Freida Selena Pinto was born in Bombay (now Mumbai), Maharashtra, India, to Sylvia, a school principal, and Frederick Pinto, a senior bank branch manager. She is from a Mangalorean family.
Pinto traversed the modeling circuit in Mumbai (represented by Elite Model Management India) for two years before gaining her big break when director Danny Boyle picked her out in the audition process to play the female lead, Latika, for his project Slumdog Millionaire (2008). In a promo interview, Boyle likened spotting her to his discovery of Kelly Macdonald for Trainspotting.
Surprisingly, Freida, who studied at Mumbai’s St. Xaviers College, began taking acting classes (she has done amateur theater before) only after completing her debut film — when she attended a three-month workshop by Barry John, the veteran theater guru.
Between 2006 and 2007, she anchored Full Circle, a travel show that was telecast on Zee International Asia Pacific. She went on assignments to Afghanistan, Thailand, Malaysia, Singapore, Indonesia, and Fiji, among other countries.
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