After winning the Ford Godrej Cinthol contest, Basu also was flown to New York by the Ford Company, where she had a successful modelling career at the age of 17.
Basu made her film debut in Abbas Mustan's Ajnabee, with Akshay Kumar, Bobby Deol and Kareena Kapoor. She played a married woman who goes all out to woo her husband’s married friend, and eventually won the Filmfare Best Female Debut Award for her performance.
In 2002, Basu starred in Telugu movie Takkari Donga and Vikram Bhatt's thriller Raaz. Raaz was a big commercial success and surfaced as the biggest hit of that year. For her performance in the film, she received her first Best Actress nomination at the Filmfare. One review in The Tribune noted, "...it is Bipasha Basu who steals the show with her fine performance." She appeared as Sonia Khanna in the 2003 hit movie Jism alongside John Abraham. The movie earned her a Filmfare Best Villain Award nomination.
Besides acting, Basu did the video "Tu" for Sonu Nigam's album, Kismat. She also made a guest appearance in Jay Sean's music video Stolen.
In 2006, she performed an item number during the song Beedi in the film Omkara for which Rediff noted Basu's picturisation.
In 2008 Basu starred in Race, her second collaboration with duo Abbas Mustan, with whom she debuted in Bollywood. Co-starring Saif Ali Khan, Akshaye Khanna, Anil Kapoor and Katrina Kaif, the film performed well at the box office, and Basu's performance was appreciated by critics. Taran Adarsh of indiaFM described her performance as "her best work so far. She’s superb". She also received good reviews for her role in Bachna Ae Haseeno opposite Ranbir Kapoor. She completed the year by appearing in Rab Ne Bana Di Jodi in the song Phir Milenge Chalte Chalte.
In 2005 Bipasha and John Abraham did a fitness video with Eros called Bollywood Bodies. In 2010 she has launched her own line of videos with Shemaroo under the banner BB - Love Yourself. The first release is called 'Fit and Fabulous You
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