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Aishwarya Rai

(Indian actress)

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Aishwarya Rai Bachchan (born 1 November 1973) is an Indian actress and former Miss World. Before starting her acting career, she worked as a model and gained fame after winning the Miss World title in 1994. Rai has acted in over 40 movies in Hindi, English, Tamil and Bengali, which include international productions.

Often cited by the media as the most beautiful woman in the world, Rai made her movie debut in Mani Ratnam's Tamil film Iruvar (1997) and had her first commercial success in the Tamil movie Jeans (1998). She came to the attention of Bollywood in the movie Hum Dil De Chuke Sanam (1999), directed by Sanjay Leela Bhansali. Her performance in the film won her the Filmfare Best Actress Award. In 2002 she appeared in Bhansali's Devdas (2002), for which she won her second Filmfare Best Actress Award.

After a low phase in her career during 2003-2005, she appeared in the blockbuster Dhoom 2 (2006), which turned out to be her biggest Bollywood commercial success. She later appeared in films like Guru (2007), Jodhaa Akbar (2008), and Enthiran (2010) which were commercially and critically successful. Rai has, thus, established herself as one of the leading actresses in the Indian film industry. In 2009, she was honoured with the Padma Shri by the Government of India.

Rai was born in Mangalore to Krishnaraj Rai and Vrinda Rai. She has one elder brother, Aditya Rai, who is an engineer in the merchant navy and has also co-produced one of Rai's movies, Dil Ka Rishta (2003). At an early age her parents moved to Mumbai where she attended the Arya Vidya Mandir High School in Santa Cruz. Rai entered Jai Hind College at Churchgate for one year, and then moved to Ruparel College in Matunga to finish her HSC studies. She planned to become an architect but gave up her education to pursue a career in modelling.

She can communicate in several languages, including her mother tongue Tulu, as well as Hindi, English, Marathi and Tamil.

She is only the fourth Indian actor after Amitabh Bachchan, Nandita Das and Shahrukh Khan to be chosen for an Order Of France. In June 2009, she was declared the Female Star of The Decade at the tenth International Indian Film Academy Awards held in Macau. In December 2010, she was declared the "Actress of the Decade" at the BIG Star Entertainment Awards.

Aishwarya is Hindu and deeply religious. Her favourite temple is a 200-year-old Lord Ganesha Temple.

In 1999 Aishwarya began dating Bollywood actor Salman Khan; their relationship was often reported in the media until the couple separated in 2001. Rai cited "abuse (verbal, physical and emotional), infidelity and indignity" on the part of Khan as a reason for ending their relationship. However, in a 2009 Times of India article Khan denied ever beating her: "It's not true that I hit a woman."

Rai is married to actor Abhishek Bachchan. Their engagement was announced on 14 January 2007 and later confirmed by his father, Amitabh Bachchan. The couple got married on 20 April 2007 according to traditional Hindu rites of the Bunt community to which she belongs. Token North Indian and Bengali ceremonies were also performed.

Awards and nominations

Filmography

1997 Iruvar, Aur Pyaar Ho Gaya
1998 Jeans
1999 Aa Ab Laut Chalen, Hum Dil De Chuke Sanam, Ravoyi Chandamama, Taal
2000 Mela, Kandukondain Kandukondain, Josh, Hamara Dil Aapke Paas Hai, Dhaai Akshar Prem Ke, Mohabbatein
2001 Albela
2002 Hum Tumhare Hain Sanam, Hum Kisi Se Kum Nahin, 23rd March 1931: Shaheed, Devdas, Shakti: The Power
2003 Chokher Bali, Dil Ka Rishta, Kuch Naa Kaho
2004 Bride & Prejudice, Khakee, Kyun...! Ho Gaya Na, Raincoat
2005 Shabd, Bunty Aur Babli, Mistress of Spices
2006 Umrao Jaan, Dhoom 2
2007 Guru, Provoked, The Last Legion
2008 Jodhaa Akbar, Sarkar Raj
2009 The Pink Panther 2
2010 Raavan, Raavanan, Enthiran, Action Replayy, Guzaarish

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