Aishwarya Rai Bachchan (née Aishwarya Rai, Tulu: ???????? ??, Ai?varya Rai ?, pronounced [?j???rja? r?j]; 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, Rai appeared alongside Shahrukh Khan and Madhuri Dixit in Sanjay Leela Bhansali’s Devdas, an adaptation of Sharat Chandra Chattopadhyay’s famous novel by the same name. She played the role of Paro (Parvati), the love interest of the protagonist, played by Khan. The film received a special screening at the Cannes Film Festival. It became the highest-grossing film of the year in both India and overseas, earning a revenue of Rs 390 million domestically. Devdas won numerous awards, including 10 Filmfare Awards, and Rai received her second Filmfare Best Actress Award for her performance.
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.