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Akshay Kumar's Kesari to be released in Japan on 16 August

The actor plays Havildar Ishar Singh, a Sikh soldier in the British army, who leads his men in the Battle of Saragarhi in 1897.

Sonal Pandya

This Independence Day, Akshay Kumar has two reasons to celebrate. The actor is part of the ensemble cast of Mission Mangal (2019), a film that explores India's successful Mars orbiter mission, which will be released in India on 15 August, and his historical film Kesari (2019), which opens in Japan on 16 August.

This is not the actor's first film to be shown in the land of the rising sun. His Pad Man (2018) was released in Japan in January this year and earned $563,337 (over Rs4 crore) in six weeks.

Kesari, in which Akshay Kumar plays Havildar Ishar Singh in the 1897 Battle of Saragarhi, was released in India on 21 March this year. According to one legend, 21 Sikh soldiers of the British army took on over 10,000 invaders in the heroic and epic battle.

Besides China, other international markets are also opening up for Indian films. Other Indian films like English Vinglish (2012), starring Sridevi, and 2.0 (2018), starring Rajinikanth and Akshay Kumar, have done well in Japan.

Interestingly, indie films like Mukti Bhawan (2017) have also had successful runs in the country. Japan has some of the highest ticket prices in the world, going up to 1,900 yen (around Rs1,230) per head.