Aishwarya Rai (born 1 November 1973 in Mangalore, Karnataka), known as Aishwarya Rai Bachchan after her marriage, is an Indian actress and the winner of the Miss World pageant of 1994.
Through her successful Bollywood career, she has established herself as one the most popular and high-profile celebrities in India. Rai has received several awards, including two Filmfare Awards from ten nominations. She was awarded 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. She is cited in the media as the "most beautiful woman in the world".
While in college, Rai did a few modelling assignments. Following appearances in several television commercials, she entered into the Miss India pageant, in which she placed second. She was then crowned Miss World 1994, after which she began receiving offers to act in film. She made her acting debut with the 1997 Tamil film Iruvar and had her first Hindi film release in Aur Pyaar Ho Gaya that same year.
Her first commercial success was the Tamil romantic drama Jeans (1998), following which she achieved wider success with her collaborations with the filmmaker Sanjay Leela Bhansali in Hum Dil De Chuke Sanam (1999) and Devdas (2002). She won two Best Actress awards at Filmfare for her performances in them. Rai's greatest commercial successes have been the adventure film Dhoom 2 (2006), the historical romance Jodhaa Akbar (2008), and the science fiction film Enthiran (2010).
She garnered critical appreciation for portraying Rabindranath Tagore's heroine, Binodini, in Rituparno Ghosh's Bengali film Chokher Bali (2003), a depressed woman in Ghosh's relationship drama Raincoat (2004), and a nurse in Bhansali's drama Guzaarish (2010).
In 1999, Rai 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 reasons for ending the relationship. In a 2009 Times of India article, Khan denied ever beating her: "It's not true that I hit a woman."
Though they both appeared in Dhai Akshar Prem Ke (in which her then longtime boyfriend, Salman Khan, had a brief cameo) and Kuch Naa Kaho, Abhishek Bachchan fell in love with Aishwarya whilst filming Dhoom 2. Their engagement was announced on 14 January 2007 and later confirmed by his father, Amitabh Bachchan.
The couple 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. The wedding took place in a private ceremony at the Bachchan residence, "Prateeksha", in Juhu, Mumbai. They have been described as a supercouple in the Indian media. Rai is very close to her family and lived with them in Bandra, Mumbai, until her marriage. Rai is Hindu and deeply religious.
Her international presence shot up when Abhishek Bachchan accompanied her to the Cannes Film festival shortly after their marriage, and later to The Oprah Winfrey Show, appearing on 28 September 2009. They were described as being more famous as a couple than Brangelina. Rai gave birth to a baby girl on 16 November 2011.
Her daughter became popularly known by the name of "Beti B", a name attributed to her by fans and the media, since the couple took over four months to name their daughter. The baby girl was finally named Aaradhya Bachchan in March 2012.
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