Pooja was born into a Mathur family in St. Louis, Missouri. Her father is from Dehradun and her mother is from Lucknow. She attended Washington University where she graduated with degrees in political science and finance. She is also trained in the Bharatanatyam, Kuchipudi, and Kathak forms of Indian classical dance. She was crowned Miss India USA in 1995. She first signed on to appear in director K. R.'s Tamil film Kadhal Rojave in 1997. She was earlier signed and then left out of the 1997 film V. I. P, while she had also signed to appear alongside Karthik in Chithra Lakshmanan's Chinna Raja, but was eventually dropped from the film. Pooja produced a short film, "1001 Auditions", that has been selected in eight film festivals, including being nominated for "Best Short" at the Stuttgart Film Festival in Germany. She has also produced a short film called "Shoot My Life". Pooja has also been seen in national TV commercials for Bombay Dreams, Verizon, Dodge, Pearle Vision, New York Lottery, Tata True Roots, AOL Time Warner, and Outback Steakhouse. In 2003, she received the Screen Actors Guild Emerging Actress Award for Flavors. After a long gap she reappeared in kollywood industry from the film Viswaroopam paired with Kamal hassan. Her future projects are Vishwaroopam 2, Sivaranjiniyum Innum Sila Pengalum and Meen Kuzhambum Mann Paanaiyum.
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