Brillstein to rep India's Jaitley


NEW DELHI -- Former Miss India-turned-actress Celina Jaitley has been signed by Brillstein Entertainment Partners, making her one of the few Indian talents to be represented by a Hollywood-based agency.

In an interview Wednesday, BEP manager Jai Khanna, who will handle Jaitley, said: "We are initially focused on Hollywood and international projects for Celina, but we will be available to her for counsel on Indian projects as well. Our goal is for Celina to excel in both industries."

Born in Kabul to an Afghan mother and Indian father and raised in India, Jaitley started out as a model, winning the Miss India title in 2001. She made her Bollywood debut in 2003's "Janasheen" (The Seductive Beloved) and "Khel" (Play).

As for potential projects, Khanna explained that BEP "will be pursuing opportunities in both TV and feature films for Celina."

In addition to Jaitley, Khanna said BEP represents such U.S.-based Indian talent as actress Navi Rawat, seen on the CBS crime show "Numbers," TV producer Krishnan Menon, novelist Sanjay Sanghoee and comedienne Priya Ayer.

An increasing number of Indian talents are catching Hollywood's attention, but only a few are working with Los Angeles-based agents.

Following the 2001 foreign-language Oscar nomination for "Lagaan" (Land Tax), its lead actor and producer, Aamir Khan, was signed by Endeavor Talent Agency.

Among the best-known examples of Indian talent crossing over to Hollywood are Shekhar Kapur -- who directed "Elizabeth" and its upcoming sequel, "The Golden Age" -- and 2004 Miss World Aishwarya Rai, who is represented by CAA and recently began filming "Pink Panther 2" with Steve Martin.

In addition to her international debut with 2004's "Bride and Prejudice," Rai also starred in this year's "The Last Legion" with Ben Kingsley and Colin Firth. She next appears in "Singularity," a war drama co-starring Brendan Fraser.