Remembering birthday boy Akshay Kumar's best pairings
From a hairy khiladi to a smooth hero, what a long strange trip it's been for birthday boy Akshay Kumar. Born in Amritsar 47 years ago, Kumar became a hero in Bollywood largely because of his physical fitness. He had learnt martial arts in Thailand and his muscles -- which were then barely visible under the thick rug of chest hair that heroes still proudly flaunted in the '90s -- made him the man producers wanted for not just action flicks but also romances.
After a brief down time in the late '90s, Kumar returned sans body hair but with a far more stylish haircut. This sleeker and smoother Kumar turned out to be something of a box office darling. While he'd been a second-rung hero in the '90s, when he starred in countless films with 'khiladi' in the title, from 2007 onwards, Kumar vaulted himself into the A-lister category. With films like Welcome, Singh is Kinng and Housefull, Kumar was all set as Bollywood's best loved heroes.
When we say "best-loved", we mean that quite literally. Gossip mills always enjoy linking co-stars but Kumar's reputation as B-town's Casanova is in a league of its own. You'd be hard pressed to find a single co-star with whom Kumar's name wasn't linked, including Rekha. Even before he'd officially entered Bollywood, he had a connection to the silver screen because he was dating Pooja Batra. There was supposedly as much chemistry off screen as there was on screen with Ayesha Jhulka, Kumar's co-star in Khiladi. Then came Raveena Tandon, who starred opposite Kumar in Mohra. Among Kumar's best publicised romances were with Shilpa Shetty, Twinkle Khanna (whom he is now married to) and Priyanka Chopra (this last one is rumoured to have happened a few years after his marriage).
On the occasion of his 47th birthday, we'd like to say cheers to Kumar the loverboy and remember some of his best onscreen pairings. It'll make you appreciate how Kumar has not aged over the years and also how much the heroines have (ahem) transformed themselves. Note: The videos listed below may be slightly NSFW, particularly if your office is not full of Akshay Kumar fans.
With Ayesha Jhulka, in Khiladi:
With Raveena Tandon, in Mohra:
With Shilpa Shetty, in Main Khiladi Tu Anari:
With Priyanka Chopra, in Aitraaz:
With Katrina Kaif, in Singh is Kinng:
With Junior, in It's Entertainment:
Updated Date: Sep 09, 2014 16:54:20 IST