With Aishwarya Rai (temporarily?) out of the picture, Kareena Kapoor has happily cemented herself as Bollywood’s leading heroine. She’s being handed Aishwarya’s old roles left and right and is probably in no mood to see Aish return to form any time soon!
Everyone knows, of course, that Aishwarya was originally slated to play the lead role in Madhur Bhandarkar’s Heroine, but now Kareena is the star. In the end it probably won’t prove to be a big loss for AishwaryaÂ—Bhandarkar’s films tend to wind up being unintentionally hilarious (and really just plain awfulÂ—remember Fashion?), and Aishwarya’s probably fine with letting Kareena make a fool of herself in this one.
But now Kareena has snatched the lead role in Sanjay Leela Bhansali’s Ram Leela, and some are starting to wonder if directors are simply unwilling to wait for Aishwarya anymore. The new mum had hinted at taking at least one year off to raise her daughter, Aaradhya, and top directors had indicated that they’d be happy to wait for her return before starting new projects. Talk of her starring in Bajirao Mastani with Shahrukh Khan floated about, but that role may now be going to Sonam Kapoor. And now Kareena has bagged Bhansali’s Ram Leela opposite Ranveer Singh, a role which many thought might have gone to Aishwarya by virtue of her relationship with the director (for whom she starred in Devdas).
Clearly Aishwarya’s absence has allowed Kareena to blossom. Will Aishwarya be able to reassert herself once she returns to films, or has Kareena officially driven her out?
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