10th February 2020

Is Ayushmann Khurrana The New Akshay Kumar?

Not to suggest that Akshay Kumar’s career  is reaching a closure.  Far from it. But I see uncanny similarities  in the  career trajectories  of  the two AKs,  Ayushmann Khurrana  and AkshayKumar.

To begin at the end they  both had the optimum number of hits  in 2019: Akshay led with 4, Ayushmann followed with  3. But  apart from the  boxoffice there are  more than coincidental resemblances  in the personalities  of the two stars, and since I know both fairly well I can vouch for the similarities.

They are  both family-oriented North Indians, Punjabis  to  be more specific,  with  a huge  affinity to  ground-level reality. Neither will either  ever  fit into the  mould of the typical Bollywoodsupertstar—not in the way they  conduct themselves—even if they are. Superstars,I mean.

Looking at  their  family lives too, I see an uncanny resemblance. Both are married to intelligent highly articulate women who are  personalities of their own independent of their Mrs Superstar status.Ayushmann’s better-half Tahira  is about to embark  on  a career as a filmmaker.Akshay’s wife Twinkle is a one-time(reluctant) actress  and a  full-time author, columnist and  mother  of two.

Also Read:  Nawazuddin On The Pleasure Of Farming

….Tahira and Ayushman too are  proud parents to two bright kids,a son and a daughter whom  they want to keep out  of the limelight as much as possible.Akshay’s son wants to be  a chef . Ayushmann’s son is too young to know what he wants in life. Come to think it, even Ayushmanndidn’t know what he wanted  out  of his career. He  confessed to me   during one of our conversations that  the image of  the working-class hero happened  willy-nilly. He  was  only doing the films that were offered  to him.

Akshay too didn’t plan his career . Initially he accepted everything that came  his way.Until SuneelDarshan’s Jaanwar, Akshay’s career was  pretty  direction-less.  This, Ayushmann would never do. If  push came  to shove he would avoid making  mistakes  like Saugandh, Deedaar and  Mr Bond  from  the initial part  of  Akshay’s career. Today’s  Akshay, yaane ke Ayushmann is a far  more confident soul , secure in his space and not  afraid to  let go for a while. After  three hits in 2019 and three more ready for release  he has taken three month  off to be with his wife and  family.

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Otherwise, he joked, his children would not recognize him any more,. That brings me  to  to another  similarity between the two Punjabi superstars. They both have a sense of humour. And yes, they  both like to sing,although one of them does it much better than the  other.

And  reversing the  role-model procedure here is  an  interesting titbit that lings…sorry, links  Ayushman with  Akshay. In his  very first film Vicky Donor Ayushman legitimized the  use of  the word  ‘sperm’ in Hindi cinema. In his latest  film Good Newzz Akshay  uses the word ‘sperm’ as if  it were  going out of fashion.

Someone should cast the two AKs together. And  the third AK, Anil Kapoor, can play their Dad.  Oh, he won’t! Okay,  Anil can play the eldest  of  the three AK brothers.

Also Read:  Akshay, The Burj Khalifa Is Not For Sale

Is that AK, I mean OK?

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