John calls Akshay the action star

Salman Khan might be the one delivering biggies like Wanted, Dabangg, Bodyguard, but it doesn’t matter to Abraham, says he wants to be the next tough guy after Khiladi Kumar.

bollywood Updated: Sep 28, 2011 17:23 IST
Prashant Singh
Prashant Singh
Hindustan Times

All he’s concentrating on now is creating brand Action Abraham with his stunts. And as John Abraham awaits the release of Force this weekend, he’s convinced he’s ready. “I’m completely prepared for action and to take up the action hero space as a raw and real guy,” says John.

Ask him if he looks up to someone like Salman Khan, who has emerged as the bankable action star after delivering back-to-back hits like Wanted (2009), Dabangg (2010) and Bodyguard, and he says, “Not really. If you talk about action, there’s no one like Akshay Kumar in Bollywood. He can fly across a wall and if he does do a stunt like that, I will look at it with my eyes wide open because I haven’t seen anyone like him. He is light years ahead of anyone in this arena, and is the real action star. In Hollywood though, it’s Sylvester Stallone. But after Akshay, I’m ready to take over in Bollywood. I’m going to make it my zone.”

At the same time, John does credit Salman and Ajay Devgn, whose last action film Singham also fared well at the box office, for resurrecting the genre. “Audiences have warmed up to it. And I hope they warm up to me as an action hero too,” says John, adding, “Action Abraham is the mantra I want to follow. I want to concentrate on action films and be like Vin Diesel or The Rock (Dwayne Johnson) in that hardcore space now.”

However, his next two releases are comedies. “Yes, I’m doing Desi Boyz and Housefull 2, besides I Me Aur Main. The last one is like my pet subject in a Wake Up Sid! (2009) zone. Then, I get into action with Race 2 and Shootout At Wadala. My date diary will have a lot of action. It’ll get more dangerous, hardcore and difficult, but I won’t give up,” says the 38-year-old.

Unlike entertaining action sequences, John wants to be involved with real stunts. “After Ghayal (1990), people should look at me and say, steer clear of this guy. So, I don’t want any unreal action. Even if goons fly with a single punch, it should be believable. Films like Dabangg and Singham have entertaining action, but mine has to be real,” he says.

Blast from the past

Salman Khan and John Abraham apparently don’t get along well. Reports of animosity between the two came up after they returned from the Rockstars concert in mid-2000s. There were rumours that the vibes between them were cold even when they were shooting for Baabul (2006), the only film in which they officially share screen space. Reportedly, that was the reason director Nikhil Advani kept no scenes featuring them together in his film Salaam-e-Ishq (2007).

Some time ago, Salman revealed that his girlfriend Katrina Kaif had second thoughts about working with John in New York (2009) too, but Salman asked her to reconsider, given the script and director.

Armed forces request Force makers to organise screenings John Abraham-starrer Force seems to have received endorsement from an unusual quarter — the Indian armed forces. Apparently, the military has requested the makers, Vipul Shah and Fox Star Studios, to organise special screenings of the film for the armed forces in various cantonments in the country.

When contacted, Shah confirms: “Yes, we are organising the screenings. It’s an honour. We are trying to arrange for as many as possible.” The film has been directed by Nishikant Kamat of Mumbai Meri Jaan (2008) fame. Shah plans to organise the screenings a day before its release this Thursday in about 25 centres that are equipped with UFO digital theatres.

First Published: Sep 27, 2011 20:12 IST