The row on Akshay Kumar’s National Award win this year for his performance in Rustom refuses to die down. Actor and friend Suniel Shetty is now weighing in on the debate. Speaking to IANS as reported by the Indian Express, Suniel Shetty said Akshay deserved the award, because an actor shouldn’t be judged by just one of his films.
“This is completely wrong. Akshay has given so many hits. Why are you looking at just one film? Look at his career. He has been there for more than 100 films. He deserves the honour. Maybe he has been given this honour looking at his graph and growth in films over the years. There are very few actors who give respect to the uniform when they get into it. Akshay is one of them,” he said.
The two actors have worked together in several films in the past, including Aan: Men At Work (2004), Dhadkan (2000), Hera Pheri (2000), and Sapoot (1996). Shetty went on to describe how Kumar managed to emerge as a top actor in Bollywood over time.
“When in the beginning his 13 films didn’t work, many said that Akshay is finished and his career is over. But, now he is giving Rs 100 crore films every time. He needs to forget this and doesn’t need to feel bad about it. If not for Rustom, then think that he has got the award for Airlift,” he said.
Soon after Akshay Kumar won his National Award, a section of the media and film fraternity had slammed the National Award jury for making a ‘biased decision’. The actor eventually responded to his critics, imploring them to “take away” his award if he doesn’t deserve it.
“I have been working in the film industry for the last 25 years and I have noticed that every time whoever wins a National Award, the debate starts on who is deserving to win the award. I got it after 25 years. If you think I don’t deserve it, you can take it away,” he said.
Soon after the victory and the backlash, director Priyadarshan, a member of the National Award committee, rushed to his defence. The filmmaker said that Akshay’s performances in both Rustom and Airlift were considered by the jury for the selection process. As only one film could be named, they had decided to award Rustom.
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