Kaale Coatwala Khiladi!
STARDUST UK EDITION|March 2017

For the longest period of time, we’ve all known him for his fitness, discipline and his daredevil stunts. Afraid of being stereotyped, he later swam to another genre, and naïvely jumped in the well of comedy. However, he surprised everyone and proved his versatility to all those who thought Akshay Kumar was only meant to kick butt in his films. He hosts a plethora of talent and has mastered the art of making people laugh hilariously. Carrying the humour sword through his film jolly llb 2, he stayed true to his character. He was at his humorous best in this delightful conversation too and his answers will leave you in splits. He also spoke about his admiration and respect for the Indian army in between.

Gayatri Nirmal

Jolly LLB 2 is very different from Jolly LLB.

Yes, because watching a film with only court scenes makes no sense. In reality, too, the court drama is not only in the court. We wanted to show things which run parallel through the court rounds, like who are trying to dominate the witnesses. etc. We wanted to balance the proportion of court scenes and related surroundings shown in the film, so that the audience could enjoy it.

This is the first time that you’ve played a lawyer’s role in your career. Did you undergo any specific kind of preparation for it?

No, I didn’t. I believe my director prepares more than me, and I cannot compete with my director’s preparation.

The common man today has lost faith in the judiciary system. Do you agree?

Who says that the common man has lost faith in the judiciary system? If tomorrow, one comes across any kind of problem, where will he go? When you fight with someone, you tell them I’ll see you next in court. The core problem is that it takes a lot of time. It goes upto 12 to 13 years, but what can they do? Maths says that there are three-and-a-half to four crore cases pending because there are only 21,000 judges and they are trying their level best. They have to read zillions of files to understand who’s right and who’s wrong. They have to study everything and make sure that they don’t give a wrong decision. The judges have to be very precise. Therefore, they are quite stressed out. I used to see Saurabh Shukla, who’s played a judge in the film. Even while he was just enacting his scenes, there used to be so much stress on his face, thinking about him not getting the lines wrong to the prosecutor or the opponent. So, imagine a real judge going through it! Hats off to our judicial system.

In Rustom, they showed the jury system, which was the last case in India, the jury system since then, being abolished. Do you think the jury system would have worked better even today?

I don’t know what would work because I don’t have much idea about the jury system.

Jolly LLB 2 is more commercial compared to the previous one. Is this because of your presence?

I’m very grateful to Arshad (Warsi) for showing me the way to do a film like this. He’s the guy who paved the way. It’s not about commercial or non-commercial. I went according to what he had done in the previous film. He also made that film very big. On the contrary, I hope the character I’ve played in Jolly LLB 2 does as brilliantly as Jolly LLB did.

Do you think when a star does an already established character’s role; it becomes difficult to deal with the pressure?

Yes, there are several kinds of pressures. To be honest, I can feel the pressure of delivering the best.

You’ve been in this industry for 26 years now. You were the first action hero in Bollywood and later, tagged as a tremendous comedian. Now, you’re completely doing different genres. So, what has this journey been like?

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