As a 17-year-old, Akhtar worked as Yash Chopra's apprentice in Lamhe. He spent three years in ad production before directing his first film Dil Chahta Hai, which catapulted him to the big league. Over the years, he's evolved into a versatile artiste, dabbling in direction, production, writing, acting and singing. Currently, he's shooting for sports biopic Bhaag Milkha Bhaag in which he plays the protagonist Milkha Singh.
Fast Facts : In 2007, he directed a documentary Positive to spread HIV-AIDS awareness.