-:Aishwarya Rai Bachchan :-
Rai made her acting debut in the 1997 biographical film Iruvar and starred in the commercially successful 1998 film Jeans.Aishwarya earned wide public recognition and Best Actress awards at Filmfare for her leading roles in Sanjay Leela Bhansali's 1999 melodrama Hum Dil De Chuke Sanam and the 2002 period film Devdas. Rai gained critical appreciation for her portrayal of Tagore's heroine Binodini in Rituparno Ghosh's 2003 film Chokher Bali, and a depressed woman in Ghosh's 2004 relationship drama Raincoat. Following a series of commercially unsuccessful films, she featured in the 2006 blockbuster adventure film Dhoom 2, the 2008 historical romance Jodhaa Akbar, and the 2010 science fiction film Enthiran. Aishwarya garnered wide critical acclaim for her work in Bhansali's 2010 romantic drama Guzaarish.
Following a tumultuous relationship with actor Salman Khan, she married actor Abhishek Bachchan in 2007. Her off-screen roles include duties as a brand ambassador for several charity organisations and campaigns; she is a Goodwill Ambassador for the Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS). Rai was awarded with the Padma Shri by the Government of India in 2009, and the Ordre des Arts et des Lettres by the Government of France in 2012.
-:Early life and modelling career:-
The family moved to Mumbai, where she attended the Arya Vidya Mandir High School. Rai did her intermediate schooling at Jai Hind College for a year, and then joined DG Ruparel College in Matunga, securing 90 percent in the HSC exams. She trained in classical dance and music for five years during her teens. Her favourite subject was zoology, so Aishwarya initially considered a career in medicine but was unsuccessful later on. Then with plans to become an architect, she enrolled at Raheja College of Arts., but later gave up her education to pursue a career in modelling. In 1991, she won a supermodel contest (organised by Ford) and was eventually featured in the American edition of Vogue.
In 1993, Rai gained public recognition for her appearance in a Pepsi commercial with actor Aamir Khan. In the 1994 Miss India pageant, Aishwarya Rai won second place, behind Sushmita Sen, and was crowned Miss India World. With Sen representing India at the Miss Universe pageant, Aishwarya's duties as the first runner-up included representing India in the rival Miss World Pageant, held that year in Sun City, South Africa. Aishwarya went on to win the crown where Rai also won the "Miss Photogenic" award and Miss World Continental Queen of Beauty − Asia & Oceania. After winning the pageant, Rai spoke of her dream for peace for this world, and her desire to be an ambassador of peace during her one-year reign in London. she continued to pursue a career as a model until she became an actress.
-:Early work, 1997–98:-
Rai made her acting debut in 1997 with Mani Ratnam's Tamil film Iruvar, a semi-biographical political drama, featuring Mohanlal, Prakash Raj, Tabu and Revathi. The film was a critical success and among other awards, won the Best Film award at the Belgrade International Film Festival she featured as Pushpavalli and Kalpana – dual roles; the latter was a fictionalised portrayal of politician and former actress Jayalalithaa. Due to Rai's weak Tamil-speaking skills, her dialogue in the film was dubbed by another actor. That same year, Rai was cast as Ashi, a naive teenager in her first Bollywood film – Aur Pyaar Ho Gaya, a romantic comedy opposite Bobby Deol. The film was a commercial failure, and reviewers were critical of the film and Rai's acting ability. Rai next appeared in the 1998 big-budget Tamil romantic drama Jeans, directed by S. Shankar and co-starring Prashanth and Nassar. she played Madhumita, a young woman who accompanies her ailing grandmother to the United States to seek medical attention. A commercial success, the film earned Rai praise for her dancing skills. Unlike in Iruvar, she practised and dubbed for her own lines in the film. Jeans was later submitted as India's official entry to the Academy Awards for 1998. Her first role in 1999 was in the melodrama Aa Ab Laut Chalen, directed by Rishi Kapoor. The film was a critical failure and had a below average performance at the box office. she's portrayal of Pooja Walia, a traditional Indian woman living in the United States, met with negative reviews; Rediff.com published, "Aishwarya Rai sports a plastic smile and never gets a scene where Aishwarya can portray any depth. All she does is cry and smile and look pretty".
