November 2018 cover star Anushka Sharma: "I didn't grow up dreaming to be an actor"

The actor has completed a decade in Bollywood

It’s practically impossible to get Anushka Sharma’s attention today. Us two-legged folk are nowhere on her radar on the set of this photo shoot, where she appears entirely preoccupied with the two rescued strays that have been brought in to be photographed with her. One is a barely month-old pup, and he seems to like the taste of whatever cosmetics she’s slapped on this morning — he won’t stop licking her face. (She doesn’t seem to mind). The other is a bigger guy and he just looks like he wants to be fed, photo shoot be damned.

It isn’t until the changes are done — and the dogs have been packed off, actually — that Anushka is ready to return to the land of us mere humans. She is warm and friendly, but never too friendly. Unlike many of her peers, there is no all-consuming desire to be liked. There is no pandering. She’s refreshingly straightforward; it’s been her most marked characteristic since she became an actor.

Excerpted from ELLE's November cover story. To read the full story, subscribe to the print edition here or download the digital edition here.

Check out Anushka Sharma's stunning shoot for ELLE's November issue:

Photograph: Prasad Naik

Styling: Rahul Vijay

Art direction: Mrudul Pathak Kundu

Hair: Yianni Tsapatori/Faze Management

Make-up: Puneet Saini 

Assisted by: Akshita Singh, Divya Gursahani and Kavisha Khandelwal (Styling)