Sisters no more

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By The Telegraph Online
  • Published 10.03.06

Sisters no more

It was supposed to be the casting coup of the season. Lara Dutta and Priyanka Chopra together as sisters in Dharmesh Darshan’s Aap Ki Khatir. The two former beauty queens and friends coming together after their joint debut in Suneel Darshan’s blockbuster Andaaz. So what happened? Lara Dutta has decided to do the disappearing act from this makeover film. And the panic-stricken director approached Amisha Patel to take Lara Dutta’s place. Amisha graciously agreed to step into Lara’s place. Otherwise, Aap Ki Khatir would have been in serious trouble. What could be the reason for the ever-professional Ms Dutta’s change of mind? The official reason given is?the usual date problem. But according to those in the know, there’s more to Lara’s ‘no’ than meets the eye. Says a source close to the project, “She obviously got insecure about being in the same frame as Priyanka who has made a lot more headway since they first starred together. Lara’s friends are constantly reminding her of Priyanka’s wise moves as compared to Lara’s own rather shabby career choices. When the two started together doing Andaaz they were neck-and-neck. Lara couldn’t be happy with how far she got left behind. Coming together for another movie would only have reminded people of the two actresses’ differing star value. Priyanka seems clueless about the reason for the 11th-hour change. “Lara and I have never had any problems. In fact, I’ll always cherish how much she did for me when I was just starting out. And we had great fun doing Andaaz together. I was really looking forward to working with her again. Since we were playing sisters we had lots and lots of scenes together. Though I regret the change I’m sure I’ll really enjoy working with Amisha, especially since Dharmesh is such a ladies’ director and a truly dependable friend.” ? SKJ

Sujal and Kusum move to film

The Big B of the small screen will soon make his debut on the big screen. Yes, Rajeev ‘Sujal’ Khandelwal who left Kahiin To Hoga after his sense and sensibility got jarred by the saas-bahu nonsense first tried some macho roles in Time Bomb and CID and now it’s time for him to give film a chance. His debut film is called Goa to London. And this angry young man of television is doing a routine boy-meets-girl story where the hero follows his love to London. The producers are very happy with him. Contrary to his picky nature he seem to have loved the story and immediately said ‘yes’. Arrey baba this is the big screen, na! Is he such a dud to say ‘no’ to such an offer? Now look what happened to Nausheen Ali Sardar who left her hit serial, Kkusum, to debut in Aakash Pandey’s film, Do Dilon Ke Khel Mein, and the film never got released. Now she has signed Vicky Tejwani’s Mumbai Marathon opposite Bikram Saluja. And she is playing a doctor there. This film also stars Mandira Bedi another TV star. Which is good in a way for Nausheen coz with Mandira around the film is sure to get released...



Aishwarya and Rani

Will woos Ash; and Rani cold

For once, it seems like Ash hasn’t gone calling on Hollywood. Rather Hollywood came knocking at her door. “I really want to act with Ash. My last film Hitch was first offered to her, but that didn’t work out since she was busy doing Bride and Prejudice.” That’s what the Holly biggie Will Smith claimed on his recent visit to Mumbai! The role opposite Will thus went to the Cuban American actress Eva Mendes. The actor-singer further heaped praise on the Indian beauty. “She is smart, beautiful and she has a powerful energy around her. She doesn’t have to do much, just stand there. I’m here to make any movie she wants to work on with me.”

Will Smith was so enamoured with the green-eyed diva that he went on: “Ash is a big and sought after name in our part of the world.” It’s actually a big slap for all those who earlier claimed that Ash’s Hollywood demand was just manufactured hype. “I think what she has done is truly commendable. Aishwarya has truly represented India, not just in Hollywood, but globally as well. Hitch did not happen but maybe things will materialise in the near future,” the Man In Black added. When someone asked him what were the things he would do if he were to be the President of the United States for a day, Will exclaimed, “I would immediately give Aishwarya Rai US citizenship!” All this adulation apparently hasn’t gone down well with many. Ash’s arch-rival Rani giving Will the cold shoulder didn’t get missed by anyone when he came onstage to present her with the best actress award at the recent ceremony. If Rani acted with Will, would it be called Cold? ? Sampurn