Porn Star Sunny Leone Debuts in Bollywood

 Clockwork Films / Fisheye Network

NEW DELHI – In a first of sorts, one of America's top porn stars – Sunny Leone - makes her acting debut in Bollywood with the raunchy sequel Jism 2 which opened Friday. Directed by Pooja Bhatt, daughter of veteran film-maker and Jism 2 producer/writer Mahesh Bhatt, the film revolves around a porn star (Leone) who is hired by an intelligence officer (Arunoday Singh) to entrap a dreaded assassin (Randeep Hooda).

Jism 2 (Hindi for “body”) has been making news ever since Mahesh Bhatt offered the 31-year-old Leone the lead role in the film when the porn star was a guest on the Indian version of Big Brother last year. Bhatt made the offer to Leone live on television via a surprise appearance on the show which in itself generated enough interest. Pre-release publicity was  fueled further when Mumbai Mayor Sunil Prabhu recently ordered Jism 2 posters to be removed from the city's buses as he found them “objectionable and vulgar.”

Born to Indian immigrants of Sikh heritage in Canada, Leone and her family moved to the U.S. when she was 13. Leone became 2003 Penthouse Pet of the Year which led her to be signed as a contract star for leading adult video banner Vivid Entertainment. Maxim magazine voted her as one of the top 12 porn stars in 2010. Leone runs her own adult banner Sunlust Pictures with her partner and husband Daniel Weber.

“I am not ashamed of my past,” Leone said in a television interview adding that her Bollywood debut has been a “great opportunity.” Even while Jism 2 was in production, Leone featured in a commercial for a condom brand.

While Indian films have started to push the boundaries when it comes to on-screen sexuality - considering even a kiss was mostly taboo in Bollywood – the Adult-certified Jism 2 does not show any frontal nudity. But it does raise temperatures compared to 2003's Jism which, at the time, catapulted Indian actress Bipasha Basu as Bollywood's new sex symbol.

Jism 2 is a sexy movie - but it's not as dirty a picture as you might expect,” said a review in The Times of India newspaper. “Surprisingly, Jism 2 hovers over sex, like a butterfly gliding across one of the many water pools the movie features. The few times the film does jump in, it lands in the shallow end.”

Leone's India film debut comes on the heels of another first-of-its-kind crossover with Bollywood starlet Sherlyn Chopra becoming the first Indian to shoot a pictorial for Playboy to be published in November.

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