Aakash Dabhade
Aakash Dabhade plays football coach in PenaltyShared with IBTimes India

Actor Aakash Dabhade, who was last seen playing the role of Satyendra Rai in Article 15 starring Ayushmann Khurrana in the lead, will now be stepping into the shoes of a football coach in the upcoming sports drama called Penalty, which is slated for release on July 19. 

In Penalty, Aakash will be seen essaying the role of Chandan' aka Jugaadu who coaches a team of children from streets and orphanage. The storyline mainly focuses on empowering less fortunate children who have absolutely no support system. The movie also stars Kay Kay Menon, Shashank Arora, Manjot Singh and Bijou Thaangjam in important roles.

Talking about his role in Penalty, Aakash told International Business Times India, "My character 'Chandan aka Jugaadu' in Penalty is born from the very thought of empowering less fortunate children. It is called Jugaadu because by hook or crook he finds the way to make these deprived boys to participate in tournaments and he prepares them to take on the mighty teams (Kay Kay Menons team) in the tournament."

Aakash said that his character in the film has a strong emotional connect with these kids and tries to empower them by prepping them for a football tournament and how they fight against all the odds and emerge as winners. 

He further added, "He saves the kids from the streets from going the wrong way like drugs etc. The plot also addresses the issue of racial discrimination against north east Indians, which is also a cause of rising concern especially in the sports arena. Through this sports drama, I also hope to provide encouragement to sports as a career option. I mean, the world would have been deprived of Sachin Tendulkar had he focussed on studying alone." 

Aakash Dabhade, Kay Kay Menon
Aakash Dabhade, Kay Kay Menon on Penalty setsShared with IBTimes India

When we asked Aakash if he had ever considered himself as a less fortunate child at any point of his life, he replied, "I did not consider myself as less fortunate because comparatively I was better off than many others who did not have any kind of support system. They say between you and your dreams there are always people but in my case I would not call them Jugaadus but wellwishers. I can say my elder brother Kshitij Dabhade has been a Jugaadu in my life like how Charlie Chaplin's brother was for him."

Aakash recently completed 10 years in the film industry. He is quite a known face with 17 movies and 40 commercials to his credit.

When we asked Aakash to look back in time and share some 'kissas' (anecdotes) from his 10-year long journey in Bollywod, he said, "There are many memorable kissas but I would like to share two with you.

"When I was assisting for the film Ferrari Ki Sawaari, Rajesh Mapuskar Sir suggested me to audition for mohan and thus I auditioned for it for about 20 times because Vinod Sir and Raju Sir were not convinced that I would look like a domestic help of Sachin Tendulkar though they were convinced about the acting part. So one day I worked on my costumes, had a hair cut, grew moustache and then I again auditioned and since Vinod Chopra sir's approval was required, my audition tape was sent to him to Los Angeles where he was prepping for his film Broken Horses.

"He saw my audition with the American casting director and both exclaimed 'What a man! What an actor ! And this was conveyed to Rajesh Mapuskar by Vinod Chopra sir at 1:30am in the night (Indian Time) and Rajesh sir phoned me and conveyed this to me at 2 am which gave me my most memorable moment of my life."

Sharing his second memorable moment, Aakash recalled, "When Akshay Kumar sir saw my advertisment on TV while watching a cricket match and immediately told his team to get in touch with me and offered me a meaty part of Vishal Pradhan in Boss without any audition or a look test and that gave me an identity in Bollywood as people still recognise me as a Boss actor wherever I go."