Actress and comedian Aneesha Madhok, known for the play Aliza-Free, will soon be making her Hollywood debut in Bill McAdams, Jr.’s coming-of-age feature film Bully High as the main lead. The story revolves around a Muslim girl who gets bullied in an American high school, but learns to stand up for herself and defeat violence with love.
Born in Kenya, Aneesha has lived in New Delhi. “I felt, I could express myself better on stage than in ordinary life,” she quips. No wonder she took to dancing at the age of three and began winning school plays and dance competitions.
At seventeen, Aneesha’s grittiness compelled her to secretly write her play Aliza-Free, while her parents thought she was doing her summer holiday homework. She managed to stage the play in Delhi with a cast of 16 actors. Being a sensitized dance drama, aimed to create awareness about the lives of visually impaired people, Aliza-Free received critical acclaim. And this made Aneesha more determined about her career path.
Moving to Los Angeles to pursue her education in theatre and screenwriting at University of Southern California (USC), Aneesha became the president of the USC stand-up comedy club. She began doing stand-up comedy shows all around LA. On her summer vacation to India, the spunky gal became a finalist on Queens of Comedy 2017.
While studying at USC, Aneesha wrote and starred in a short film The Dancer Girl, which was inspired by her life. It won best drama short at Calcutta International Film Festival, Universe Multicultural Film Festival, best student short at Los Angeles Independent Filmmakers Showcase, and was the official selection at Feminist Media Film Festival.
Graduating from USC, she played the lead in Christopher Vened’s play Infidel, where was spotted by director Bill McAdams, Jr. (of Gallows Road fame) and cast as the main lead in Bully High.
“Aneesha dives into her role with crafty finesse, falling deep into the heart and soul of her character, Maryam. She makes me laugh and she makes me cry… her passion for acting truly shines. I can’t wait to release her to the world,” notes McAdams, Jr. That makes it even more interesting to wait and watch if Aneesha can hit a high note with Bully High.