Often called the most beautiful woman in the world, Aishwarya Rai arrived on the scene in 1994, when she won the runner's up title at the Miss India pageant and went on to win the Miss World crown. In 1997, she made her movie debut with Mani Ratnam's Tamil film 'Iruvar'. Her performance in 1999's 'Hum Dil De Chuke Sanam' earned Aishwarya critical and commercial acclaim. She also met Salman Khan while on one of those typical SLB "pallu-catches-fire" routines, and gave the media some spicy Page 3 fodder.
In 2001, Aishwarya broke up with Salman and, according (only) to Vivek Oberoi, entered an interim orbit with him.
Aishwarya is one of the few Indian actors who have found fame overseas. With films such as 'Bride and Prejudice' and 'Pink Panther 2', as well as appearances on the Oprah Winfrey and the David Letterman shows, Aishwarya became a well-known face, if not a household name, around the world. Time magazine included her in the world's 100 most influential people in 2004 and London's Madame Tussaud's Wax Museum installed a wax statue of her.
In April, 2007, Aishwarya married beau Abhishek Bachchan in what was supposed to be a private wedding but in fact turned into a national extravaganza! Two and a half years later, they are one of Bollywood's power couples, appearing in feature films as well television commercials.