Tuesday, February 12, 2008

India’s first international movie stars?

Looks like Anupama Chopra's (who recently did the biography of Shah Rukh Khan) next book will be on Aishwarya Rai.

Just as Jodhaa Akbar is poised to release this Friday, she has penned a cross-over piece on Aish and her co-star, Hrithik Roshan, in the NYT. She describes the two stars in a special way: "Both actors, to steal the phrase Pauline Kael invented to describe Michelle Pfeiffer, are “paradisically beautiful,” and are consummate superstars. With their ethnically indeterminate looks and impeccable English, Ms. Bachchan and Mr. Roshan could be India’s first international movie stars."

Here's the intro which is as dramatic as it gets:

LAST October Aishwarya Bachchan grappled with a tough choice. The Bollywood star could either stay in Los Angeles to pursue a lead role in Will Smith’s new film, “Seven Pounds,” or she could return home to Mumbai to celebrate Karva Chauth, a daylong ceremonial fast that some married Hindu women observe as a prayer for their husband’s health and long life. (The observance is a new one for Ms. Bachchan; in April she married Abhishek Bachchan, an actor and the son of the Indian film star Amitabh Bachchan, a union that prompted Time magazine to describe the three as “Bollywood’s Father, Son and Holy Babe.”)

Ultimately Ms. Bachchan chose to return to Mumbai and starve with a smile. National television channels covered her first Karva Chauth as headline news. Two months later she shrugged off her loss in an interview. “You do what you have to do,” she said. “Feeling torn and thereby unhappy, confused or guilty is not something I want to feel. So you make your choices and go with it. You get some and some you don’t.”


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