Before starring in Slumdog Millionaire, Pinto anchored the international travel show, Full Circle, on Zee International Asia Pacific in English between 2006-08. Pinto was also featured in several television and print advertisements for products such as Wrigley’s Chewing Gum, Škoda, Vodafone India, Airtel, and DeBeers. Pinto modeled for four years and appeared in runway shows and magazine covers. She learned acting from The Barry John’s Acting Studio in Andheri and was trained by theatre director Barry John. After six months of auditions, she received a call to audition for Slumdog Millionaire. Pinto auditioned for Danny Boyle and was short-listed and finally selected to star in Slumdog Millionaire.
Pinto made her feature film debut in 2008 in Slumdog Millionaire playing the role of Latika, the girl with whom Jamal (Dev Patel) is in love. At the 2008 Toronto International Film Festival, the movie won the Cadillac People’s Choice Award.At the 2009 Golden Globe Awards, the movie won four awards. Pinto herself was nominated for “Best Actress in a Supporting Role” at the 2009 BAFTA Awards, She won the Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by a Cast in a Motion Picture alongside other cast members from Slumdog Millionaire.
Pinto co-starred in Woody Allen’s comedy-drama film You Will Meet a Tall Dark Stranger, with Antonio Banderas, Josh Brolin, Anthony Hopkins, Anupam Kher and Naomi Watts, which premiered at the 2010 Cannes Film Festival. Pinto is due to appear in the 2011 science fiction film Rise of the Planet of the Apes, the prequel to the Planet of the Apes (1968), opposite James Franco. She will portray the role of Caroline, a primatologist, who studies primates in the film. She will also appear in the 2011 fantasy-action-drama film, Immortals, in which she will play the role of the oracle priestess Phaedra.
Pinto has joined hands with Andre Agassi and Steffi Graf to support their philanthropic organisation “Agassi Foundation”. She is the only Indian actress to have participated in their annual fund raiser titled, “The 15th Grand Slam for Children”, that aims at raising funds for education of underprivileged children.