Aishwarya Rai & Abhishek Bachchan

Between her star wattage (a former Miss World, she has acted in over 30 movies) and his dazzling pedigree (his father is Bollywood legend Amitabh Bachchan), it’s a wonder the couple hasn’t spontaneously combusted. The two have acted together before, but it wasn’t until Guru, this year’s rags-to-riches film about one of India’s most successful entrepreneurs, that they scored at the box office. Their wedding, however, was an insta-hit: The megastars got hitched in April, whipping the Indian media, who dubbed the affair “the wedding of the century,” into a frenzy. The  nuptials had all the drama of a Bollywood musical: Bachchan riding in on a white stallion, choreographed dances, even a suicidal fan, claiming to be a spurned lover of the groom’s, who slit her wrists outside and was arrested—in India, suicide is a crime.

Mommy Dearest: Until she married, Rai, now 34, still lived with her parents. “Back home, you’re a loser if you say, ‘Mom, I’m out of here,’” she has said. “In India, it’s more about the family … about remaining connected.”

This article was originally published at . Reprinted with permission from the author.