-:Public recognition and success, 1999-2001:-
In 2000, Rai starred in Kandukondain Kandukondain, a Tamil language adaptation of Jane Austen's novel Sense and Sensibility. Directed by Rajiv Menon, the film also starred Tabu, Mammooty and Ajith Kumar in prominent roles. she was cast as Meenakshi (based on the character of Marianne Dashwood), the younger sister of Tabu's character. The film was a critical and commercial success and earned she positive comments from critics; a review carried by The Indian Express summarised, "Attacking her role with just the perfect dollop of innocence, Aishwarya does full justice to her part, and matches up perfectly to Tabu."
Rai next starred alongside Shahrukh Khan and Chandrachur Singh in the action drama Josh.Aishwarya Rai portrayed Shirley Dias, the twin sister of Khan's character who falls in love with his arch enemy's brother (played by Singh). The casting of shre as Khan's sister was considered an unusual pairing at the time; director Mansoor Khan, however, described it as "perfect". Despite earning mixed reviews from film critics, Josh emerged as a commercial success. Satish Kaushik's social drama Hamara Dil Aapke Paas Hai was Rai's next release; she played a rape victim in the film. Co-starring Anil Kapoor and Sonali Bendre, the film was well received by critics and did moderate business at the box office. Film critic Sukanya Verma praised Rai's decision to star in the film and added that Aishwarya "conveys the turmoil and pain of a rape victim well. But it is her transition from an emotional wreck trying to gather the broken pieces of her life back together that is amazing." Rai eventually earned a third Best Actress nomination at Filmfare.
Following a leading role in the box-office flop Dhai Akshar Prem Ke, she took on a supporting role in Aditya Chopra's ensemble romance Mohabbatein. Rai's role was that of Megha Shankar, the daughter of Amitabh Bachchan's character who commits suicide after realising that her father will not accept her romance with one of his students (played by Shahrukh Khan). Despite earning mixed reviews from film critics, Mohabbatein emerged as the second highest grossing film of the year and earned she a Filmfare Award for Best Supporting Actress nomination. The following year, Aishwarya starred alongside Govinda and Jackie Shroff in the romantic comedy Albela. Upon release, both the film and her performance received mostly negative reviews; Taran Adarsh of Bollywood Hungama criticised the film and mentioned she as "plastic in some scenes".
-:Devdas and International recognition, 2002–07:-
In 2003, she featured in two romantic dramas of Bollywood, her brother's production début Dil Ka Rishta, alongside Arjun Rampal, and Rohan Sippy's Kuch Na Kaho, alongside Abhishek Bachchan. Neither of these films fared well critically or commercially . Rai was later noted for her starring role in Rituparno Ghosh's independent Bengali film Chokher Bali, an adaptation of Rabindranath Tagore's novel of the same name. Aishwarya portrayed the character of Binodini, an emotionally manipulative widow, struggling with her sexual desires in early-20th century Bengal.The film was a major critical success and she earned positive notice for her performance; Derek Elley of Variety noted, "Rai dominates the film with her delicately sensual presence and physical grace". Commercially, the film was a sleeper hit.
After the success of Chokher Bali, she returned to mainstream Hindi film with Rajkumar Santoshi's Khakee (2004), a suspense thriller featuring Amitabh Bachchan, Akshay Kumar, Ajay Devgan and Tusshar Kapoor. The film tells the story of five constables embroiled in a mystery surrounding a terrorist attack; Rai's role was that of Mahalakshmi, a gun moll. While filming for Khakee, she was accidentally hit by a running car, which resulted in the fracture of her left foot.Upon release, the film received moderate critical and commercial success. In her next release, the romantic comedy Kyun! Ho Gaya Na..., she played Diya Malhotra, a university student who develops a one-sided attraction toward her friend Arjun Khanna (played by Vivek Oberoi). The film received positive to mixed comments from critics, but failed commercially.
