|Born on||1st November 1973 (age 43)|
|Screen Name/ Original Name||Aiswarya Rai Bhachchan|
|Parents||Krishnaraj Rai & Brinda Rai|
Aishwarya Rai was born and brought up in a traditional south Indian non-filmy background, after having spent most of her early days in Mangalore, Karnataka,her family relocated to Mumbai where she did her schooling from Arya Vidya Mandir Singh School and later after completing her HSC exams with high marks Rai initially planned to architecture from Rachana Sansad Academy of Architecture which she later dropped to devote her entire time to modeling.
After competing in many modeling shows and events Aishwarya Rai came into prominence with some famous brand ads most notably the Pepsi ad where she acted along Aamir Khan and Mahima Chaudary and her surprisingly inhuman looks and charm and deep running green eyes saw to it that she became an instant sensation. Her major break came in 1994 when she became runner up in the Miss India pageant second only to Sushmita Sen which gave her a chance to contest for the prestigious Miss World title where she went on to be crowned the title in 1994 .Aishwarya Rai had been by then referred to as one of the most influential emerging talents in India and found her way up to cinema in 1997.
|Personal Life||Aishwarya Rai is married to actor Abhishek Bachchan; son of legendary Amitabh Bachchan in the year 2007. It was at the beginning of her career, when she was in a relationship with Bollywood actor Salman Khan which came to an end due to some difference of opinion between the two.|
Transition from Modeling to Cinema (1997-1998)
Aishwarya Rai made her most awaited entry into movies with the epic Tamil movie Iruvar where she was paired opposite the complete actor Mohan Lal in the semi-biopic of the legendary actor cum politician MGR; she played a dual role of which one bore resemblance to the yesteryear actress and chief minister of Tamil Nadu Jayalalitha directed by none other the Master filmmaker Mani Ratnam with Prakash Raj too playing another key role that of the real life Karunanaidhi.
Aishwarya Rai could not have asked for a better opening for her film career as Iruvar was a movie much ahead of the contemporary Tamil movies of that time in every sense and is still considered a very important cinema in Indian cinema history. Iruvar was not a hit but the critical reception for the movie was remarkable and with the critic’s also praising the actress’s confident and luminous debut where she was able to convincingly portray the emotional dilemmas of dynamically distinguished characters which seemed a herculean task for a new comer, Rai could not have asked for anything more at that point of time with a movie of that artistic grandeur and historical importance.
Her dialogues for the movie were dubbed by famous actress Rohini after Aishwarya Rai’s unsuccessful attempts at of speaking Tamil fluently. After the magical debut her next cast was in the Bollywood movie Aur Pyaar Ho Gaya where she was seen as the female lead to Bobby Deol. Aishwarya Rai got her very first Award for her performance but the movie bombed critically and commercially. She had made a space for herself with her stellar opening within a short span.
Aishwarya Rai was roped in by Shankar for his Big Budget movie Jeans where she shared screen with Prasanth in 1998. She continued her smart run for the third successive time with Jeans with her enigmatic and sporty performance. Jeans was also India’s official submission to the academy awards that year and was a tremendous hit which also boasts of an unforgettable music album from the Maestro A R Rahman.
Rishi Kapoor was next in line to cast Aishwarya Rai in his feature film directorial debut Ah Ab Laut Chalen in 1999 which proved too costly for Rai as she was panned by the critics for her lifeless and boring conception of the character of a Indian women settled in the US, the movie got her very first negative criticism in her career for the very first time.
Career defining break with Hum Dil De Chuke Sanam (1999)
Sanjay Leela Bhansali gave Rai her very first Blockbuster in Hum Dil De Chuke Sanam where she was seen as a girl who finds herself in between a forced marriage and unrequited love; where Ajay Devgan and Salman Khan played the lead protagonists. The movie was well received and restored Rai’s acting credentials and she was complimented immensely for her refreshing and heart-breaking interpretation of the character which was definitely a big turnaround for Rai as received Filmfare Award for Best Actress for her role which was a key for her quick public acceptance as a serious actress. Taal saw Rai coming together with an ensemble cast, where she followed her success streak from the earlier part of the year.
Aishwarya Rai was seen coming back to Tamil cinema with acclaimed cinematographer Rajeev Menon’s Kandukondain Kandukondain in the year 2000 where she was cast opposite Mammooty for the very first time in the romantic drama which also starred actors like Ajith, Tabu ; an adaptation of Jane Austen’s novel Sense and Sensibility , where Rai was played the central female character who realizes the meaning and value of true after a drastic turn of events in her personal life , Rai’s articulate and soulful adaptation of the original character was highly acclaimed and the movie was a super hit. Rai had by then become a well-known figure in south India especially amongst the Tamil audience with the popular movie.
Rai acted in Shah Rukh Khan’s Josh in the same year, which too turned out to be an average affair in the box office. Rai took a huge upward step later that year when she played a rape victim in Sathish Kaushik’s Hamara Dil Aapke, Rai’s melancholic rendition of the mental trauma of a rape victim also opened up new character possibilities for Rai and also getting her third Filmfare nomination for Best Actress.
Rai was seen next in a major Bollywood production for Yash Raj film’s Mohabbatein , the romantic movie saw Rai in a supporting cameo where she was cast with Shah Rukh Khan , the character was well noted despite its limited screen time also getting her an award for best supporting actress. Albela did her career no good at all ending with a very poor review for her performance and she was especially criticised as being ‘plastic” in most parts in her rendition.
