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Akshay Kumar
Also known as: Khiladi of Bollywood, Akki, Mac, Rajiv Hari Om Bhatia
Actor • Special Appearances • Producer • Voice Cast • Executive Producer
Born: September 9, 1967 in Punjab, India
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About
Akshay Kumar is an Indian actor, TV host, and producer who is known as the Khiladi of Bollywood because he has been part of over eight movies with the word Khiladi in it. Before entering Bollywood, the actor was an aspiring martial artist and was in Bangkok to study the art form. While there, he pursued cooking for a living. From being a cook in Bangkok to becoming a famous Bollywood star, Akshay Kumar is a role model for those who dream big. He made his mark in the industry on sheer talent and hard work, despite his good looks and pleasant personality. He first came into the limelight with the movie Khiladi and went on to become a top Bollywood actor with Yeh Dillagi.

Kumar has also appeared on television and has hosted reality adventure series Fear Factor - Khatron Ke Khiladi, and also launched a dance reality show called Dare 2 Dance. In the year 2008, the actor started his own production company called Hari Om Productions. Under this banner, Akshay Kumar co-produced several movies, in which he appeared too, such as Singh Is Kinng, Action Replayy, and Tees Maar Khan, to name a few. In 2011, Kumar co-founded another film and TV production house, Grazing Goat Pictures, and its first project was OMG - Oh My God!, which he co-starred with actor Paresh Rawal.

He is best remembered for his roles in Namastey London, Hera Pheri, Mujhse Shaadi Karogi, Bhool Bhulaiyaa, and Airlift among many others. From drama and action to comedy, Akshay Kumar is one actor who`s done it all.

He has been honored with the Rajiv Gandhi Award in 2004 for his great contributions to Bollywood and has also been awarded the Padma Shri in 2009, the fourth highest civilian award in India, for his contribution to Indian cinema. The University of Windsor recognized his contribution to Indian cinema by presenting to him an Honorary Doctorate of Law.

EARLY LIFE

Born as Rajeev Bhatia on 9th September 1967 to Hari Om Bhatia and Aruna Bhatia, in Amritsar, Akshay Kumar grew up in Old Delhi`s Chandni Chowk area. He later moved to Mumbai where he completed his schooling from Don Bosco School, after which he joined Guru Nanak Khalsa College for his higher education. However, he dropped out and traveled to Bangkok to learn martial arts. In Bangkok, he learned Muay Thai, a form of martial arts, while working as a chef and waiter. After returning to Mumbai, Akshay Kumar began teaching martial arts.

PERSONAL LIFE

The actor has had a series of alleged affairs and link-ups before he tied the knot with Rajesh Khanna and Dimple Kapadia`s elder daughter Twinkle Khanna in 2001. Much before getting married, Akshay was apparently dating the then well-known model Pooja Batra. The two were in a relationship before Akshay entered the industry.

Upon starting his career in Bollywood, he allegedly started dating his Khiladi co-star Ayesha Jhulka. But it was his affair with the 90`s bombshell Raveena Tandon that grabbed the limelight.

However, after he split with Raveena, he started dating Shilpa Shetty. The two created magic on-screen and their romance bloomed off-screen too. The Khiladi then tied the knot with Twinkle Khanna and the two have two children together - Aarav and Nitara.

The Khiladi follows a disciplined lifestyle and makes it a point to wake up before sunrise and practice kickboxing, basketball, Parkour, and martial arts to stay fit.

ACTING CAREER

When Kumar returned to Mumbai after his martial arts training, he began teaching the art form. He then tried his luck at modeling when a student of his pursued him to give it a shot, paving his way into Bollywood. He enjoyed modeling for a brief period, assisted photographer Jayesh Seth, and also worked as a background dancer and stunt actor before producer Pramod Chakravarthy signed him for his movie Deedar. However, he was first seen on the big screen in the 1991 release Saugandh opposite Raakhee and Shantipriya. After his debut, he was seen in Dancer, which failed to garner him any praises. It was only after he was signed by Abbas-Mustan in their suspense-thriller Khiladi that he received fame and appreciation.

After a series of commercially unsuccessful movies, Akshay Kumar was seen in Main Khiladi Tu Anari and Mohra in 1994. In the same year, he appeared in Yash Chopra`s Yeh Dillagi, which earned him a Filmfare nomination for Best Actor. After having delivered 11 movies in the year 1994, of which most were hit, he emerged as a successful actor.

The Khiladi received critical acclaim for his performances in movies like Sangharsh and Jaanwar, which marked his comeback after a couple of flop films. After being a part of action, thriller, suspense, romance, and drama movies, the actor stepped into the genre of comedy with director Priyadarshan`s Hera Pheri, which marked a turning point in his career. He was then seen donning a negative role in Abbas-Mustan`s suspense-thriller Ajnabee, which won him the Filmfare Award for Best Villain and IIFA Award for Performance in a Negative Role. Kumar then appeared in Mujhse Shaadi Karogi in 2004. However, it was his performance in Aitraaz which was one of his best performances in that year.

After delivering innumerable brilliant performances and being a part of many movies, the year 2007 proved to be the most successful year for him. He appeared in hit films like Namastey London, Heyy Babyy, Bhool Bhulaiyaa and Welcome, all of which were commercially successful movies. Despite a number of hits, Kumar featured in movies that bombed at the box office like Farah Khan`s Tees Maar Khan, From Chandni Chowk To China, Joker and Action Replayy.

