May Bollywood's best cop win!
Two films, both featuring Akshay Kumar as a policeman, are coming up in two weeks!
By Subhash K. Jha, IANS
"It reminds me of those good old days when I had a cops uniform in my car permanently," Akshay told IANS.
"I played good cops, bad cops, stupid cops, long-haired cops...you name it. But the cops that I'm playing now are so real, exciting and challenging that I can't say I'm bored with them."
After "Khakee", which fetched Akshay unprecedented praise as an actor, he's all set to encore the uniformed role in two films "Police Force" and Aan: Men At Work to be released in two weeks May 28 and June 4.
And then if you add Amitabh Bachchan and Om Puri's law enforcers' act in Govind Nihalani's "Dev" a week later on June 11, isn't it a bit too much of the colour khaki for the audience to digest?
"It can't be helped," sighs the harassed "Police Force" producer Kulbhushan Gupta. His film, earlier entitled "Vidroh", has been in the making for almost five years now.
"I'm fed up with the delays. Distributors, financiers...everyone takes advantage of delayed projects. I've done my best for my film. I've re-shot almost 50 percent of the film. I've just added an item song by Payal Rohatgi."
What about the "Aan" factor? "Where do I shift my film? I can only move it to September which I can't afford to do."
So "Police Force" releases alongside the prestigious Yashraj banner's urban romance "Hum Tum". "But at least the two films are totally dissimilar in mood. My film is more mass-oriented," avers Gupta.
So why would the audience want to pay good money to see Akshay do the cops act a week before the big police film "Aan" where he joins forces with Shatrughan Sinha and Suniel Shetty?
Explains Gupta, "I'll tell you why. Akshay isn't really a uniformed cop in 'Police Force'. He's an under-training cop. He and his colleagues are summoned to control a situation in the city where elections are held.
"Besides Akshay, Amrish Puri is outstanding as a good cop. Raj Babbar plays a negative role. And Raveena Tandon plays Akshay's romantic lead. They aren't paired opposite each other in 'Aan'."
While "Aan" is a multi-starrer, "Police Force" is a solo-hero actioner.
Can Akshay pull in the crowds on his own steam? He has done so in the past on Suniel Darshan's "Jaanwar" and "Andaaz".
Akshay isn't really disturbed by the omnipresence of the khaki colour in his career.
"What can I do? Producers can't hold back their releases just because I wear identical uniforms in their films. 'Aan' and 'Police Force' are two totally different films. I play two totally different cops. And I'm equally proud of both."
Akshay admits though that he's now wary of cops roles.
"Though all my three cops films 'Khakee', 'Police Force' and 'Aan' are prestigious products, I'm taking it easy with the cops roles now. Nowadays as soon as I hear the word 'police' during a narration I shake hands with the filmmaker and wish him goodbye.
"Luckily my next release, David Dhawan's 'Mujhse Shaadi Karogi', is an out-and-out comedy and there's no cop anywhere near me."
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