Rao was born in Los Angeles, California to Indian parents, a physicist mother and an engineer father. He has one sister who is a professor at NYU. He grew up in Yanbu, Saudi Arabia; Denver, Colorado; and Claremont, California. He graduated from Claremont High School and the University of California, San Diego, with a BA, later receiving an MFA from the American Conservatory Theater in San Francisco where he was a classmate of Anna Belknap and Elizabeth Banks.
Rao’s first role after graduating was in the U.S. premiere of Indian Ink by Tom Stoppard. Rao moved to Los Angeles and began working in regional theater including the Berkeley Rep, South Coast Repertory and for the Manhattan Theater Club.

He competed on Jeopardy! on June 7, 2002, and won $34,400. On June 8, 2008, Rao was randomly selected from over 1600 entrants to play the NPR Weekend Edition Sunday puzzle on air with Will Shortz. Rao claimed that he had been playing the puzzle at home for “infinity years”.

He has appeared in the TV series “Brothers and Sisters” and “Standoff”, but Supanova fans will know Rao best from his feature film appearances of recent years such as Sam Raimi’s “Drag Me To Hell”, and the HUGE international hits “Inception” and James Cameron’s “AVATAR.”

Dileep looks forward to seeing all his fans at both the Brisbane and Melbourne shows and will be appearing each Saturday 10.30am to 5.30pm and each Sunday 11am to 5pm for autograph* and photo* sessions and Q&A sessions at each expo.


* Autograph ($30 each) and photograph ($40 each) fees apply

  • Guest confirmed health and other commitments pending

Previous Appearances

  • Brisbane 2011
  • Melbourne 2011

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