Bollywood actor Aishwarya Rai Bachchan has reportedly zeroed in on her next project and it is none other than Mani Ratnam who will direct the upcoming film. Interestingly, Aishwarya is likely to play a negative character in the period drama that will be based on the historical Tamil novel by Kalki, Ponniyin Selvan. She has earlier played a negative role in Khakhee.
A Mid Day report quoted a source as saying, “The story takes place in the 10th century before Raja Raja Chola became a king. Aishwarya will be seen as Nandini, the wife of Periya Pazhuvettaraiyar, who served as the chancellor and treasurer of the Chola kingdom. Her character is written as a mysterious, power-hungry woman who manipulates her husband to plan the downfall of the Chola empire because she has been wronged by them.”
The novel is based on the life of Arulmozhi Varman who became the great Chola emperor.
Mani was reportedly planning the film for almost a decade. The film on Ponniyin Selvan is going to be huge with Vikram, Simbu, Jayam Ravi joining the team. Amala Paul was also rumoured to have come onboard. Sources earlier told Hindustan Times that pre-production work has already begun and huge sets are currently being erected for the film that is likely to go on floors by 2019 end. .
Earlier this year, reports claimed Amitabh Bachchan may also join his daughter-in-law for the Mani Ratnam project. This will be 11 years after their last film, Sarkar Raj, that the duo will be seen together. The former Miss World also had a special dance number Kajra Re with Amitabh and husband Abhishek Bachchan in Bunty Aur Babli (2005).
After her last outing with Anil Kapoor and Rajkummar Rao – Fanney Khan, Aishwarya has not officially announced any project.