After P Gopichand, Which Inspirational Role will Akshay Kumar Play Next?

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After P Gopichand, Which Inspirational Role will Akshay Kumar Play Next?

Illustration: Shruti Yatam

Barely a week has gone by since PV Sindhu’s historic victory at the World Badminton Championship, and there’s one question plaguing every sports fan in the country — what role is Akshay Kumar going to play in her biopic? There’s been a lot of speculation over the answer: Maybe he’ll play Sindhu herself, under a layer of make-up and prosthetics. Or maybe he’ll pull a fast one on everyone and play himself, as the supportive superstar who waves the national flag and cries at every match. A few of the more rational ones surmised that Akshay Kumar would play Pullela Gopichand, Sindhu’s star coach who supported her along the way.

In this instance, it seems like the rational ones would be correct. The actor has in the last couple of days expressed interest in playing the role of the star coach, and a few hours later had Gopichand’s stamp of approval. Phew. Finally some clarity over who the leading man will be in a film about one of the country’s finest sportswomen.

Choosing Akshay Kumar may seem like a no-brainer at this point, considering the actor’s feat of chronicling every noteworthy Indian achievement on the big screen. He was there to help teach women menstrual hygiene, he brought the world the story of the Mangalyaan mission, and now he’s going to steal the show in his role as the best sports coach in the country. (Who’s playing Sindhu, you ask? We don’t know, ask some other website that doesn’t stan for Akki.)

What’s becoming clearer by the day is that being played by Akshay Kumar in a film is one of the greatest ambitions of today’s youth. We can already hear parents nagging their children to do something worthy — something that Akshay Kumar can breathe life into on the big screen.

Honestly, this puts a lot of pressure on the kids. Now, not only do they have to get top grades, respect everyone older than them, and somehow find someone to marry from a very specific pool of shaadi-goers, they also have to do enough to impress everyone’s favourite actor. No one wants to be the underdog Akshay Kumar doesn’t make a movie about. So to set things right, and in the spirit of “no child left behind” here are some everyday victories and people that Akshay Kumar should celebrate in his upcoming films, so everyone can join in on the fun.

Ab Tumhare Hawale Netflix Saathiyo

After spending three years leeching off everyone he knows to watch F.R.I.E.N.D.S. for free, Jatin’s friend’s friend’s friend bars him from using their account. So Jatin decides it’s time to take matters into his own hands. He walks into his parents’ room, asks for 650 every month and does the unthinkable — he buys his own Netflix account. His friends are shocked, but Jatin stays strong, and doesn’t share his password with any of them. The tables have turned for this underdog. Once Akshay Kumar makes this young man’s story mainstream, we’ll have effectively ended the menace of Netflix leeches for good. 

He was there to help teach women menstrual hygiene, he brought the world the story of the Mangalyaan mission, and now he’s going to steal the show in his role as the best sports coach in the country.

Thookna Mana Hai

A thrilling biopic following the life of young Jeet, who took up spitting on the road at a very young age because he saw everyone else doing it. Over the years, Jeet becomes famous around the city for his intricate paan art, but is personally beginning to reconsider his life’s decisions. In the climax of the film, we see him staring straight at a red wall, the spit halfway out of his mouth before he rethinks his decision, and spits in a dustbin instead. Akshay Kumar’s performance is already bringing tears to our eyes.

RACE 4

Young Rahul didn’t know what he was signing up for when he decided to take a rickshaw from Kandivali to Bandra at 9 am. But to our surprise, the first rickshawallah he met agreed to take him there, no questions asked. The two of them then reach Bandra 34 minutes later, wind in their hair on an empty highway. Rahul had done the unthinkable, and automatically became an inspiration for what seems like billions of motorists in the city. Akshay Kumar brings a certain grace to the role that no other actor could.

Change Diya to Darna Kya

The twist of the film is in the title, but that doesn’t make this achievement any smaller, especially considering Akshay Kumar has been cast in the role. In the film, Kumar plays a small-town delivery man who, against all odds, always carries exact change. It doesn’t matter if you’ve got a ₹2,000 note, or only chillar, this delivery boy has you covered. One of the finer moments in the film is when he manages to convince a Twitter troll to lift the boycott of his food app by convincing him he would come over with exactly 277.82. Heartwarming and contextual, what more could we ask for? 

These are obviously just a few of the thousands of minor victories that should be celebrated on the big screen in the coming years. Maybe once they’re out, we can stop taking pride in PV Sindhu’s victory just by virtue of being in a 4,000-kilometer radius of her, and we each have our own Akshay Kumar movie to inspire us. At this point, it doesn’t seem like Bollywood’s obsession with biopics or Akshay Kumar is going anywhere. Might as well make the most of it.

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