Above and beyond the good looks and biceps, Aamir Khan’s talent has been making our hearts melt since the 1970s. 1970s? Yes, you’ve heard it right! He has been on the acting scene for 40 (forty) years already.
If you can’t remember him (how dare you), he is the remarkable actor behind Like Stars on Earth (2007), Ghajini (2008), and PK (2014). And who would ever forget the uber-ly genius Phunsukh Wangdu A.K.A Ranchoddas Shamaldas Chanchad of THE 3 Idiots (2009)?
Want to know him more?
1. He wants to make the world a better place.
Aamir Khan is not your typical celebrity. He wants to make the world a better place.
Aamir hosted a television show, Satmayev Jayate (Truth Alone Prevails) that is considered successful in empowering people. Aamir discusses sensitive issues in Indian society such as female feticide, rape, honor killings, domestic violence, and untouchability among others, with the Indian authorities to do just social action.
Because of the social relevance and impact of Khan’s show, he got featured in the Time Magazine cover where he was called “India’s First Superstar Activist.” Why? Because Khan was not a mere host of the Satmayev Jayate. He is its “creator, producer… and he invested it with his star power – and his credibility,” said Time Magazine’s World Editor, Bobby Ghosh.
2. Khan is one of “The Most Influential People in the World” – Time Magazine
Aamir Khan is more than courageous to discuss sensitive issues in the Indian society such as child abuse and honor killing with the Indian authorities. No wonder, Time Magazine noticed his “quest”.
In 2013, Aamir Khan was the only Indian actor nominated for Time Magazine’s 100 Most Influential People of the World. He got nominated along with the world’s leaders and icons. And among more than 200 contenders, he was ranked 31 of the hundred influential people.
Well, the man deserves it!
3. He is a UNICEF Ambassador.
He was appointed UNICEF Ambassador in 2011.According to UNICEF India, Aamir Khan has “a critical role in UNICEF’s nationwide campaign to highlight the importance of good nutrition in infants and toddlers, “Malnutrition Quit India.”
No one can ever doubt his commitment to the cause. He said, “I think this has been a great opportunity for me to raise awareness on the issue of malnutrition amongst children in India…I believe we can do a lot to change this situation and with that purpose in mind I have chosen to lend my voice to UNICEF’s programme on nutrition. Partnering with UNICEF will enable me to advocate for the rights of the most vulnerable and marginalized children in India and bring a difference to their lives and hereby to the future of our country.”
UNICEF India cited instances that prove Aamir Khan’s social involvement. First of all, Khan has been in the frontline of the “Incredible India,” the tourism campaign launched by the Indian government. He has remarkable advocacy in education. He got involved with Teach India, “a campaign to encourage more college graduates to spend time teaching students in rural areas.”
He is also an advocate of women’s rights. He took part in the “Ministry of Women and Child Development’s “Atithi Devo Bhava” campaign which spreads the message ensuring safety of women travellers to India.”
4. The Indian Government recognized him for his contribution in Arts.
IN PHOTO: Aamir Khan receiving the Padma Shri Award from Pres. Dr. Abdul Kalam in 2003. Source: pib.nic.in
In fact, he is a recipient of the Padma Shri, “the fourth highest civilian award in the Republic of India.” Amir Khan was honored with the Padma Shri in the field of Arts by the Indian Government in 2003.
Once again, he was honored by the Indian Government with the Padma Bhushan, “third-highest civilian award in the Republic of India,” in 2010. How impressive!
5. He joined theater before entering mainstream Bollywood
Khan started in a theatre group called Avantar. However, he worked on the backstage for two years. Then he decided to become an actor against his father’s will.
But, he already appeared in the film of his uncle, Nassir Hussein who is an actor, director and producer. His father is also a producer of films.
6. And a tennis champ, too!
According to Aamir Khan’s biography, when he was younger he was a dedicated tennis player who “never missed a single practice session.” His dedication made him the Maharashtra state tennis champion.
So when his mother ask him, “Did you win or lose?” he would normally answer, “Yes I won.”
According to his father, “He was very good at tennis and was the champion in the under 12 or 14 group. He played at the national level. I wouldn’t allow him to go because I didn’t want him to miss school. But he got his way and went.”
His father also revealed that he played cricket, too.
7. He is vegan.
Aamir Khan decided a vegan lifestyle after watching a YouTube Video his wife recommended. The video showed diseases that could be prevented with vegan diet. After watching, he decided to give up consuming fish, meat, and dairy products. His wife, Kiran Rao, is a vegan herself.
Remember Kareena Kapoor Khan, Aamir’s co-star in 3 Idiots? The two of them remained friends after the legendary Bollywood film. According to sources, the two had lunch recently where Aamir advised mother-to-be Kareena to eat healthy and skip coffee. How sweet!
Kareena and her husband Saif Ali Khan are pregnant for their first child.
8. Hollywood actors Arnold Schwarzenegger and Tom Hanks admire him!
Arnold Schwarzenegger met Aamir Khan in 2024 in a leadership summit in New Delhi. Aamir tweeted a picture of their encounter which was retweeted by Arnold saying he admires the latter as an actor.
While Shwarzenegger praised Khan’s artistic talent, Tom Hanks admire the Khan for his “social awareness and effort to make a difference in Indian society.” In a report, Hanks revealed his admiration to Bollywood legend Aamir Khan after reading the Time Magazine where Khan was described as “India’s first superstar-activist”.
Hanks said, “I really admire the work that Aamir Khan is doing in India. Aamir seems to understand the influencing power of being a celebrity and is using it to act as a catalyst for change in society, something that definitely deserves both appreciation and support from all quarters.”
Hollywood actress Michelle Yeoh also expressed her admiration to Aamir Khan when she attended the 2014 International Film Festival of India (IFFI), saying she loved 3 Idiots and is looking forward to working with Khan in the future.
Jackie Chan “became his fan overnight” too.
9. Khan’s movies were shown in Cannes and nominated in Oscar’s
The Indian fim, Mangal Pandey: The Rising or The Rising: Ballad of Mangal Pandey, starring Aamir Khan was premiered at the Marche du Film section of the Cannes Film Festival in 2005. Khan played the lead role of the Sepoy Mangal Pandey who led the Indian rebellion of 1857 otherwise known as “The First War of Indian Independence.” The film is regarded as Aamir Khan’s come back to acting.
Aamir’s period drama Lagaan (2001) was nominated in the Oscar’s for the Best Foreign Language Film category. He was ever however for him “the Oscar is a window through which your audience increases… But I see it in that way only.”
He even became the first Indian actor to be on the international jury of the Berlin Film Festival.
10. He declined Madame Tussauds’ offer to display his wax figure in London
Sources say that few years ago “Aamir was approached to get waxed at Madame Tussauds Museum.” However, he wanted to “keep himself at low-profile turned down the offer.”