Home Entertainment Ajay Devgn on Bollywood Period Soccer Drama ‘Maidaan’: ‘One of the Best...

Ajay Devgn on Bollywood Period Soccer Drama ‘Maidaan’: ‘One of the Best Films I Have Done’ (EXCLUSIVE)


Bollywood A-lister Ajay Devgn‘s latest release is “Maidaan,” where he plays an inspirational soccer coach.

Directed by Amit Ravindernath Sharma (“Badhaai Ho”), the film is produced by Zee Studios, Boney Kapoor’s Bayview Projects and Fresh Lime Films. Devgn stars as Syed Abdul Rahim, whose revolutionary coaching and strategy methods led the Indian national soccer team to gold medals in the 1951 and 1962 Asian Games and a semi-final berth at the 1956 Olympics. The cast also includes Priyamani (“The Family Man”) and Gajraj Rao (“Badhaai Ho”).

“‘Maidaan’ is one of the best films I have done. From the way the emotions and drama have been captured to its exceptional storytelling, great characters, and the way it has been shot. For me it’s perfect,” Devgn told Variety.

On his preparation for the role Devgn said, “I just followed Amit and his brief for Rahim, because of all the detailing work they had done in the past few years. From how he spoke, walked, and behaved to the problems he faced, I just followed Amit on the brief of what he was. And I just became the character.”

“When the camera rolls, I start thinking about the character, I start feeling what he is going through and when the camera says ‘cut’ I become normal. But there were a lot of scenes that were very physically and mentally taxing,” Devgn added.

On his single biggest takeaway from the film, Devgn said, “Apart from a fantastic film, you take home, ‘You want, you can achieve anything you want whatever the difficulties are’ and that’s what the film says.”

The Indian box office roared back post-pandemic in 2023, but mainly with a focus on spectacle films, rather than those with strong storylines. 2024 is proving to be different with eight of the top 10 being “content films,” as films with strong storylines are referred to in India. Devgn’s supernatural thriller “Shaitaan” is in fourth place.

“Definitely more audiences are coming to the theaters now. I think if you have a content-backed project and have a trailer which is true to the film, it will engage with more audiences,” Devgn said.

Devgn is currently shooting for Rohit Shetty’s “Singham Again” and Raj Kumar Gupta’s “Raid 2.” His film with Neeraj Pandey, “Auron Mein Kahan Dum Tha,” is set to release soon.

“Maidaan” is currently on release.