In late 2004, she garnered international recognition for her starring role opposite Martin Henderson in Gurinder Chadha's British film Bride and Prejudice, a Bollywood-style adaptation of Jane Austen's novel Pride and Prejudice. International film critics were appreciative of Rai's "beauty" but questioned her acting abilities; a review carried by The New York Times mentioned her as "radiantly beautiful but inert". With a worldwide gross of $24 million against a production budget of $7 million, Bride and Prejudice proved a commercial success. she next collaborated with director Rituparno Ghosh, for the second time, in the relationship drama Raincoat, an adaptation of O. Henry's The Gift of the Magi. Also featuring Ajay Devgan, Raincoat met with wide critical acclaim and among other wins, won the National Film Award for Best Feature Film in Hindi. The Hindu noted, "Aishwarya Neerja, she appears to have shed her inhibitions about looking unglamorous. What is more, she seems to have made an earnest effort to emote, using less of her body and limbs and more of her face, and eyes in particular". Aishwarya eventually received another Best Actress nomination at Filmfare.
Rai next co-starred alongside Sanjay Dutt and Zayed Khan in the 2005 adult drama Shabd, which tells the story of an author who convinces his wife to pursue an illicit relationship with a younger man in research for his next book. The film received predominantly negative reviews and proved a commercial failure. The Times of India concluded, "For the umpteenth time, Ms she looks drop-dead gorgeous. And that's about it. Rai is like that picture postcard you get when what you were actually waiting for is a letter. It's very beautiful to look at, but is of no use because it says nothing."That same year, she took on the lead role of Tilo in Paul Mayeda Berges's romantic fantasy film The Mistress of Spices, an adaptation of the novel of the same name by Chitra Banerjee Divakaruni. The film received unanimous negative reviews from film critics and emerged as a commercial failure. Peter Bradshaw of The Guardian termed Rai's performance as "annoying" and wrote that she "wafts and simpers" through the entire film.Rai's only successful venture of 2005 was a special appearance in Shaad Ali's comedy Bunty Aur Babli, in which she featured in the popular item number Kajra Re.
In the Sanjay Gadhvi-directed adventure film Dhoom 2, she portrayed Sunehri, a petty thief who helps the police catch an illusive criminal; the film had an ensemble cast including Hrithik Roshan, Abhishek Bachchan, Bipasha Basu, and Uday Chopra. Though critically unsuccessful, the film was Rai's first major commercial success since Devdas; the film was declared a blockbuster, and became the highest grossing Indian film of 2006 with gross revenues of over 1.11 billion (US$18 million). Rediff.com commented, " Rai is all gloss and no depth. You seldom feel any tension in her behaviour and expressions. Sunehri enters the film nearly 50 minutes after its opening in a disguise. In no time, she is wearing the flimsiest of clothes. Once she opens her mouth—and she does it two minutes after appearing in the film—Aishwarya spoils the image." Nonetheless, her performance earned her a sixth Filmfare Award nomination in the Best Actress category.
In 2007, she played the wife of Abhishek Bachchan's character in Mani Ratnam's social drama Guru. A fictionalised biography of businessman Dhirubhai Ambani, Guru tells the rag to riches story of an uneducated man who builds a multinational corporation. The film met with international critical acclaim and emerged as a box-office success. Richard Corliss of Time labelled her character as an "ornament", but Raja Sen from Rediff described it as "her finest performance, visible especially when Aishwarya Rai takes over the film's climax." she received her seventh Best Actress nomination at Filmfare for her performance in the film. Rai next starred alongside Naveen Andrews and Miranda Richardson in Jag Mundhra's independent British drama Provoked, as the real-life character of Kiranjit Ahluwalia, a non-resident Indian who murders her husband after suffering from years of domestic abuse. Rai earned mostly positive comments for her performance. Critic Indu Mirani from DNA wrote, "Aishwarya she plays the battered wife in what is undoubtedly one of her best performances to date. she convincingly goes through the various stages of shock, bewilderment, remorse and finally vindication". Internationally well-received, the film emerged as a moderate commercial success in the United Kingdom.That same year, she starred as Mira, an Indian warrior in Doug Lefler's epic film The Last Legion. Starring alongside Sir Ben Kingsley, Colin Firth, and Thomas Sangster, the film was a major critical and commercial failure. New York Daily News noted, hough Rai may be the most beautiful woman in the world, ... she's no actress."
