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Delhi, India
Monday, September 25, 2017

Akshay Kumar

Rajiv Hari Om Bhatia (born 9 September 1967), better known by his stage name ‘Akshay Kumar’, is an Indian actor, producer and martial artist who has appeared in over a hundred Hindi films. He has been nominated for Filmfare Awards several times, winning it two times. When he began his acting career in the 1990s, he primarily starred in action films and was known for his appearances in films of the “Khiladi series” as well as other action films such as Waqt Hamara Hai (1993), Mohra (1994), Elaan (1994), Suhaag (1994), Sapoot (1996), Jaanwar (1999).

Kumar was born in Amritsar, India to Hari Om Bhatia and Aruna Bhatia. His father Hari Om Bhatia was a military officer. From a young age, Kumar was recognised as a performer, particularly as a dancer. He lived in Delhi’s Chandni Chowk till he was three years old before moving to Mumbai where he lived in Koliwada, a Punjabi dominated area.He received his school education from Don Bosco School and enrolled in Mumbai’s Guru Nanak Khalsa College for higher education, but dropped out after an year and went to Bangkok to learn martial arts. Kumar also has a sister, Alka Bhatia. When Kumar was a teenager, his father asked him what he aspired to be. Kumar expressed his desire to become an actor.

After having obtained a black belt in Taekwondo while in India, he studied martial arts in Bangkok, Thailand, where he learned Muay Thai and worked as a chef and waiter. Upon his return to Mumbai, he commenced the teaching of martial arts. One of his students, an aspiring photographer, recommended Kumar into modelling which ultimately led to a modelling assignment. Kumar effectively made more money within the first two days of shooting, in comparison to his entire months salary, and therefore chose a modelling career path. He also worked as a background dancer in various films. One morning, he missed his flight for an ad-shoot in Bangalore. Disappointed with himself, he visited a film studio along with his portfolio. That evening, Kumar was signed for a lead role by producer Pramod Chakravarthy for the movie

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Kumar made his first appearance as the lead actor opposite Raakhee and Shantipriya in Saugandh (1991), though he had appeared in the uncredited role of a martial arts instructor in the 1987 Mahesh Bhatt-directed and Kumar Gaurav starrer, Aaj. In the same year, he acted in Kishore Vyas-directed Dancer, which received poor reviews. The following year he starred in Abbas Mustan-directed suspense thriller, Khiladi, widely considered his breakthrough role. His next release was the Raj Sippy-directed detective film Mr. Bond, based on James Bond. His last release of 1992 was Deedar. It failed to perform well at the box office.In 1993, he acted in the Keshu Ramsay-directed bilingual film Ashaant (released in Kannada as Vishnu-Vijaya) and starring Dr.Vishnuvardhan, Ashwini Bhave and Ashutosh Rana. All of his films released during 1993, including Dil Ki Baazi, Kayda Kanoon, Waqt Hamara Hai and Sainik did not perform well commercially. In 1994, he played a police inspector in two films: Sameer Malkan-directed remake of Hollywood film The Hard Way, Main Khiladi Tu Anari and Rajiv Rai-directed Mohra which were among the highest grossing films of the year.Later that year, he starred in Yash Chopra-produced romance, Yeh Dillagi opposite Kajol. His role in the film earned Kumar his first nomination for Best Actor at the Filmfare Awards and Star Screen award. During the same year, Kumar also had success with films like Suhaag and the low budget action film Elaan. All these achievements, promoted Kumar as one of the most successful actors of the year. In 1994, he appeared in 11 feature films.