So I just watched this Hindi movie Khel, starring former Indian cricketer Ajay Jadeja as the lead actor, it's not something he's particularly good at. Anyways that's a topic for a different article. This just made me wonder about a few other well known cricketers that have tried to make it big in the movie/T.V. business. Here's a list of what I could find:
1. Mentioned above the infamous Ajay Jadeja, an amazing cricketer who fell out of favour with the BCCI and the public with his apparent involvement in the match-fixing scandal to rock Indian cricket. He recently made his debut with the film Khel, and if some of the articles in newspapers are to be believed, it isn't going to be his last.
2. Vinod Kambli is another that quickly springs to mind, childhood friend of Sachin Tendulkar's, somehow never managed to get his career going regardless of the fact that he was an immensely talented cricketer. He tried his hand in a movie called Annarth, again not something he would be particularly proud of as the movie failed to make any impact. A wonderful character though, I myself would have loved to have seen him fulfill his talent in cricket.
3. As cricinfo tells me Salim Durani, the very famous Indian cricketer born in Afganistan (remember that for trivia night guys) was one of the very first ones to start this trend. He acted in a movie called Charitra, the movie bombed at the box office. Seems to me to be a common trend here in this list.
4. Salil Ankola a former Indian fast bowler, I think goes against the trend of cricketers failing as actors. From memory I think he has acted in a few movies, but he went into acting in TV series and has since done really well as an actor on the smaller screen.
5. One of the very best allrounders of all time Kapil Dev has ventured into movies too. He has acted in not one but two feature films, though not full blown lead character roles. The movies he's acted in are Iqbal the Rampur Express, and Chain Kulli ki Main Kulli.
6. Sandeep Patil and Syed Kirmani were both part of India's World Cup winning team of '83, acted together in a movie called Kabhi Ajnabi The. Kirmani played a negative role and was actually pretty good at it too.
7. A recent movie named Victory though involve a few cricketers in the one movie. From what I've read we have Brett Lee, Mike Hussey, Shoaib Malik, Sohail Tanvir, Jayasuriya, Ajantha Mendis, Harbhajan Singh, Rohit Sharma, RP Singh all involved in bit parts in the movie.
8. Brett Lee apart from his cameo role in the above mentioned movie Victory, has also sung a song and shot a music video with one of Indias leading singers. The song is called 'You are the one for me'. The song according to me was pretty average and the media was kind enough to advise Brett on not giving up his day job. In any case here's a link to the music video on youtube, if anyone wants a laugh. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=48eHkZfnGug
9. The very talented Pakistani opening batsman Mohsin Khan, who is known for being the first from his country to score a double century at Lords, departed from cricket to pursue a career in Indian movies.He married a famous Indian actress Reena Roy, had a relatively short career, featuring in movies such as Gunehgar Kaun, Laatsaab, Pratikaar, Fateh, Saathi, etc. He later divorced his wife and returned back to live in Pakistan.
A fair few cricketers have now tried their hand at dancing on the small screen too in Ek Khiladi, Ek Haseena; a reality TV show. It had the likes of Harbhajan Singh, S. Sreesanth all trying to out dance each other, while Wasim Akram was there judging their performances.
Well this is just a short list of what I knew off hand and with a little help of cricinfo.com. I would love to know of any other cricketers that have ventured into Movies or TV, would love to know if cricketers from other countries have ventured on the same path as well.