Priyanka Chopra Jonas talks to Stylist about her prolific career, how she expresses love and knowing her own self-worth.
The actor wrote her memoir Unfinished in lockdown 1.0 and this week she appears on the cover of Stylist to discuss writing her life to this point: the highs, the lows and all the bits in between. And you can download the issue on the App Store or Google Play.
The book is a candid reflection of everything Chopra Jonas has experienced from a child growing up in Bareilly in northern India to being a globally famous actor and businesswoman today. It takes in winning the Miss World competition in 2000; her regrets over advertising skin-lightening products when she was younger saying: “That was one of the biggest missteps of my career and is one of my most profound regrets”; the grief she endured after the death of her beloved father Ashok in 2013 and the bullying she experienced while at a school in the USA.
“I blamed myself for a while. I realised only when I got much older that it wasn’t my fault,” she tells Stylist of the experience. “[You have to] learn to forgive yourself. But it’s so much easier said than done. I would not have been able to do it as a teenager.”
The book also includes meeting her now-husband, musician Nick Jonas, who she married in an incredible ceremony in 2018. She discusses, with Stylist, her love language and how she expresses affection – author Gary Chapman says there are five love languages: words of affirmation, quality time, physical touch, receiving gifts and acts of service.
“I think mine is through thoughtful gestures,” she says. “For my loved ones I like to think about what they might want before they’ve even thought about it. Or surprise them with something that they might not expect. That gives me the greatest joy: I love being Santa.”
Chopra Jonas, who recently starred in, and produced, Netflix film White Tiger, which was watched by a huge 27 million people in its first four weeks, is also open about having to effectively start her career again when she went to the US to work, after having prolific success as an actor in India.
“Just because a large diaspora of people know me working in Hindi language entertainment, that shouldn’t be expected in another country,” she says. “Just like if you take a lot of American stars into the heartlands of India, they won’t know them. Culturally it’s different. I learned that very quickly when I came to the US. It was a moment to check myself and swallow my pride and say: ‘I’m okay to walk into a room and introduce myself. I have self-worth enough to be able to do this.’”
Unfinished by Priyanka Chopra Jonas is published by Michael Joseph, £20, Hardback, out now.
Images: courtesy of Priyanka Chopra, Getty, Netflix