If you saw the tall amiable rookie cop who accompanied Randeep Hooda in the initial scenes ofJannat 2
and then vanished, you might want to know that he is Mahesh Bhatt's latest prot?g? Imran Zahid.
Imran played the shoe-throwing journalist Muntadhar Al-Zaidi in Mahesh Bhatt's stage adaptationThe Last Salute
. He is now being launched as one of the leading men inJism 2
. Imran is also the lead in Mahesh Bhatt'sChandu
, a bio-pic on the slain Jawaharlal Nehru University student leader Chandrashekhar Prasad.
With such lofty plans up his sleeves, one was shocked to see Imran making a 'guest' appearance in two fleeting shots with Randeep Hooda and Brijendra Kala. Even more shocking is the fact that Imran himself was shocked to see himself inJannat 2
The revised plan, after Imran's role inJannat 2
did not shape up as one of the leads, was to scrap his role completely and re-launch the actor in the Bhatts'Jism
. That's the way Subhash Ghai had dealt with Madhuri Dixit's career. After he shot a dance sequence with her inKarma
and felt she had the potential to become a full-fledged leading lady, he scrapped the dance and launched her inUttar Dakshin
Imran had been promised that his part would be completely scrapped and re-shot with another actor.
Shell-shocked after seeing himself unannounced on screen, Imran blurted out, "I can't believe I saw myself inJannat 2
. I was not meant to be part of it. I had left the film after the first schedule. My part was taken by an actor called Rajinder, the cop who gets shot at the end. I don't know why the director Kunal Deshmukh decided to keep my shots."
Strangely days before the release ofJannat 2
, Mahesh Bhatt had announced on a micro-blogging site that Imran would be making his debut not withJannat 2
Says Imran, "Honestly I'm in shock. It was officially decided that I won't be part ofJannat 2
. The ethical thing to do would have been to remove my scenes completely and re-shoot with my replacement."
Imran admits this two-bit appearance could damage his career.
"Magar ab jo ho gaya so ho gaya
. It can't be undone, so no point crying over it. It was Mahesh Bhatt saab's decision that I opt out ofJannat 2
. He thought I didn't fit in. Maybe they were unable to re-shoot all my scenes."
When asked about Imran Zahid unceremonious, unannounced and uncredited debut inJannat 2
director Kunal Deshmukh said, "Imran and I decided to part ways because his role didn't shape up well. I couldn't re-shoot the scenes with Imran that were shot on the ISBT Bridge and in Pahadganj in Delhi. Those were tough location to shoot in. And we couldn't obtain permission again."