“He was fit then, and he’s still fit."
Veteran Bollywood star Chunky Pandey has revealed that he once gave acting lessons to fellow actor Akshay Kumar.
Pandey and Kumar have worked together in the Housefull series, as well as the 2010 film Tees Maar Khan.
However, when the pair met, Akshay Kumar was an up-and-coming actor, who Chunky Pandey took under his wing.
According to Pandey, Kumar now jokes that being briefly coached by Pandey is why he did not win any awards at the start of his career.
Chunky Pandey revealed all in an appearance on Cyrus Broacha’s YouTube show.
Speaking of Akshay Kumar, Pandey said:
“He really makes me laugh about it. I graduated from a school called Madhumati’s Dancing School.
“So when I was graduating… Akshay’s much younger than me, four-five years younger than me. Akshay was just joining the school.
“You know how it is, when you just join, the teachers don’t teach you, the senior students teach you.
“So I used to teach him some dance moves, and some dialogue delivery.”
According to Chunky Pandey, his teaching led Akshay Kumar to become the star he is today, as Kumar chose to “undo” what he had taught him.
“He still laughs and jokes about it.
“That’s why he says in the initial part of his career he didn’t get too much work or awards, because of the acting I taught him.
“He had to undo what I taught him and become a better actor, and that’s why he’s become Akshay Kumar.”
This is not the first time that Chunky Pandey’s coaching of Akshay Kumar has been brought up.
At a 2016 press event for Housefull 3, Kumar spoke about how Pandey inspired him.
Akshay Kumar said:
“The place where Chunky Pandey sahab used to learn acting, he used to be my senior there.
“When I used to go there as a junior, we used to look up to him and we used to wait for the moment when he would come.
“His film Aag Hi Aag (1987) had released, which was a super-duper hit.
“I used to be a huge fan of Chunky Pandey.”
Since Chunky Pandey’s brief stint teaching Akshay Kumar, Kumar has gone on to become one of the most successful actors in Bollywood.
Akshay is nothing short of a star, and Pandey revealed that he always knew he would succeed.
“Akshay is eye-candy; he’s a beautiful-looking guy.
“He was fit then, and he’s still fit. He’s got great attitude.”