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HindustanTimes Wed,22 Oct 2014

Shahid Kapoor’s loss, Varun Dhawan’s gain?

Prashant Singh, Hindustan Times  Mumbai, September 11, 2012
First Published: 12:49 IST(11/9/2012) | Last Updated: 18:15 IST(11/9/2012)

His debut movie is yet to hit the big screen, but Varun Dhawan already seems to be in demand. Even before Karan Johar’s Student Of The Year (SOTY) releases, the 25-year-old is believed to be on the verge of signing director Maneesh Sharma’s yet-untitled film. Earlier, Shahid Kapoor was to play the lead in the film, but he couldn’t do so due to other commitments.

Although some reports have claimed that Varun’s SOTY co-star Sidharth Malhotra is also auditioning for the same part, industry insiders say that David Dhawan’s son is on the top of the list. “Nothing is official yet, but Varun has managed to impress Maneesh and Aditya Chopra (the film is produced by Yash Raj Films). Karan is also going all out to back his discovery,” says a source.
A few days ago, it was revealed that the shooting schedule of the film had been postponed. It was originally scheduled to go on the floors in September. The makers attributed the change to their decision to include lip-sync songs that earlier were not part of the film. “The unfortunate result of that was that Shahid, who had three other projects back-to-back, wasn’t able to accommodate the new schedule,” reads an official communication from YRF.

While Varun seems likely to sign the film, the makers are yet to decide on the female lead. Rumours claim that the role might go to Parineeti Chopra. “YRF is unlikely to talk about the casting of this film until SOTY releases. But as things stand right now, it looks like Varun has a strong chance to replace Shahid,” says the source. Karan remained unavailable for a comment, while YRF’s spokesperson Rafiq Gangjee said: “There is no truth to this.”

What is Shahid up to?
Apart from the average-grosser Badmaash Company (2010), Shahid Kapoor hasn’t delivered any major hits. Though he is known to be picky about his films, during the promotions of his last film (Teri Meri Kahaani), he was overheard saying that he would be doing three films every year; which explains his choc-a-bloc schedule — Prabhudheva’s Namak, Bejoy Nambiar’s untitled next and Rajkumar Santoshi’s Phata Poster Nikla Hero. “I am confident that he will pull off a masala film on his own,” says Prabhudheva.

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