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Six Bollywood Actors and Their Journey of Body Transformation Though looking admirable on-screen was always a part of vanity for Bollywood actors, it is interesting to observe how molding one's body according to the look of the character, whether that means gaining several pounds and not looking the best version of themselves, has become a part of the journey of an artist

By Arundhuti Banerjee

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(clockwise) Kartik Aaryan; Aamir Khan; Randeep Hooda; Tapsee Pannu; Bhumi Pednekar; and Vidya Balan

As the film Chandu Champion is gearing up for release on June 14, starring Kartik Aaryan, here we look at some of the mind-blowing body transformation of Bollywood stars, including Vidya Balan, Aamir Khan, Bhumi Pednekar and more…

Though looking admirable on-screen was always a part of vanity for Bollywood actors, it is interesting to observe how molding one's body according to the look of the character, whether that means gaining several pounds and not looking the best version of themselves, has become a part of the journey of an artist.

Here we look at six Bollywood actors who, through the journey of body transformation, celebrate the power of discipline, dedication, and tenacity to achieve their goal…

Kartik Aaryan: The day, the first appearance of his upcoming film, Chandu Champion came out, it was a real surprise not only for all the Kartik Aaryan fans for his body transformation but also for the title character he plays in the film.

The story of Murlikant Petkar aka Chandu Champion, the first Paralympics gold medalist of India, is highly inspirational and fascinating. It is the journey of a young wrestler who joined the Indian army and faced nine bullet injuries during the Indo-Pak War of 1965. Eventually, he became physically disabled but never gave up on life. He trained himself and participated in the Summer Paralympics of 1968 and 1972. He won an individual gold medal in the 1972 Summer Paralympics and became the first Indian to set that record.

It is interesting to notice how Kartik, 33, will be seen in different phases of physical transformation – from being a young wrestler to a boxer to an army man to an athlete with a lean body structure, losing his body fat from 39 percent to 7 percent, and eventually an old man. To achieve the body, Kartik not only went through hardcore physical training but also a lot of emotional discipline by resisting all his favorite food that gives him happiness otherwise.

Aamir Khan: The story of Aamir Khan's fit to fat for his blockbuster film Dangal is still vivid in the memory of all his fans. In the film, Aamir played the character of Dronacharya Award-winning amateur wrestler, senior Olympics coach Mahavir Phogat.

While most of the actors are putting their best effort into building their six-pack abs and muscular body, the Bollywood superstar, at the age of 50 under the observation of physical trainers, took up the challenge of gaining around 30 kg to reach the body weight of 98 kg to play an old wrestler in the film. Later, the actor released his journey of body transformation, and it shows the power of discipline and motivation can drive an individual to achieve his goal and age could just be a number.

Randeep Hooda: In the recent past, just before the release of his film Swatantrya Veer Savarkar, Randeep Hooda dropped a few pictures of his body transformation that show how the actor went through a huge weight loss to get under the skin of the character of Indian politician and activist Veer Savarkar. While those images showed the rigorous training the actor went through, in several interviews during the release of the film, the actor revealed that he not only worked hard physically to achieve the body but also almost stopped eating, which emotionally affected him too! In the past, the actor also went through body transformation for projects like Sarbjit and CAT.

Vidya Balan: The unrealistic expectations and beauty standards have always been thrashed upon female actresses, especially leading ladies, for the longest time, and it is only recently that the doors are opening for inclusivity in the glamour world. In such an environment, back in 2011, when Vidya Balan, who always dealt with criticism for her body image, especially by the media, went ahead and gained 12 kg to 'look' the part for the film The Dirty Picture. With that bold step, she redefined the image of the modern Bollywood heroine. Though the criticism of her body image continued for the next couple of years, she became the flag bearer of body positivity.

Bhumi Pednekar: Though every Bollywood heroine wishes to look her best in her debut film, especially when it's produced under the Yash Raj Production, Bhumi Pednekar, at the age of 25, broke all the rules and set her mark in her debut film Dum Laga Ke Haisha in 2015. She played the character of an overweight young girl who gained 35 kg. She looked almost unrecognizable when we look back at those pictures now. As the film was a super hit and won National Film Awards, the risk was worth taking!

Taapsee Pannu: Actress Taapsee Pannu played an athlete in three films – Rashmi Rocket, Loop Lapeta and Shabash Mithu. As two of these films were based on real-life characters, the actress not only went through hardcore physical training to achieve the body of an athlete but also the mindset of an athlete.

Arundhuti Banerjee

Content Editor

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