Sheetal is an award winning actress, author, producer, and activist who burst onto the scene with raves in the groundbreaking film, ‘ABCD’, playing the gutsy lead, a risky and memorable role as a young Indian American girl struggling with the ties of family and tradition.
She broke out and won hearts in ‘Looking for Comedy in the Muslim World’ opposite Albert Brooks, as the female lead, Maya, winning the role after an extensive international casting search. Raised in a small New Jersey city, she discovered her passion for acting in high school and subsequently attended the Tisch School of the Arts at New York University. After supplementing her education with a summer in Amsterdam as part of the intensive, International Theatre Workshop studying under renowned acting teachers like Kristin Linklater, she graduated with honors.
Sheetal has starred in over 20 feature films and has earned a loyal, international following. She has become a favorite on the festival circuit for her provocative performances. She won 3 Best Actress nods for ‘The World Unseen’ and 1 for her role in ‘Wings of Hope’, with the former premiering at the Toronto International Film Festival and then going on to win 11 SAFTA’s (South African equiv to Oscars). In 2012, fans voted her ‘Favorite Movie Actress’ in AfterEllen’s Visibility Awards. Her short film ‘Grin,’ which she also produced, picked up several awards on the festival circuit including Best Actress and Best Film. She is in post production on ‘Hummingbird,’ a feature film she stars in and produced.
Sheetal has also appeared on many popular TV shows and lent her voice to iconic shows like The Family Guy. Her voice-over talents extend to films such as Ang Lee’s Life of Pi and to video games like Far Cry. Moreover, Sheetal has contributed pieces to various outlets including CNN, The Daily Beast, and Thrive Global. Her first children’s book Always Anjali was published in May, 2018 to wide acclaim and popularity. The follow up, Bravo Anjali! was published in September, 2021. It was the #1 release on Amazon in two categories. This series was the first picture book series that centered a South Asian hero. Penguin Random House acquired the Anjali series and are set to re-release all the books and the subsequent ones. Her book, Making Happy, was published in Fall, 2022 and is her most personal book to date. It is an ode to self care and mental health.
Sheetal’s career and personal reputation have drawn the attention of companies worldwide. She has represented such brands as Reebok and CHI haircare. She was also the first Indian American to appear in Maxim. Furthermore, Sheetal is known as much as an actress as she is someone who’s outspoken and heavily involved in community outreach. She takes an active interest in politics, she’s served in AmeriCorps (President Clinton’s National Service program), BBBS of LA, and is currently on the advisory board of Equality Now and on the board of SAYA. In 2021, she formalized her work in getting inclusive books to underserved kids with 1001 Diverse Books, a 501c3. She also regularly speaks on panels and forums internationally and delivers keynotes/talks at festivals and charity galas.
You can see Sheetal on the cover of several magazines including Anokhi, Audrey, Woman International, Seema as well as featured in magazines ranging from Best Life to Venice. Sheetal continues to tackle a wide range of roles and has developed an impressive body of work with an array of challenging and memorable characters in film, television, and theater.
All site photos:
Ash Gupta Andrew Chang Cava Photo David Carlson David Ferrua Deborah Lopez Dominick Guillemot David Titlow Kwaku Respective Production Co.