If everything works as planned Vidya Balan will pair up with John Abraham on screen once again. Filmmaker Sanjay Gupta of White Feather Films, who readies to direct Shootout At Wadala, the much-talked about sequel to Shootout At Lokhandwala (2007), both produced by soap queen Ekta Kapoor, is confident that he’ll have his desired leading lady on board soon.
For the uninitiated, while Nikhil Advani’s Salaam-EIshq (2007) was on floors, it was reported that John and Vidya, paired opposite each other in the movie, were more than just colleagues and friends. That had supposedly disturbed John’s then-longstanding relationship with actor Bipasha Basu. The actors haven’t worked together after the episode.
“I’m going to make sure that Vidya acts in the movie. I will beg, borrow, steal and threaten to rope her in,” he says. “I only have her in mind to play the character. And Vidya is a good friend of mine, and she also has a longstanding promise that she’ll work on my next project.”
According to Gupta, the character in question, Manya Surve’s girlfriend – a widow with two children – is ‘exceptionally strong’ for the actor to decline. “Vidya and Ekta are also thick buddies. So, I am confident we will manage to get her for the role,” Gupta asserts.
The actor has been filming The Dirty Picture, the producer’s tribute to the item girls imported from the South. John will emulate the dreaded gangster of the 1970s who was shot dead in what is recorded as the first police encounter in the city.
Gupta, who returns to direction after five years, says the sequel will be mounted on a bigger scale. “Shootout At Wadala is set in the ‘70s and ‘80s. It’s not just a shootout, it’s a saga. In Lokhandwala, the story was basic with an elaborate climax. Manya’s life will serve as a great story too. And no one can say I’m forging a story. Every detail is present in the police files,” he beams.
The film that will be on the floors by December, will be largely shot in and around the city with a few sequences that could be shot at a couple of locations like Ratnagiri.