Aishwarya Rai Bachchan is one of Bollywood’s leading brand ambassadors and her relationships with names like L’Oreal, Longines, and Kalyan Jewelers are well known. But it’s now being suggested that Aishwarya may be finding herself pushed aside in favor of younger faces. Is “the most beautiful woman in the world” getting too old to hold onto her top endorsements?
An October 4 analysis on the website DNA of celebrity endorsements notes that Bollywood’s older generation is slowly being replaced by fresh new faces who are better able to connect with the brands’ target audiences. Examples include Priyanka Chopra and Kareena Kapoor, who have seen some of their marquee endorsements handed over to Alia Bhatt, a fresh-faced youngster with just a handful of (very well received) films under her belt; Juhi Chawla and Katrina Kaif, who have lost work to Parineeti Chopra; and John Abraham, who lost his Garnier account to Sushant Singh Rajput and another endorsement to Arjun Kapoor.
And what about Aishwarya Rai Bachchan? She’s long been the face of L’Oreal and has famously represented them at the Cannes Film Festival. But as she (temporarily) wound down her acting career in order to raise her young daughter, L’Oreal began adding new names to their roster. Soon Aishwarya was joined by Freida Pinto, Sonam Kapoor, and most recently Katrina Kaif on the list of L’Oreal Paris’s Indian spokesmodels.
What does this mean for Aishwarya? In light of the trend of older actors losing endorsements to new names, should Aishwarya be concerned about her place as a leading brand ambassador? Is it possible that brands may begin to feel that she’s too old to represent their products?
Brand expert Harish Bijoor is quoted in the analysis as saying that male stars have a shelf life of around nine years, whereas female stars are only seen as viable by brands for about four years (a decline from the previous seven year shelf life the earlier generation previously enjoyed). Aishwarya has served as a brand ambassador for L’Oreal Paris for eleven years–is her time up?
Probably not. Despite her absence from films (her much-anticipated comeback film, “Jazbaa,” will premiere at the 2015 Cannes Film Festival) Aishwarya continues to dominate in terms of both power and prestige within the film industry, and international brands hoping to gain footing in India would be crazy to let her go. It’s safe to say that Aishwarya’s many lucrative endorsements are safe for quite some time to come.