Inside the life of Shadow And Bone’s Amita Suman – from roles in Dr Who and Ackley Bridge to Netflix stardom

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If you’re among the masses hooked on the new high-octane fantasy series Shadow And Bone, you may have noticed a home-grown star making a name for herself as part of the young ensemble cast.

Amita Suman landed her first major role as Inej Ghafa in the chart-topping, highly anticipated Netflix adaptation of Leigh Bardugo’s best selling Grishaverse trilogy.

However, this is not her TV debut. Before she skyrocketed to superstardom, Amita played small parts in some iconic British television shows including Dr Who, Casualty and Ackley Bridge.

Born in Nepal, Amita moved to the UK when she was seven and grew up in Brighton. The talented young actress attended the Academy of Live and Recorded Arts (ARLA) and in her last year of drama school she landed a guest role in Dr Who.

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Amita played a younger version of Yasmin Khan’s grandmother in the episode Demons of the Punjab. Yasmin Khan was a companion to Jodie Whittaker’s Dr Who – the actressrumoured to be stepping downafter her three-year stint in the TARDIS.

In an interview with Vogue India, Amita said that this was one of her “favourite jobs.”

She explained: “The story resonated with me because, in Nepal, we went through the same life experiences growing up in a village, where marriage was seen as a woman’s life goal.

“Playing the character of Umbreen took me back in time to when I stepped onto a plane in real life and came to the UK when I was just seven, to experience a whole new world.”

In 2018, Amita also played minor roles in Ackley Ridge and Casualty.

You may have also spotted the 23 year old in The Outpost where she took over the role of Naya from Medalion Rahimi.

However, it seems Amita has always had a thing for fantasy. She admitted Angelina Jolie’s Lara Croft was the first strong female character to grab her attention when she moved to the UK in 2007.

“I dreamed of an opportunity to be cast in a similar role, without it being sexualised, but I was told that it would never happen because of the colour of my skin,” she recalled.

Now that Amita is playing a pretty hardcore assassin on one of the hottest shows of the moment, it appears the talented young actresses dreams have come true.

“Inej is unique in that she is a bada woman of colour in an epic fantasy drama. And I am not just ticking the diversity box in a big Netflix production,” Amita asserts.

As for what’s next on the cards, Amita said: “Everything. Fantasy, drama, sci-fi, action, romance—I just want to be an actor who tells a story that touches and inspires people, and makes you feel something,”

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