From Salman Khan To Katrina Kaif, Celebrities Who Changed Their Names Before Entering Bollywood

Bollywood stars are recognised by their name in the industry. Their name is their real identity. But did you know some of the celebrities don't use their real name in the industry?


By Sonali Sachdeva Last Updated:


From Salman Khan To Katrina Kaif, Celebrities Who Changed Their Names Before Entering Bollywood

When we are born, our parents make sure to give us a special name that would be different from any other person. This is how our name becomes our identity. We think about a person when we listen to their name, it’s because the name holds the power. The phrase 'Naam Hi Kafi Hai', is proof of it.

We all are very much aware of famous personalities and their names. We look at too many big names from the entertainment industry. But did you know that some of the Bollywood actors and actresses actually had their names changed before they entered Bollywood? Let’s find out who are these celebrities and what is their real name.

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#1. Shilpa Shetty


The popular B-town actress, Shilpa Shetty Kundra is a big name in the Hindi film industry. She had started her journey in Bollywood with the movie, Baazigar in 1993. After gaining huge success in Indian Cinema, she achieved international fame as she won the British reality TV show Big Brother Season 5. Did you know Shilpa Shetty was initially named Ashwini Shetty at the time of her birth? Yes, that's right. But, her mother had decided to change her name as an astrologer had told them to do so. Her name change was required due to numerology.

#2. Saif Ali Khan

Saif Ali Khan

We all know that Bollywood actor, Saif Ali Khan is also a real-life prince, who owns the royal Pataudi Palace. Even though he is a prince, his name does not sound very royal. Most of us don't know that the cool actor, does have a royal name. Saif Ali Khan's real name is Sajib Ali Khan. His real name was disclosed when his marriage certificate to Kareena had accidentally gone viral on the internet.

#3. Salman Khan

Salman Khan

Salman Khan is the ‘Bhai’ of the Bollywood. He is known for his astounding acting skills and for his superb hosting skills in the famous reality show, Bigg Boss. Whatever Salman Khan does, becomes famous in seconds, because ‘Bhai Ka Naam Hi Kaafi hai’. However, Salman Khan’s name is just a shorter version of his real name, which is Abdul Rashid Salim Salman Khan.

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#4. Akshay Kumar

Akshay Kumar

The Khiladi of Bollywood is also a real-life Khiladi. While we all know Akshay Kumar, is amongst the highest-paid actors in Bollywood and lives a super lavish life. What we don’t know is that this isn't his actual name. The actor’s real name is Rajiv Hari Om Bhatia. Once Akshay Kumar had shared that one day he just went to court and got his name changed, without any reason.

#5. Preity Zinta

Preity Zinta

Preity Zinta is amongst the prettiest actresses of her time, just as her name suggests. She had played many roles as a young, bubbly girl in Hindi movies and remained a successful actress. Some of her Bollywood hits were Soldier, Veer-Zaara, Kya Kehna, Kal Ho Na Ho, and many more. Not many of us know that Preity Zinta’s name is not Preity, but Preetam Singh Zinta.

#6. John Abraham

John Abraham

The handsome hunk, John Abraham, is a crush of several Indian girls. John had made his debut in Bollywood with the film, Jism in 2003. Later, he gained huge popularity with the movie, Dhoom and since then there was no looking back for him. Have you ever thought John’s name is so stylish? Well, it's because that is just his onscreen name. The actor’s birth name is Farhan Abraham.

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#7. Sunny Deol

Sunny Deol

Dharmendra’s son, Sunny Deol has made a big name in the film industry with his movie, Gadar: Ek Prem Katha in 2001. The actor is referred to as the Angry Man of Bollywood, and he has won two National Film Awards and two Filmfare Awards. Sunny has a huge fan following but what his fans might be unaware of is that his name was initially kept as Ajay Singh Deol.

#8. Ajay Devgn

Ajay devgan

Actor, Ajay Devgn is a super talented actor. He is amongst those actors who had changed their name and kept a different professional name. Ajay Devgn’s birth name is Vishal Veeru Devgn. Just like, actress Shilpa Shetty, he also changed his name because of numerology and chose the name, Ajay.

#9. Tiger Shroff

Tiger shroff

Tiger Shroff is a versatile actor and is known for performing his own stunts in his films. Tiger Shroff has a very unique name since not many parents would name their son after an animal. Although, this is only his onscreen name. His real name is Jai Hemant Shroff and this remains to be a fact that not many know. His father, Jackie Shroff was the one who had revealed that he calls his son ‘Tiger’ out of affection because he would bite like a tiger when he was a kid.

#10. Sunny Leone

Sunny Leone

B-towns ‘Baby Doll’ Sunny Leone is a stunner. The actress has often been a part of many controversies due to her past profession as an adult movie star. However, she has millions of fans around the world. She is a real cutie and an amazing actress. But did you know Sunny’s real name is not Sunny? Instead, she has a Punjabi name, which is Karan Karenjit Kaur Vohra.

#11. Katrina Kaif


The gorgeous B-town actress, Katrina Kaif, often makes headlines for her love affairs. Katrina's alluring beauty and acting skills have made her a megastar in the Hindi film industry. The actress’ name is as beautiful as her, however, before she had moved to India she had changed her last name to Kaif which is her father's surname. Before she used her mother’s surname which was Katrina Turquotte.

#12. Kiara Advani

Kiara Advani

Did you know that Kiara Advani’s first name is not Kiara! It might come as a shock to many who were in love with her name. The actress’s real name is Aaliya Advani. It was Bollywood’s Bhai, Salman Khan who had advised her to change her name since there is already an actress named Alia Bhatt in the industry, which would have made Kiara’s real name not so unique.

Well, isn’t it shocking to know these celebrities had different real names? What do you think about it?  Let us know in the comment section.

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