:::: Akshay Kumar Biodata
Akshay Kumar – born name Rajiv Hari Om Bhatia, on September 9, 1967 is an Indian film actor. He has appeared in over 80 Hindi language films, the industry being also known as Bollywood.
During the 90s, Kumar was primarily described as the action hero of Bollywood, starring in hit action films such as Khiladi (1992), Mohra (1994) and Sabse Bada Khiladi (1995), and being particularly known for his “Khiladi Series”. However, he was simultaneously recognised for his performances in romantic films like Yeh Dillagi (1994) and Dhadkan (2000) as well as dramatic films such as Ek Rishtaa (2001), showing his versatility to perform a range of roles.
In 2002, he won his first Filmfare Award under the Best Villain category, for his performance in Ajnabee (2001). Willing to change his intransigent image, Kumar later ventured mostly into comedy films. His comic performances in films such as Hera Pheri (2000), Mujhse Shaadi Karogi (2004), Garam Masala (2005) and Jaan-E-Mann (2006) met with critical acclaim. His success came to its peak in 2007, when he starred in four consecutive commercial hits. Having done so, he has thus established himself as one of the prominent actors of the Hindi film industry.
Rajiv Hari Om Bhatia was born to a middle class Punjabi family in Amritsar (Punjab). His father was a government worker. From a very young age, he was recognised as a performer, particularly as a dancer. Kumar was raised in Delhi’s Chandni Chowk neighbourhood before moving to Mumbai. In Mumbai, he lived in Koliwada, which was another Punjabi dominated area. He studied at Don Bosco School and then Khalsa College, where he took an interest in sports.
He studied martial arts in Bangkok and worked as a Chef. He then came back to Mumbai, where he started teaching martial arts. One of his students happened to be a photographer and recommended him to do modelling. The student gave him a modelling assignment for a small company. For his two hours posing in front of the camera, Kumar got Rs. 5,000, compared to his previous salary of Rs. 4,000 in one month. That was one of the main reasons why he chose to be a model. After a couple of months of modelling, Kumar was finally offered a lead role by producer Pramod Chakravarthy for the movie Deedar.
Kumar made his Bollywood acting debut with the 1991 film Saugandh, which was unnoticed. His first major hit was the 1992 thriller film Khiladi. 1993 saw a drop as many of his films failed to do well. However, 1994 proved to be a good year for Kumar as he followed up his success with Khiladi with the action films Main Khiladi Tu Anari and Mohra which were among the highest grossing films of the year. Later that year, Yash Chopra signed him for the romantic film Yeh Dillagi which was also a success. He received appreciation for his performance in this film, where he played a romantic role which was different compared to his action roles. He would consequently receive his first nominations for Best Actor award at the Filmfare and Star Screen ceremonies. All these achievements, promoted Kumar as one of the most successful actors of that year. In 1995, along with his share of unsuccessful movies, he starred in the third film in his Khiladi series Sabse Bada Khiladi, which was a hit. He proved to have success with the Khiladi series, as in the next year he starred in the fourth hit film with Khiladi in the title, Khiladiyon Ka Khiladi opposite Rekha and Raveena Tandon. The film became one of the highest grossing films of the year.
In 1997, he made an extended guest appearance in Yash Chopra’s hit film Dil To Pagal Hai, for which he received a Filmfare Best Supporting Actor Award nomination. In the same year, he attempted a comedy role with the fifth film in the Khiladi series, Mr and Mrs Khiladi. Unlike his previous films with Khiladi in the title, the film failed commercially. In the same way as this film, his next Khiladi releases in the following years went on to fail at the box office. In 1999, Kumar received critical acclaim for his roles in the films Sangharsh and Jaanwar. Whilst the former did not make a profit at the box office, the latter turned out to be a success.
In 2000 he starred in the comedy Hera Pheri (2000) which was both a critical and commercial success, and showcased his ability at doing comedy just as he did action and romantic roles. He also starred in the romantic film Dhadkan later that same year which also earned reasonable takings at the box office. In 2001, Kumar played a negative role in the film Ajnabee. The film won him much acclaim as well as his first Filmfare Award for Best Villain.
Following the success of Hera Pheri, Kumar starred in a number of comedy films, including Awara Paagal Deewana (2002), Mujhse Shaadi Karogi (2004) and Garam Masala (2005). The film went on to succeed at the box office, and his performance in the later earned him his second Filmfare Award for Best Comedian.
Apart from his action, comedy and romantic roles, Kumar displayed a flair for dramatic roles in films such as Ek Rishtaa (2001), Aankhen (2002), Bewafaa (2005) and Waqt: The Race Against Time (2005).
In 2006 he starred in a sequel to Hera Pheri titled Phir Hera Pheri. As was the former, the sequel became a huge success at the box office. Later that year he starred alongside Salman Khan in the romantic musical Jaan-E-Mann. The film was a well anticipated release, and despite receiving positive reviews from critics, did not do as well as expected at the box office. Though the film under-performed, his role as a shy, lovable nerd was praised. He ended the year with the comedy Bhagam Bhag, which was a success. In that same year, he led the Heat 2006 world tour along with fellow stars Saif Ali Khan, Preity Zinta, Sushmita Sen and Celina Jaitley.
2007 proved to be Kumar’s most successful year during his career in the industry, and as described by box office analysts, “probably the best ever recorded by an actor, with four outright hits and no flops.” His first release, Namastey London, was critically and commercially successful. Critic Taran Adarsh wrote of his performance in the film, “he’s sure to win the hearts of millions of moviegoers with a terrific portrayal in this film.” His next two releases, Heyy Babyy and Bhool Bhulaiyaa, both received super hit verdicts at the box office as well. Kumar’s last release of the year, Welcome, did extremely well at the box office, receiving a blockbuster status and simultaneously becoming his fifth successive hit. All of Kumar’s films which released that year did well in the overseas market as well.
During his years in Bollywood, Kumar was romantically linked with several of his co-star actresses like Raveena Tandon, Shilpa Shetty and Priyanka Chopra. After being engaged twice to actress Twinkle Khanna, the daughter of veteran actors Rajesh Khanna and Dimple Kapadia, he finally married her on January 14, 2001. Their son named Aarav was born on September 15, 2002.
In 2007, a leading Mumbai tabloid newspaper printed a story saying that Kumar and his wife had fallen out and Kumar had moved out of his home, staying at a hotel instead. On July 26, 2007 the couple sent a legal notice to the tabloid, declaring that the rumour was false. Kumar said:
“ The article is a clear representation of careless and irresponsible journalism. The freedom of press comes with responsibilities, which seems to have been put aside to give way to shock value journalism.