Archie Panjabi, who was born Archana Kaur Punjabi in West London, is a British actress of Sindhi descent most known for her role as Wall Street Journal reporter Asra Nonami in the 2007 Golden Globe nominated drama A Mighty Heart. Archie spent a portion of her childhood in…more
In 2010, Archie won an Emmy Award for Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Drama Series playing Kalinda Sharma on The Good Wife.
On her spare time, Archie enjoys unwinding in the pub or having long walks with her dog or going to the gym.
Awards & Nominations:
• 2002 (W) - Personality of the Year Award, BBC Mega Mela Award
Asian Life, for Bend It Life Beckham
• 2003 (N) - Best Actress, Royal Televison Society Award, for Grease Monkeys
• 2005 (W) - Shooting Star Award, UK Shooting Star Berlin Film Festival, for Yasmin
• 2005 (W) - Best Actress in a Leading Role, Reims Festival, for Yasmin
• 2005 (W) - Prix Ciné Femme Best Actress, Mons International Festival of Love Films, for Yasmin
• 2005 (W) - Chopard Trophy Best Actress - Breakthrough Performance, Cannes Film Festival, for A Mighty Heart
Film and TV Movie Credits:
• Espion(s) (2009) as Anna
• The Happiness Salesman (2009) as Karen
• Be Good (2009) as Animal Adoption Officer
• My World (2008) as Teacher
• Traitor (2008) as Chandra Dawkin
• Love Triangle (2007)
• I Could Never Be Your Woman (2007) as Casting Girl
• Lezioni di volo/Flying Lessons (2007)
• A Good Year (2006) as Gemma
• A Very Social Secretary (2005) as Ashley
• Chromophobia (2005) as Sarita
• Yasmin (2004) as Yasmin Husseini
• Final Demand (2003) as Farida
• This Little Life (2003) as Niala
• Cross My Heart (2003) as Sumi
• Arranged Marriage (2002) as Shashi
• The Secret (2002) as Nadia's Probation Officer
• Ivor the Invisible (2001) as Leila
• Delilah (2001) as Adult Pim
• In the Beginning (2000) as Basya, Pharaoh's Daughter
• Tough Love (2000) (TV) as Chandra (Mr Jones)
• Under the Moon (1995) as Heena
• Bideshi (1995) as Joyoti
She is married to Raj Nihlipandi.
Archie graced the cover of the July 2007 issue of New York Moves magazine.
Aside from being a television and film actress, Panjabi also lends her voice for Indian characters on the radio. She voiced Blaze, an aspiring Indian Princess actress in Westway, a radio drama by BBC World Service.
In 2000, she appeared in a television commercial for the AA car breakdown service.
Archie carries around with her a small, gold protection amulet given by her Guru from Malaysia.
When she changed her first name from Archana to Archie, casting directors initially mistook her to be a man.
Her character Megan Sharma on Sea of Souls was the first role she's played that wasn't particularly written for an Asian.
She was featured in the Student and Graduate Successes section of her Alma Mater's alumni newsletter, Brunel Link in 2003.
Archie: I always knew I wanted to be an actress but used to wonder if I would ever find a man who would accept that about me. I guess I am lucky to have eventually found someone who, in addition to guiding me, reads my scripts and talks to me about it. I treasure his advice. I always feel there's two of us in this and mentally it keeps me stable.
Archie: (about working with Angelina Jolie in "A Mighty Heart") Great fun. We just clicked as soon as we met. I say it's probably because we're both Geminis, I tend to get on extremely well with Geminis, it's like you find your twin. And we tapped into each other's energies really well. Because it was the two of us and six men and not just in this industry I think women there's always some sort of tension, more than likely the women don't get on and the men do, but I think everybody was really surprised that we got on really well, so it was us against them and I think they were scared of us. (Laughing)
Archie: (on the lessons she learned after doing "A Mighty Heart") It was all so obviously sad, I mean how could you not feel upset and angry over something like that. But what I did learn from the entire incident and now after making the movie, is that it is always better to not have any bitter feelings or any hatred but to come out of these times with dignity and grace. That is one of the things I learned from Marianne Pearl and it is truly a great message.
Archie: One of the things I love about my career is, if you choose your projects carefully, you can go from one character, and I think every actor has the ability to do it, and you can just completely transform yourself.
Archie: I believe one of the most important ways of combating racism - and trying to get people to accept everyone for who they are - is to just cast from a group of people and see which one is right.
Archie: (about her view on spirituality) I've always been quite psychic and believe there's a reason why things happen and that we need to learn from them. I think that is especially important in this business, it chews a lot of people up. It's one of the hardest professions in the world to maintain any kind of stability.
Archie: (on her wanting to become an actress) My parents were very supportive, which was truly great and I did finish school, because they wanted me to have something to fall back on, just in case. So as long as I satisfied that concern, they were fully supportive.
Archie: I like to do new things, so I always take on roles that I feel will keep me on my toes. I never want to pigeon myself, so I always like to surprise myself. I believe in versatility and so I would play anything as long as it was a challenge.
Archie: (on the acting profession) This business does really rob you of your innocence. I feel a constant struggle all the time. I don't ever want to be hugely famous because I had a little taste of it after East is East and Bend It.
Archie: I think it is vital to fight to do something you want to do despite not gaining your community's or your friends' approval.