"Even though we fictionalised it, cricket coach Bob Woolmer’s death was the take-off point for Jannat. And the recent match-fixing scandal could be the trigger for Jannat 2," says actor Emraan Hashmi.
Hashmi is referring to the News Of The World exposé involving cricket matches allegedly being rigged by bookie Mazhar Majeed, with Pakistani cricketers - Mohammad Asif, Mohammad Amir and Salman Butt.
Jannat’s producer, Mahesh Bhatt, echoes the plan, even going a step further. “The match fixing controversy has the potential to be a great storyline to Jannat’s sequel. And since Mohd Asif has said in the past that he would like to try his luck in Bollywood, we may approach him to play a key character,” says Bhatt.Jannat director Kunal Deshmukh says, "We may take bits from the scandal and fictionalise it for the sequel." In Jannat, Hashmi strolls into the locker room and offers a player R50 lakh for throwing a match. The actor admits that even though he was playing to the gallery, he’d met such ‘fixers’ while researching for the role: "They (bookies and players) are looking for easy money and are unapologetic about how they get it."
The recent controversy has popped up several names of bookies. Do they ring a bell? “No,” Hashmi shrugs. “We were completely in the dark about the identities of these guys. Kunal (Deshmukh) and I met them two months before shoot.”
While Jannat released in the middle of IPL Season 1, Hashmi’s hoping Jannat 2 will release during IPL 4: “Jannat 2 will definitely be bigger, better and meaner.”
Fixing video is a hit
The video of the News of the World sting operation that exposed the recent match fixing scandal has become a hit on YouTube, with more than 3 lakh views already. Interestingly, the scene from the movie, Jannat, which shows the ’bookie’, Emraan Hashmi, paying R1 crore and a Rolex to a look-alike of a former Indian captain has also fetched 1.5 lakh views.