the couple decided to tie the knot. Additionally, the couple has a son, Ranveer Behl.

Also read – Soha Ali Khan’s Bio: The Quintessential Bollywood Royalty with a Royal Lineage from Pataudi

Times When Sonali Bendre Made Controversy

The Blackbuck Poaching Case

In 1998, Sonali Bendre along with co-actors Salman Khan, Saif Ali Khan, Tabu, and Neelam Kothari was charged with poaching two blackbucks in Rajasthan. Meanwhile, this took place during the filming of Hum Saath Saath Hain. Nevertheless, Bendre was acquitted in February 2018. However, Rajasthan High Court issued her with a notice, challenging her acquittal.

Arrested for Hurting Religious Sentiments

In 2012, Mumbai Police arrested Sonali Bendre. Meanwhile, she was apprehended for wearing a thigh-length, lemon yellow kurta with Om and Om Namah Shivay printed on it.

What is the net worth of Sonali Bendre?

As of 2023, Sonali Bendre has an estimated net worth of $3 million, which in INR is 24 Crores. Besides, Bendre charges a whooping sum of INR 4 lakh per episode for reality shows.

Do You Know These Lesser Known Facts About Sonali Bendre?

  • In 2018, Sonali Bendre was diagnosed with metastatic cancer and was undergoing treatment in New York. Although battling stage 4 cancer, she became cancer-free in 2021.
  • Bendre had a crush on the prominent actor Sunil Shetty, according to reports. However, none of them confirmed the same.
  • Besides being an actress, Sonali Bendre is an author. Additionally, she has authored the book “The Modern Gurukul: My Experiments with Parenting’.
  • Sonali Bendre welcomed Michael Jackson when he arrived for the much-awaited concert in India. Bendre, who was dressed up in a gorgeous Marathi saree, welcomed Michael by applying Tilak on his forehead.
  • Not only in films but Bendre has worked in several theatrical productions. One of them was Aap Ki Soniya.
  • Along with Hindi films, Sonali Bendre has worked in Tamil, Kannada, Telugu, and Marathi films

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