Melinda Leanna Shankar is a Canadian actress, writer, and producer. She is best known for starring as Alli Bhandari in the television series Degrassi: The Next Generation (2008-2015) and as Indira “Indie” Mehta in the YTV series How To Be Indie (2009-2011), for which she won several awards, including a Canadian Screen Award in 2013.
Nick name: Mindy
Years active: 2008–present
Born age: February 18, 1992, 31 years old and 3 months, Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Hair Color: Black
Eye Color: Dark Brown
Height: 5 ft / 1.52 m
Measurements: 33-25-34 in / 84-63.5-86 cm
Bra size: 32B US / 70C EU
Mother – She was an actor
Siblings – Melissa Shankar (Sister), Melanie Shankar (Sister), Michael Shankar (Brother) (Hockey Player, Lead Guitarist in a band)
Race / Ethnicity
Melinda studied at Sir Wilfrid Laurier Secondary School in Ottawa until the 11th grade and then decided to relocate to Toronto at the age of 16. Soon, she got her big break in Degrassi: The Next Generation in 2008.
Melinda Shankar was born on February 18, 1992, in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada to Canadian parents of Hindu Indo-Guyanese descent who immigrated to Canada. She has two older sisters and a brother, who is also an actor. She was raised in Orleans, Ontario, a suburban section of Ottawa.
She began studying ballet and karate at the age of three. Shankar currently has a black belt in karate. She attended Sir Wilfrid Laurier Secondary School in Ottawa until grade 11 before moving to Toronto when she was sixteen, following her casting in Degrassi: The Next Generation in 2008.
Shankar began her career as a child model and appeared in numerous print advertisements, including a Procter & Gamble billboard in Los Angeles. Shankar’s mother was an actress and her paternal grandfather was a director in Guyana. Shankar’s father would often drive up to five hours from Ottawa to Toronto for her auditions.
In 2008, she debuted as an actress in the popular CTV television series Degrassi, joining the cast as an incoming 9th grade student. Shankar left the show in 2015, after seven seasons.
In 2009, she starred in a television series on YTV called How To Be Indie. She played the lead role of Indira “Indie” Metha for two seasons. The series aired its final episode in October 24, 2011. For her role, Shankar won a Gemini Award in 2011 and a Canadian Screen Award in 2013.
Shankar was cast in her first feature film, Festival of Lights in 2010. The movie was filmed on location in New York City and Georgetown, Guyana. Her father served as production manager for the film due to his familiarity with the locations in Guyana.
Melinda made her theatrical film debut in the comedy film Eat Ghee in 2010.
First TV Show
Melinda appeared on the family comedy series Degrassi: The Next Generationas Alli Bhandari from 2008 to 2015.
In 2013, Shankar and a longtime childhood friend began working on an image consulting business.
On February 22, 2014, Shankar launched Miss Conception, a professional styling and image agency based in Toronto.
In 2008, Shankar and her family moved to Toronto when she was cast in Degrassi. She currently resides in North York, a district in Toronto.
Melinda Shankar Favorite Things
- Food – Sushi
- Type Of Chocolate – Lindor
- TV Shows – Orange is the New Black
- Superhero – Ms. Marvel, Kamala Khan
- Makeup Brand – La Sante
- Lipstick Color – Heroine by MAC
- Season – Summer
- Meal To Cook – Baked salmon with cream cheese, garlic, dill, and lemon, Mango ginger soup
- Mobile Application – Starlight
- Cooking Sites – Goneraw.com
- Dessert – Red Velvet Cake
- Books – Birthday Book
- Degrassi Memory – The purple vibrator storyline
- Character Played – Alli Bhandari
- Quote – Everything happens for a reason.
Melinda Shankar Facts
- Her family has a school in Ottawa where they teach martial arts.
- Her father was diagnosed with diabetes.
- She never had to cook at home while growing up.
- She enjoys reading, especially astrology-related novels.
- Melinda has a library in her bedroom consisting of astrology novels and dream dictionaries.
- Her parents are originally from Guyana, where her great-grandfather owned a theater production company.
- Before becoming a full-time actor, she was a martial artist and a professional ballet dancer.
- She has been a part of various fundraisers and is a strong believer in women’s empowerment.
- Alongside Aidan Quinn, Ritu Singh Pande, and Jimi Mistry, she co-starred as Reshma in the 2010 drama film Festival of Lights.
- She was cast as Indira “Indie” Mehta (an upbeat and lively teenager who is a new generation Indian and is very modern, who often clashes with her parents) in the comedy series How to Be Indie from 2009 to 2011.
- Melinda looks for humor and family-oriented qualities in a man.
- In 2017, she brought to life the character of Talvinder “Tal” Gill (a new, manipulative camp counselor) in the horror anthology series Slasher: Guilty Party.
- She is fond of drawing sketches of clothes and jewelry and has even custom-made some of her outfits from her designs.
- If not an actor, Melinda would have opted to be a fashion designer.
- She confessed to being a tomboy while growing up.