In the year 2010, ace filmmaker Mani Ratnam released two versions of his film Raavanan in Tamil and Raavan in Hindi. The Hindi version featured an ensemble cast including Chiyaan Vikram, Abhishek Bachchan and Aishwarya Rai Bachchan. The Tamil version, however, saw Vikram, Prithviraj Sukumaran and Aishwarya Rai. Instead of going by the traditional way of just dubbing the movie in different languages or adding subtitles for the audience, he decided to completely reshoot the movie with different actors but what remained the same was the presence of Aishwarya Rai. The actress played the role of Sita in both the films.
Raavan, which had a unique take on the epic Ramayana and also addressed Stockholm syndrome in the second half. In the Tamil. version, Vikram portrayed a character inspired by Lankan king Raavan while Prithviraj played a character inspired by Lord Ram. In the Hindi version, Vikram crossed over to play Prithviraj's character while Abhishek Bachchan was played the antagonist.
Interestingly, a cinephile Instagram account shared an edit of Aishwarya in Raavanan and Raavan. In the parallel videos, one frame has her dancing with Vikram and on the other with Prithviraj.
Undoubtedly, fans were left in awe to witness Aishwarya's greceful dance and impeccable acting skills. They also praised the choreography by Shobana Chandrakumar Pillai.One of the fans wrote, "I also felt that this choreography done by someone that I familiar..now I got that style..only one ..the one and only. shobhana ma'am." The other said, "For the longest time I was hoping someone would make side by side clips of Raavan and Raavanan. The fact that Mani Sir made the entire movie twice and each scene looks so perfectly similar albeit with different actors is truly fascinating to me!"
On a related note, Aishwarya and Mani Ratnam are reportedly working together again on Ponniyin Selvan. The film is a historical epic based on Kalki Krishnamurthy's novel.