Game changer again with Sanjay Leela Bhansali (2002)
Aishwarya Rai came back strong to her critics with Sanjay Leela Bhansali’s Devdas which was the retelling of the Sharath Chattopadhaya’s novel of the same name alongside Shahrukh Khan and Madhuri Dixit where all three came up with career defining performance’s and Rai found her long overdue recognition in the Academy Award nominated classic, also got her the second best actress awards in the Filmfare again. Rai followed up with her Brother’s own production Dil Ka Rishta with Arjun Rampal where her mother served as a writer too following up another romcom Kuch Na Kaho with her future husband Abhishek Bachchan both of which were downward steps after Devdas for Rai. Rituparno Ghosh gave Rai yet another memorable outing in Chokher Bali in the academic perspective.
Rai had a pretty much inconsistent run films due to her bad scripts selection due to Rai ended up with two more failures in Khakee and Kyun Ho Gaya Na in 2004.
But later she again bounced back with the Brithish production Bride and Prejudice opposite Martin Henderson but Rai was still being constantly praised for her flawless looks but drawing doubts ofher acting nuances from some corners. National Award winning Rain Coat again saw her joining hands with Rituparno Ghosh where she stole the show yet again with her stellar performance. Rai went on to do Shabd and Mistress of Spices both of which got surprisingly horrible reviews for Rai’s acting.
After delivering a recognized character in Umrao Jaan , Rai finally broke her uneventful run after Devdas with the second instalment of the Dhoom franchise Dhoom 2 with Hrithik Roshan and Abhishek Bachchan also in the lead. Rai got a much awaited blockbuster in Dhoom 2 in 2006. In Mani Ratnam’s Guru Rai was back to the winning ways again and her performance was seen by many critics as crucial and rising above the script in many instances especially towards the ending. Provoked yet another British production was a milestone for Rai as everyone unanimously for the very first time rated her performance as exemplary and was even cited as being too good to be real.
Jodha Akbar yet another benchmark in Rai’s career (2008)
Jodha Akbar was the epitome of the genius; in Rai where she went on to give a breath taking performance ; was seen at her very best as Jodha in the epic tale opposite Hrithik Roshan from Ashutosh Gowariker , Rai was seen emoting the characters state of mind with acute depth and alarming poise. Rai was also under the limelight for her role in Sarkar Raj opposite Ahishek Bachchan band with Amithabh Bachchan which also released the same year.
Rai went on being part of Foreign language films often and this time around with the sequel to Pink Panther starring Steve Martin, the movie based on a comedy of errors failed to fetch Rai a meaty role but was seen mostly in a trivial background character but she had established her reputation for being continuously cast in foreign films, a feat which no other Indian actress has been able to do and it made her a regular name outside India too.
Rai was cast again by her mentor Mani Ratnam in the bilingual movie Raaven which was a perspective re-telling of the epic Ramayana where Rai played the modern version of Sita in a fictionalized landscape with actors like Vikram , Prithviraj Sukumarn in the Tamil version and Abhishek Bachachan and Vikram in the Hindi spinoff. Rai largely received highly contrasting reviews for her performances though the actress in Rai was used to full effect in the movie for sure and Rai’s screen presence is also considered by many as the best thing about the movie.
Rai was cast opposite Super Star Rajnikanth for the first time in the science fiction extravaganza Enthiran directed by Shanker later the same year ; seemingly involving a plot where a robot falls in love with its creators fiancée was the most expensive Indian film at that point and was a record hit at the Indian and foreign market where Rai had nothing much to do other than casting out her exceptional good looks appearing at crucial plot points and leaving the rest to the male lead Rajnikanth. Sanjay Leela Bhansali as always came to Rai’s rescue with Guzharish opposite Hrithik Roshan where she played the wife of a quadriplegia patient ; the understated performance saw Rai at her all time high with her expressive eyes and also her innate grace and vitality which also made its way up her most stunning works yet to be released.
A long sabbatical from cinema only to return in 2015
Rai took a long gap in her career after a few forgettable outings only to come back in 2015 with the action thriller Jazbaa alongside Irrfan Khan, the movie was a money spinner and also garnered moderate critical success wherein Rai was complimented for her finesse in action sequences but she was again put under awful review for Sarbjit where each and every aspect of her character met with demoralizing word of mouth. Rai was seen last in Karan Johar’s latest movie Ae Dil He Mushkil which released in October to highly encouraging reviews.
|Awards||Aishwarya Rai has received Filmfare best actress nominations for a shopping ten times in her whole with two successful Best actress Awards for Hum Dil De Chuke Sanam and for Devdas for her mesmerizing performances. Aishwarya Rai is also a proud recipient of the Padma Shri, the fourth highest civilian honour in India and also has an Ordre des Arts et des Lettres awarded by the France government. Aishwarya is also the winner of the prestigious Miss World competition of the year 1994.|
|Other works||Rai was also a prominent figure once in television advertisement industry and has done innumerable ads for various brands thought her career. Rai has also taken part in social initiatives like she was a part of the Magnificent Five along with other four actors who conducted tours. Rai has also performed at HELP! Telethon Concert in 2005 to raise money for the victims of 2004 tsunami with other celebrity figures. Rai has also started a school for underprivileged girls in Uttar Pradesh along with her husband’s family. Rai is also UN Microcredit Spokesperson and also has set up a foundation in her name to help the poor.|
|Milestones||Aishwarya Rai Bachchan is an often discussed name in world media right from her modelling days and has been a strong figure in Indian glamour world. Rai has established herself as one of the finest actors in the country with her outspoken personality and vast body of work. Aishwarya Rai is one of India’s most popular actors of all time with her dazzling beauty and outspoken performances in cinema. Aishwarya Rai has been over the year been able to be part of many classic movies and she is considered by many to be the lady superstar of Indian Cinema.|