Was Sushant Singh Rajput replaced by Ranveer Singh in Befikre? Actor said he wouldn’t have done the film anyway
Actor Sushant Singh Rajput’s strained relationship with Yash Raj Films reportedly forced him to sever all ties with the studio, which produced his films Shuddh Desi Romance and Detective Byomkesh Bakshy!. It was widely speculated at the time that Sushant was unhappy by the fact that his contemporaries Ranveer Singh and Arju Kapoor were being favoured by the studio.
However, Sushant in a no-holds-barred interview to Hindustan Times addressed everything from his relationship to YRF and an alleged rivalry with Ranveer. “Let me clear it once and for all. I was never offered Befikre,” he said. “But had I been offered, I wouldn’t have done it. I know it’s easier to decide after the results are out but I have a reason. If the same production house is offering me a niche film like Detective Byomkesh Bakshy (2015), I would do it because Dibakar Banerjee (director) has a different interpretation of the old classic; and I would do a Paani where Shekhar Kapur (film-maker) will be raising a very important and immediate issue…”
Befikre, directed by Aditya Chopra and co-starring Vaani Kapoor, was critically reviled and underperformed at the box office. Sushant died by suicide last week, at the age of 34. He was suffering from depression, and his death has opened new discussions around the topic of nepotism in Bollywood.
Sushant continued, “If Befikre was representing the new-age youth of India and romance as what it was claiming, it would have been great irrespective of the box-office numbers. But unfortunately, it didn’t do that, and hence I would not be interested. I am not suggesting that films should only reflect reality (like Pink, Neerja, or Dhoni biopic). They could also be totally fanciful yet great films like The Jungle Book (2016), which was also very popular. But it’s extremely important to know and then claim what you have made. It’s a wonderful new India, and it is reflecting in the way we are bridging the gap between our ‘hits’ and ‘good’ films.”
Asked about why the media was reporting about an alleged rivalry with Ranveer, Sushant had said, “Probably, it’s because we are about the same age and also because I opted out of the old management (Aditya Chopra’s company) and he (Ranveer) decided otherwise, and so some comparisons can be made. But I feel the choices we young actors make will be a differentiator when it comes to films that are made, our respective careers and the taste of our audience. We should not think about all the present popular trends but should also be willing to take educated risks and should not shy away from failures in trying something innovative.”
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