Nazneen Contractor is an Indian-born Canadian actress best known for her staring role as Sergeant Layla Hourani in the television drama series The Border, in 2008.
She is also known for her role as Kayla Hassan in the eighth and final season of the action drama television series 24, in 2010.
Contractor is Parsi — Indian of Persian descent — and a Zoroastrian.
She was born in Mumbai and lived in Nigeria until she immigrated to Canada at the age of 10 in the early 1990s. She had been studying ballet since she was very young. So when it came time for her to go to high school, she auditioned for the Etobicoke School of the Arts in Toronto’s west end.
She studied sociology and psychology at the University of Toronto, and she attended an audition for the Stratford Festival.
Artistic director Richard Monette was looking for “ethnic” actors to perform in a production of The King and I. Contractor got signed and ended up spending 2 1/2 years with the company – without appearing in the musical.
However, she did have feature roles in such productions as A Midsummer Night’s Dream and As You Like It.
Contractor was set to go back for a third year in 2006 when CBS called and offered her a spot on The Papdits, by the people who produced Da Ali G Show and Borat.
She has been married to fellow 24 star Carlo Rota since 1 April, 2010.