“He has more energy and drive than all of us 30-year-olds put together on the set,” a friend working on Kaun Banega Crorepati with Amitabh Bachchan said while urging us to wrap up our house party at a godly hour, for once. The year was 2016, she had to report on the sets of KBC at the break of dawn. “There are no shifts when working with Mr Bachchan and we’d rather have it that way. He’s constantly pushing, innovating, making the shot better, we thrive off his energy,” I remember the glint in her eye as she said this. This was not coming from a place of hero-worship, this was the satisfaction of working on a product that excites and tickles your creative energies, that consumes your being; I like to call it ‘work trance’ and many of you know what I’m referring to. And for a superstar, at his age and his stature to inspire and instil that trance-like state in adults less than half his age, to me is awe-inspiring.
You know the stuff they teach you in leadership classes, that gets printed in the Harvard Business Review papers, that managers are asked to abide by to lead a team of motivated individuals – Amitabh Bachchan, at 78, embodies it all. His drive, his commitment, his infectious passion for his craft makes not just him, but others around him deliver the very best.
Bachchan who recently recovered from Coronavirus at 77, despite the odds and massive co-morbidities, proves that it’s his never-give-up spirit that wins the day for him.
He’s got sheer conviction in himself and the world around – and that is what makes him lead such an enriching and satisfying professional and personal life.
Which now brings me to Ikigai – a word that resonated loud and clear in 2019 – you might or might not have read the best seller Ikigai: The Japanese Secret To A Long And Happy Life, though chances are, you know what it’s about.
With innumerable measured accolades, some of which include four prestigious National Awards and the Dadasaheb Phalke Award for Lifetime Achievement to his credit, and intangible rewards, namely the love and adulation of millions around the world, Amitabh Bachchan has achieved that no other actor ever has. He is the true embodiment of Ikigai, in the purest sense of the word. He loves the life he lives.
With around 200 films to his credit, in a career spanning over 50 years (his first film was Saat Hindustani, 1969) and a popularity that continues to soar, his is a classic case of ‘can’t stop, won’t stop’ and thank god for that.
Team SpotboyE joins me in wishing the biggest, brightest, yet most humble, superstar of Indian cinema, a very Happy 78th birthday. May your ‘atrangi yaari’ with the movies, your fans and teeming social media followers, continue to flourish!
Image source: Instagram/amitabhbachchan/ Ikigai book cover
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