If the turn of events is anything to go by, Arshad Warsi will be sorely missed when Indra Kumar starts shooting Double Dhamaal early next year.
A couple of weeks ago, HT Cafe reported that Warsi and Riteish Deshmukh might not feature in the Dhamaal sequel. While Deshmukh has subsequently confirmed his participation, Aftab Shivdasani has apparently replaced Warsi.
Kumar and co-producer Ashok Thakeria have repeatedly maintained that they won't make the sequel without Sanjay Dutt. Since the actor has allotted dates in January and February 2009, the dates of other actors like Deshmukh, Warsi, Javed Jafferi and Aashish Chowdhry were being adjusted accordingly. But according to a source Warsi had already committed these dates to Marching Ants' maiden venture, The Hit being directed by his friend Rajeev Chudasama.
"He's been trying towork things out but so far that hasn't been possible. Since Rajeev can't postpone his film, Arshad had no choice but to opt out of Double Dhamaal ," says our source.
Second time lucky
It's not easy for the makers to find an apt replacement for Warsi since he has carved a niche for himself as a strong parallel lead.
"Induji has been in talks with Aftab to fill in for Arshad. Aftab has heard the script and given his nod to the projects. He's almost a part of Double Dhamaal even though he hasn't signed up for it officially," reveals our source.
Interestingly, Shivdasani was initially offered the character of the dimwit Manav Shrivastav in Dhamaal . But back then he didn't have the dates required and Jafferi was signed up instead. Points out of source, "Given how successful Dhamaal turned out to be I'm sure he wouldn't want to miss out on the sequel."