-:Jodhaa Akbar and beyond, 2008–10:-
In 2010, she was cast by Mani Ratnam in his bilingual modern-day adaptation of the Indian epic Ramayana. Her role was that of Ragini (modeled on Sita, the heroine of Ramayana), a woman married to the superintendent of police, who is kidnapped by a bandit. The Hindi version (Raavan) and the Tamil version (Raavanan) of the film were shot simultaneously and she played the same role in both the film versions. The films received polarising reviews from film critics, as did Rai's performance. Kaveree Bamzai of India Today wrote, "Aishwarya's Sita is one of the best things in the film. Her performance is heartfelt--this is a performer who is at ease playing women, rather than girls. However, film critics Aniruddha Guha and Rajeev Masand criticised her character and noted, "She's left to scream and shriek and hiss." Commercially, Raavanan emerged as a success while Raavan flopped. Rai's next role was opposite Rajinikanth in the science fiction Tamil film Enthiran (2010), directed by S. Shankar. Aishwarya Rai was cast as Sana, a college student and the girlfriend of Rajnikanth's character. At the time of release, Enthiran was the most expensive Indian film production and eventually emerged as one of the highest-grossing Indian films of all time. then appeared as Mala, an impetuous brat, in Vipul Shah's Action Replayy; a science fiction comedy co-starring Akshay Kumar, Aditya Roy Kapoor and Neha Dhupia. Upon release, the film met with largely negative reviews and proved an economic failure.
Rai's final film of 2010 was the drama Guzaarish; her third collaboration with director Sanjay Leela Bhansali and actor Hrithik Roshan. The film tells the story of Ethan Mascarenas, a former magician (played by Roshan) suffering from quadriplegia, who after years of struggle, files an appeal for euthanasia. Rai's role was that of Sophia D'Souza, Mascarenas' nurse, who is abused by her alcoholic husband. Despite flopping at the box-office, Guzaarish met with positive critical comments. The Telegragh described it to be Rai's "best performance" and The Times of India summarised, "Aishwarya is a stunning picture of fire and grace, walking away with certain scenes by her sheer vitality." In 2011, she was cast as the protagonist of Madhur Bhandarkar's social drama Heroine; however, due to her pregnancy, she was replaced by actor Kareena Kapoor, the original choice for the role.
Aishwarya Rai has taken part in several stage shows and world tours since 2001. Her first world tour, a series of concerts called Craze 2001, was performed across the US alongside Anil Kapoor, Aamir Khan, Priety Zinta and Gracy Singh. The show faced early cancellation due to the September 2001 attacks, and the team prepared to return to India as soon as possible. However, the shows continued successfully in Canada. In 2002, Aishwarya participated in the show From India With Love in the UK, along with Amitabh Bachchan, Aamir Khan, Shahrukh Khan and Priety Zinta. It took place at two outdoor venues, Manchester's Old Trafford and London's Hyde Park, with over 100,000 spectators. In the summer of 2008, she , her husband Abhishek Bachchan, her father-in-law Amitabh Bachchan, and actors Preity Zinta, Ritesh Deshmukh, and Madhuri Dixit starred in the "Unforgettable World Tour" stage production. The first leg covered the USA, Canada, Trinidad, and London, England. she is also involved in the functional and administrative operations of her father-in-law's company, originally known as ABCL, and rechristened as AB Corp. Ltd. That company, along with Wizcraft International Entertainment Pvt. Ltd., developed the Unforgettable production.
In February 2005 Rai performed alongside other Bollywood stars at the HELP! Telethon Concert, an event to raise money for the victims of the 2004 tsunami earthquake. Along with other members of the Bachchan family, Rai laid the foundation of a special school for underprivileged girls in Daulatpur village in Uttar Pradesh in 2008. Construction is being funded by the Bachchan family, and the school will be named after she . Aishwarya appeared along with various other Bollywood actors at the closing ceremony of the 2006 Commonwealth Games in Melbourne. The performance showcased Indian culture as a lead-up to India hosting the 2010 Commonwealth Games.
-: Humanitarian work :-