Gurukant Desai to Bob Biswas: Abhishek Bachchan’s 5 onscreen avatars that left us in awe
From playing a fearless cop in the Dhoom film series to getting in the skin of a jovial boy-next-door in Delhi 6, Abhishek Bachchan has proved time and again that he loves to experiment with his onscreen look. As the versatile actor, known for choosing unconventional roles, turns 47 on February 5, we pick five of his onscreen avatars that left us in awe of his ability to transform his look.
Gurukant Desai from Guru (2007)
Abhishek came into his own as a pot-bellied, ambitious businessman Gurukant Desai in Mani Ratnam’s Guru. Abhishek’s acting and transformation throughout the course of the film made his Gurukant believable in this rags-to-riches story. Despite an average box-office collection, the film got Abhishek critic’s approval for his nuanced performance. The actor was only 30 when he played the role and had to put on weight to look like a middle-aged businessman in the film. The chemistry between him and Aishwarya Rai Bachchan, who played his wife Sujata Desai, also shined through in Guru.
Sameer Acharya from Dostana (2008)
A year later, Abhishek appeared on the silver screen as the cool male nurse Sam/Sameer Acharya in the 2008 romcom Dostana. Also starring Priyanka Chopra and John Abraham, the hit Tarun Mansukhani directorial was one of the first commercial Bollywood films to add homosexuality to the narrative. Abhishek’s Sam had to pretend to be in a homosexual relationship with his friend Kunal (John) in order to share an apartment with a woman. The ease with which Abhishek pulled off this role, hardly a year after playing a poles-apart character like Gurukant, showed his versatility as an actor.
Beera Munda from Raavan (2010)
Mani Ratnam truly brings out the best in Abhishek. The 2010 adventure drama Raavan, based on the Indian mythological tale of Ramayana, saw Abhishek in the role of Beera Munda, a bandit whose sister is killed by policeman Dev Pratap Sharma (Vikram). Beera sets out to avenge his sister by kidnapping the policeman's wife Ragini (Aishwarya Rai) but ends up falling in love with her. While the film didn't fare well at the box office, Abhishek made a mark with his anti-hero role and managed to get into the skin of his character. His chemistry with Aishwarya was palpable in the film.
Abbas Ali/Abhishek Bachchan in Bol Bachchan (2012)
The 2012 Rohit Shetty comedy Bol Bachchan saw Abhishek caught in a comedy of errors situation where he has to pretend to be two different people — Abbas Ali and Abhishek Bachchan. The only thing keeping his lies at bay is a fake moustache and different types of clothing. While Ajay Devgn makes his mark in the film with over-the-top comedic dialogues, Abhishek’s desperation to keep his fake identity alive at all cost makes the film a laughter riot.
Bob Biswas in Bob Biswas (2021)
A complete shift from Abhishek's previous roles in films, Bob Biswas proved to be his trial by fire. Not only was Abhishek taking on the role of a cold-blooded murder for the first time but also playing a character that had already been perfected by Saswata Chatterjee in the 2012 Vidya Balan-starrer Kahani. The spin-off based on Saswata's character from Kahani saw Abhishek play the role of a contract killer who has lost his memories. For the role, the actor had to wear gold rimmed glasses and button-down shirts with his hair parted down, giving him the look of an innocent insurance seller.