Akshay Kumar On Striking Gold Yet Again
GLOBAL MOVIE MAGAZINE|October2018

He has the knack of turning everything he touches to gold. If Akshay Kumar was a salesman he could have sold refrigerators to Eskimos, given the fact that he dares to venture where no man has gone before. Single-handedly, he has changed perceptions about sanitary napkins in the country and has even made toilets appear cool. From action to comedy to patriotic and pressing issues, Akshays graph is forever changing, ever evolving. His recent outing is Reema Kagtis Gold, a historical sports drama inspired by Indias first Olympic gold medal in hockey in 1948. The film is expected to boost the fortunes of hockey for sure. Excerpts from a freewheeling interview with the player, who aces every game.

What is your earliest memory of hockey?

I used to play hockey in school. I remember my father getting me a hockey stick when I was around seven. I used to go to Sion-Koliwada to practise.I recall dribbling one winter morning with fog all around.

Hockey is our national sport. But somehow it doesn’t get prestige.

We should not get into the national sports discussion. Rather, let’s ask ourselves, do I play any sport? I That’s more important. More than Gold being a hockey film, it’s about questioning whether we’re interested in sports. Make sure to inspire your children to take part in at least one sport. We must encourage sports among the youth, without getting into the political debate about which is our national sport.

What made you take up Gold?

It’s the story about our first Olympic gold medal, which we won in 1948. There was so much happening in the country that the gold medal wasn’t given priority and this news got submerged. I feel lucky to do a film like this. Also, it’s not just about hockey. What I want to say through this film is that every girl and boy in our country should pursue one sport. Croatia, which is such a small country, has made it compulsory for every child to play a sport. And maybe because of a culture or compulsion like that, the country made it to the Football World Cup final this year. Sports should be an important aspect in every individual’s life. It can keep you away from drugs and alcohol as your fitness-oriented mind will not allow such bad habits.

You’re playing the manager of the hockey team but being so fit, you could have passed yourself off as a player as well...

(Smiles) This film is told from the point of view of a drunk manager (Tapan Das), a cheater and a guy surrounded by controversies. But Bengalis are geniuses. They don’t shift focus until they have achieved their goal. This man took 11 people, made a team and went to the Olympics within a year and won!

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