On Friday morning producer Gaurang Doshi woke up to a rude shock with actress Ileana D’Cruz threatening to take legal action for announcing her name as part of the Aankhen 2 cast.
Doshi claims the actress is lying when she says she turned down the offer. Rather than feel outraged and angry over what he claims to be a blatant lie, Doshi couldn’t stop chuckling over Ileana’s charges. “Tell me, why would I announce her name falsely? My film already has Bachchan Saab, Anil Kapoor, Arshad Warsi and Arjun Rampal. What does my project gain from her presence? Is she Deepika or Katrina? Agreed she is part of a hit film (Rustom). But so is Esha Gupta.”
Shedding light on what really happened Gaurang says, “Ms Ileana D’Cruz met me at the Taj Land’s End two days before the Mahurat. We met at 12.30 pm. She was with her manager Nimisha. I was accompanied by my director Anees Bazmee and my co-writer Neeraj Pathak. We narrated her role and the script to Ms D Cruz. She was in her own words, very excited by the role.”
Gaurang says Ileana immediately agreed to do the film. “That was why I am surprised. Just two days before the Mahurat she was all for it. We spoke terms and conditions and I agreed to get back to her with the contract in a week’s time. But two days after the Mahurat she does a volte face, and claims she never agreed to do the film. I wonder who poisoned her against our project. I’ve so many well-wishers in the film industry, you see.”
The producer breaks into peals of laughter. “I am just so amused by this. What face-value would she add to my film that I would fib about her presence? I’ve been able to put together Aankhen 2 after years of hardship, struggle and personal and professional pain and humiliation. People in the industry thought I was finished. The only reason I held on to the belief that I could swing a project as big as Aankhen 2 was Mr Bachchan. If he had not supported me I wouldn’t be standing on my feet again. With him in my project I don’t need anyone else. Mr Bachchan is God for every filmmaker. He is more than God for me.”
Gaurang throws forward a challenge to Ileana, “I promise to get a bigger name than her for my film in the next few weeks. If I don’t then you can re-name me ‘A.shole’, to go with all the ‘A’ names I’ve accumulated in my film: Amitabh, Anil, Arjun, Arshad, Anees….”