'I'm original even in my remakes'

IT'S JUST minutes after Akshay Kumar's landed in Mumbai from Canada. The actor was in the US to shoot for his upcoming film, Seven by Eight; he also celebrated his 40th birthday there with his family.

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Published: Sat 13 Oct 2007, 10:59 AM

Last updated: Sun 5 Apr 2015, 12:44 AM

So now that he's joined the 'hot at 40' gang of superstars, does Akki plan to reinvent himself?

"Why should I? Even you've called me a superstar! Of course, the audience has also been kind, and by God's grace, I've been successful too. So why would I want to change anything that works for me?" he asks.

The hit hero has also been equated to King Khan in terms of popularity overseas in a recent poll. "The media seems to have run out of controversies, break-ups and scandals, so they've now decided to compare Shah Rukh and me! But frankly, there's no competition between me and SRK. Yes, we're two men who came from Delhi to Mumbai and turned our lives around, but the similarities end there. I respect Shah Rukh a lot, so there's no use talking about a non-existent rivalry."

Right now his attention is on his next film, a psychological thriller. "I play a psychiatrist in the movie. It was a truly different experience for me because the film deals with ghosts, exorcism and other paranormal elements. I'm sure the flick will spark off a lot of controversies, but we've tried to explore the scientific aspects and change social perceptions about certain beliefs," says Akki, adding, "This film is a remake of a Malayalam hit. It's about everyday life and is very real. I'm very original even in my remakes."

And what was it like working with Vidya Balan for the second time after Heyy Babyy? "Really nice. Vidya is extraordinary. It was fantastic working with her. And Vidya is the USP of this thriller flick —the film belongs to her."

Akshay is still zapped by the response to his latest hit Heyy Babyy. "I knew it was a nice film and was an absolute entertainer, but I didn't expect people to respond so well. It's unbelievable." And did he have an easy time handling the baby, Angel? "No way! Maybe that's the popular perception because I have a son; but it was Ritiesh Deshmukh who's an expert with babies," he says.

The man has just landed a plum action flick with a prominent Hollywood production house and will star with Deepika Padukone. What took the martial arts expert this long to do an action flick? "When I did action films, people kept saying he's only doing action films. So I took a break and now it's been five years since I did an action flick. I guess I'm ready for another one now," explains Akshay.

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