Information - english (UPDATE 28.08.2011)

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Re: Information - english (UPDATE 08.01.2011)

Postby Bolly on 28 Aug 2011, 08:21

Akshay Kumar celebrates 20 years in Bollywood - Special Feature: Part 2
By Joginder Tuteja, August 25, 2011 - 12:54 IST - bollywoodhungama.com

In Part I of this special feature, we had a look at Akshay Kumar's eventful beginning in Bollywood followed by a huge rush that he found himself in. Here is detailing his not-so-impressive middle innings followed by a revival that brought him in an altogether different bracket.

Not quite the same luck

It was obvious that law of averages would soon catch up Akshay. Perhaps Akshay too knew this and hence he continued to sign films on a relentless pace. The strike rate of successful films did go down but he continued to have at least one or two hits every year. For every Paandav or Nazar Ke Saamne that didn't work, he had a Sabse Bada Khiladi. For every Lahu Ke Do Rang and Insaaf, he had a Khiladiyon Ka Khiladi. The disappointment of a Daava or Taraazu not turning out to be a smash hit was compensated by a Tu Chor Main Sipahi.

However, the need of the hour for Akshay was to reinvent himself. Really, with half a dozen odd action films of his releasing every year, there was stagnation coming in. Akshay wasn't getting burnt out but audience for sure wanted to see something new. No wonder, they didn't whole-heartedly lap up his subsequent films like Keemat, Angaarey, Barood and Zulmi. Akshay did go through an image change by working in a negative role in Aflatoon which was complimented by some dare devil stunts in the film. The audiences had made up their mind though. Something new had to be done pronto and it was coming together of four totally different films that eventually did the trick - Sangharsh, Jaanwar, Hera Pheri and Dhadkan.

The revival

Akshay had taken the bold step of moving out of his comfort zone and for the first time in his career, he worked with a female director (Tanuja Chandra) in a sensitive dramatic fare Sangharsh. A Mahesh Bhatt film, it showed Akshay in a totally different light and though the film did just about decent business at the box office, the 'actor' managed to fetch audience's attention. Yes, finally after being in the business for a decade, Akshay was recognised as an actor with Sangharsh.

However, the great revival happened with none other than Jaanwar, a film which will go down in the annals of Bollywood history as that one event which changed the course of Akshay's career. In an emotionally ridden film where Akshay was seen as a protective father, the tagline of 'actor' was now firmly clipped to his persona. The industry saw a totally different Akshay and he was yet again back in business. The subsequent release of Hera Pheri meant that Akshay could do comedy as well. With Akshay refraining from kicks and punches for this Priyadarshan affair, the film grew quite strongly from very positive word of mouth. Hailed as a cult comedy today, Hera Pheri was a laugh riot that also resulted in Akshay laughing all the way to the bank. And if there was something that female audience were missing from Akshay, they got that in Dhadkan which turned out to be his first out and out romantic role.

The new Millennium had kick started for Akshay in a major way and gone were the B affairs that he had willingly been a part of his in his formative years. After being in the business for a decade, Akshay had finally taken complete charge of his career which he could now shape it as per his will. No, he didn't cut down on work but now there were big films that were planned with him. Ek Rishta with Amitabh Bachchan stays on to be one of his most high quality films till date and showed an emotional side of him. A success, it was followed by Ajnabee where he went mean and found accolades coming his way. He did have a couple of non-starters in Haan Maine Bhi Pyaar Kiya and Talaash but they were not threatening enough to qualify as setbacks.

Meanwhile, he didn't quite hang up his action boots. His Awara Paagal Deewana, an action comedy, was a hit while his Khakee as well as Aankhen, both being dramatic affairs, won him much appreciation as a total 'paisa vasool' hero. Aitraaz, a 'desi' take on Disclosure was yet another success up his sleeves and it was clear that the direction that he was pretty much headed towards now was towards the top.

The loyalty factor

In the middle of this immense high that Akshay was enjoying, he never forgot the people who were responsible in giving a fillip to his career. While the world believes today that he works mainly with Priyadarshan, courtesy his half a dozen films with him like Hera Pheri, Garam Masala, Bhagam Bhag, Bhool Bhulaiyaa, De Dana Dan and Khatta Meetha, the fact remains that he has worked most with another film maker who is the most unsuspecting of the lot. It is Keshu Ramsay, the man who started it all for Akshay with a lesser known film - Mr. Bond. Ever since then, he has worked him in 10 more films - Ashaant, Paandav, Sabse Bada Khiladi, Khiladiyon Ka Khiladi, Mr. And Mrs. Khiladi, International Khiladi, Khiladi 420, Khakee, Insan and Family - Ties Of Blood.