The actor was then seen doing content-heavy movies such as Special Chabbis, Baby, Gabbar Is Back, and Holiday: A Soldier Is Never Off Duty. In 2016, Akshay was seen in two real-life stories, Airlift and Rustom, for which he was awarded the National Film Award for Best Actor in 2017. The next year, in 2017, Kumar was cast in the second installment of the Jolly LL.B series titled The State vs Jolly LL.B 2 or commonly called just Jolly LLB 2.

Reprising the role of Ajay Singh Rajput, Akshay was seen in the 2017 action thriller Naam Shabana. His other projects for the year include the satirical comedy Toilet - Ek Prem Katha. In 2018, he featured in Padman. The same year, he was seen alongside the superstar of Tamil cinema Rajinikanth in 2.0, the sequel to the 2010 fantasy action Robot. Further, Akshay was seen in Reema Kagti`s sports history drama Gold.

In 2019, Akshay starred in the movie Kesari. His other project in the same year includes Housefull 4. Akshay`s 2020 release includes Laxmii. He has also co-produced Durgamati (2020). His other releases include Bell Bottom (2021), Sooryavanshi (2021), Atrangi Re (2021), Prithviraj (2022), Bachchan Pandey (2022), Ram Setu (2022) and Raksha Bandhan (2022).
Peers & More
Shah Rukh Khan
Actor
Salman Khan
Actor
Aamir Khan
Actor
Ajay Devgn
Actor
Family
Twinkle Khanna
Spouse
Aarav Kumar
Son
Nitara Kumar
Daughter
Aruna Bhatia
Mother
Hari Om Bhatia
Father
Alka Bhatia
Sister
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Did You Know? (18)

  • Reportedly, Imran Khan`s character of a sassy womanizer in I Hate Luv Story has been inspired by Akshay Kumar.
  • 2.0 (2018) marked Akshay Kumar's debut in Tamil cinema.
  • Akshay Kumar worked as a chef and waiter in Bangkok before becoming a superstar.
  • Akshay Kumar was also a martial art teacher and it was during one of the martial art classes that one of his students suggested that he try modelling.
  • Akshay Kumar has named his daughter Nitara Rajesh Khanna to honour his late father-in-law Rajesh Khanna.
  • Akshay Kumar's original name is Rajeev Bhatia. He decided to stick to the name Akshay post his role in the film Aag.
  • Although he made his debut in 1987, Akshay Kumar's first award was the Best Villain Award for the movie Ajnabee (2001).
  • Akshay Kumar is known for his disciplined life. He reportedly wakes up at 5 am in the morning, everyday.
  • Akshay Kumar launched his production house Grazing Goats to support low budget films.
  • Akshay Kumar keeps his body fit through running, martial arts and kickboxing. He avoids weightlifting completely.
  • Akshay Kumar is a black belt in Taekwondo and specialises in Muay Thai, a combat sport popular in Thailand.
  • Akshay Kumar worked as an assistant to ace photographer Jayesh Seth to earn enough money for his portfolio shoot.
  • Akshay Kumar is known for doing most of his film stunts without any body double.
  • After 30 years of being in the industry, Akshay Kumar was honored with his first National Film Award for Best Actor for his performance in the movie Rustom.
  • Akshay Kumar was the initial choice to play Salman Khan's brother in Tubelight. However, Kabir Khan decided against it and cast Sohail Khan since he thought that it would be easier for the real-life brothers to create that kind of camaraderie on screen.
  • Akshay Kumar was keen on playing the role of M. S. Dhoni but was turned down by director Neeraj Pandey since he wanted to cast someone who looked similar to Dhoni.
  • There are several references in Jolly LLB 2 to its predecessor. In the courtroom scene where Akshay Kumar's character introduces himself as Jolly, the judge (played by Saurabh Shukla) quips whether he has a brother living in Delhi. This is a direct reference to Arshad Warsi's character from Jolly LLB (2013).
  • Akshay Kumar had auditioned for Deepak Tijori's role in the Jo Jeeta Wohi Sikander (1992), but he was rejected.
  • Personal Quotes (12)

  • "Superstars come and go. I want to make sure I am always a producer's actor. I may be refused to be called a great actor but I have never troubled any of my producers in my life. Honesty always catches the camera, and that is what my strength is."
  • "I'm not hungry for success. I am only hungry for good work, and that is how it is with most superstars. Every day I tell myself how fortunate I am to be where I am."
  • "When you taste super-success after tasting super-failure, there is huge relief."
  • "Why bother with Google when I have a wife who knows everything about everything!"
  • "I'm from a land where people make mistakes and try again, harder, faster; where negativity is not an option."
  • "Work is work, but family is for life. That's what really matters to me."
  • "It's the best thing if your work is your passion in life. It makes me feel like I'm always on break."
  • "Each one of us has his own place in the industry. I've been able to prove that you don't necessarily have to be a Khan to be successful."
  • "To be honest, I had learnt martial arts for a girl. So I started learning the art to impress, but eventually I started loving martial arts more than the girl."
  • "It drives me nuts how I rely on my wife for everything. I can't imagine a day without her."
  • "Always think twice before you decide to do anything for a film. It may seem like a career-changing idea, but think of your family and your future before doing anything risky. Train properly, because looking strong and being strong are two different things."
  • "I'll do at least one action film every year because of my fans. This is my promise to them."
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