Aishwarya Rai Bachchan and Priyanka Chopra are considered to be actresses from two different eras. However, there was one instance when director Ashutosh Gowariker publicly insulted PeeCee for Aishwarya.
During 2009 IIFA awards show, Priyanka had won the best actress award for her performance in Fashion. Aishwarya too had won a nomination for the movie Jodha Akhar, directed by Ashutosh.
However, Priyanka walked away with the award, which did not go down well with the filmmaker. After the Bajirao Mastani actress had collected her award, Ashutosh went on to the stage to accept best director award for Jodha Akbar.
In his speech, the the director made certain comments that left all present there shocked. "Priyanka I love you, but I don't know how you got the award for Best Actress when Aishwarya was also nominated in the same category for Jodha Akbar," he had said.
After making that controversial statement, Ashutosh realised that he went a little too far, and tried to dilute the situation saying, "Maybe it is because you are very hard-working and she is a natural". He had even dragged Aishwarya's mother-in-law Jaya Bachchan saying that even the veteran actress was asking him the same thing.
However, the damage had already been done, as Priyanka reportedly gave a miss to the after-event party that was held at Abhishek Bachchan and his wife Aishwary's suite. But Priyanka was discreet enough not to react to Ashutosh's comments at the award show.
While the director's comments had made much controversy then, a lot was talked about he "unnecessarily" dragging Jaya into the matter. However, Jaya had later clarified that she actually wanted him to raise the issue.
"First of all it is being presumed that Ashutosh unnecessarily mentioned my name regarding Aishwarya's omission from the awards. The fact is, I suggested he bring up the question on stage at IIFA. We were discussing why Aishwarya has not been given any award for Jodha Akbar and I suggested Ashutosh bring up the matter. So when he mentioned my name he wasn't doing anything wrong," Jaya had told a popular daily then.
However, she had also said that she had no objection in Priyanka winning the award, but wondered why Aishwarya's performance was ignored.