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Confirmed: Katrina Kaif is Salman Khan’s heroine in Bharat, replaces Priyanka Chopra

Katrina Kaif will be Salman Khan’s leading lady in Bharat after Priyanka Chopra quit the film in ‘Nick of time’, confirms director Ali Abbas Zafar.

bollywood Updated: Jul 30, 2018 13:16 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Katrina Kaif,Salman Khan,Bharat
Bharat director Ali Abbas Zafar confirmed Katrina Kaif will play Salman Khan’s leading lady.

Salman Khan’s films are always in the news but the press that Bharat has been getting since Friday is for an entirely different reason – Priyanka Chopra leaving the film ostensibly to get married to Nick Jonas and the search for her replacement after the film began its shoot. Well, the search ends now and Bharat’s new leading lady is Katrina Kaif, confirmed film’s director Ali Abbas Zafar.

Katrina will star opposite Salman in Bharat and will begin shooting for the film in September. Salman and Katrina have worked in many films earlier including the highly successful Tiger Zinda Hai and Ek Tha Tiger as well as films such as Partner, Maine Pyaar Kyun Kiya and many more. Ali Abbas had directed the duo in Tiger Zinda Hai. Salman and Katrina make for one of the most beloved Bollywood jodis and their fans will be over the moon with the Bharat announcement. The duo also performed on Dabangg tour recently.

The Bharat director said, “I am extremely excited to work with Katrina Kaif and Salman Khan once again for Bharat. We have had exciting collaborations in the past and it is very interesting to work with the duo once again. It is very delightful to work with the immensely talented actress yet again.” The film has already begun the first schedule including a grand circus sequence featuring Salman and Disha Patani.

Priyanka Chopra walked out of Salman Khan’s Bharat last week.

On Friday morning, Ali had confirmed that Priyanka had quit Bharat with a rather interesting tweet. He wrote, “Yes Priyanka Chopra is no more part of Bharat the film and the reason is very very special, she told us in the Nick of time about her decision and we are very happy for her. Team Bharat wishes Priyanka Chopra loads of love and happiness for life.” Later in the day, People magazine confirmed Priyanka and her boyfriend Nick Jonas are indeed engaged.

While Salman’s father Salim Khan and Ali were at pains to say that they have nothing against Priyanka for leaving Bharat, the CEO of Reel Life Productions, Nikhil Namit, who’s producing the film, called the actor unprofessional. “Priyanka told us she had to exit due to her engagement, two days ago. It was a little unprofessional of her to do it so suddenly,” he was quoted as saying in Mid-Day.

Over the weekend, Ali had tweeted that the film’s new leading lady will be announced soon. “Yes yes yes ... we will announce the leading lady of Bharat soon.. We have been shooting non-stop and the simultaneously preparing for international schedules,” he tweeted on Saturday morning. Bharat went on floors earlier this month with the first schedule being that of a pivotal circus sequence. Salman Khan’s Bharatalso stars Disha Patani, Tabu and Nora Fatehi.

The film will feature Salman Khan sporting five different looks and will span over 60 years. Salman Khan’s Karan-Arjun look will be recreated for the film. Bharat will be shot in Malta and Abu Dhabi, besides Punjab and Delhi in India. Bharat, produced by Atul Agnihotri’s Reel Life Production Pvt. Ltd and Bhushan Kumar’s T-Series, will release on Eid 2019.

First Published: Jul 30, 2018 09:20 IST