With Akshay having worked in close to 90 films in a career spanning 20 years, 11 films with a single filmmaker is a big deal in itself. However, there are many others who have enjoyed close to half a dozen films each with Akshay. Suneel Darshan has made Jaanwar, Ek Rishtaa, Haan Maine Bhi Pyaar Kiya, Andaaz, Dosti - Friends Forever and Mere Jeeven Saathi with Akshay. Vipul Shah, with an exception of London Dreams, has worked mainly with Akshay, case in point being Aankhen, Waqt, Namastey London, Singh Is Kinng and Action Replayy. Even Raj Sippy, who gave him a break with Saugandh, has worked with Akshay repeatedly in his initial years with Amaanat, Mr. Bond, Ikke Pe Ikka and Paandav arriving one after another.
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Re: Information - english (UPDATE 08.01.2011)

Postby Bolly on 28 Aug 2011, 08:23

Akshay Kumar celebrates 20 years in Bollywood - Special Feature: Part 3
By Joginder Tuteja, August 27, 2011 - 15:38 IST - bollywoodhungama.com

In Part II of this special feature, we had a look at Akshay Kumar's not-so-impressive middle innings followed by a revival that brought him in an altogether different bracket. Now in this third and concluding part, here is detailing Akshay's golden innings followed by a turnaround in progress.

The golden run

Coming back to his successful stint in the mid-2000s, this was the time when Shah Rukh had found the King Khan title for himself. Though Akshay never claimed that he wanted to find a position up in the top slot, the fact remains that he was pretty much turning out to be a serious contender for that. The going was wonderful with big successes coming his way every year. 2004 (Khakee, Mujhse Shaadi Karogi), 2005 (Waqt, Garam Masala), 2006 (Phir Hera Pheri, Bhagam Bhag) and especially 2007 (Heyy Babyy, Namastey London, Bhool Bhulaiyaa, Welcome) were rocking for him and there was just one more blockbuster waiting to happen before formal announcements would have finally been made.

Singh Is Kinng released in 2008 and became a major success. Now if at all Shah Rukh Khan (Rab Ne Bana Di Jodi) and Aamir Khan (Ghajini) wouldn't have seen bigger successes in the same year, Akshay would have occupied the top slot quite comfortably. One suspected that he would actually manage to top it all with his upcoming releases but 2009 turned out to be a mixed year that proved to be a spanner in his plans.

That dated feeling

In the middle of it all, Akshay has also ensured that even his dated films are completed and released. No wonder, even when he was peaking as a star, Akshay had films like Police Force, Hatya - The Murderer and Meri Biwi Ka Jawab Nahi releasing between 2004-2005. While the fate of his other delayed film Hello India (earlier known as Purab Ki Laila Paschim Ka Chaila) is still unknown, one can be rest assured that there would indeed be a surprise up his sleeves.

A bumpy ride

However 2009 wasn't quite a happy hunting ground for Akshay to begin with, what with his much hyped Chandni Chowk To China not quite doing well. Pretty much touted to be an affair that would win east as well as west, it was given a cold shoulder by critics and audience. The film failed at the box office and what made matters worse was the debacle of 8X10 Tasveer where he was seen in a different light as a serious actor.

Kambakkht Ishq was a reasonable success and though it did take the biggest opening ever of his career, it didn't stay on to become a much needed super-hit that he was looking for. Blue too enjoyed all the moolah mainly due to its opening and ultimately it was left to laugh riot De Dana Dan that turned out to be a reasonable success for Akshay, hence bringing on smiles before the end of year.

All his hopes were now on Housefull to become that much needed money spinner that would join the likes of Welcome and Singh Is Kinng. Fortunately for him, that happened as well in early 2010 as this Sajid Khan directed affair took a record opening for an Akshay starrer. The film was a clean hit and though the film that followed, Khatta Meetha, was average at the box office, Akshay was breathing easy again. He had all the right reasons to do that. But then Action Replayy didn't quite result in a cracker of a Diwali for him while Tees Maar Khan too had to settle down as a coverage affair after a very good opening weekend.

A turnaround ahead

Meanwhile, Akshay decided to mix up genres in the coming months. So even though Patiala House didn't quite set the cash registers running, Akshay saw some of the best reviews coming his way in the recent times. Delivering a subtle performance which was acknowledged and appreciated by all those who saw the film, Akshay started 2011 on a good note critically at the least. On the other hand, his commercial outing Thank You, despite a slow start, eventually managed to sustain itself to an extent that was good enough to keep everyone's head over water.

Months to come promise to be far more exciting though with Desi Boyz in pipeline. Touted to be a fun entertainer, the film is also special as it brings back the Garam Masala jodi of Akshay-John. Joker has 3D as well as sci-fi meets fantasy as its USP while Sanjay Leela Bhansali-Prabhu Deva flick Rowdy Rathore brings him back into an out and out action outing. Once Upon A Time In Mumbaai 2 is a sequel which is being most awaited by many out there with a definite bonus element being Akshay Kumar who would be stepping into an altogether different territory with this one.

With reinvention being the name of the game here, one looks forward to Akshay Kumar seeing a massive turnaround to his name in next couple of years to come, with an all-important element - choice of different subjects, genres and teams - making all the difference.
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