Speaking officially for the first time about the casting of the Agneepath remake, Karan Johar coolly and cleverly passes on the buck to his novice director Siddharth Malhotra for Abhishek Bachchan's non-presence in the remake...a casting digression that jolted everyone who thought Abhishek was a natural and inevitable inheritor of the Agneepth role.
Says Karan: “When my father (late Yash Johar) produced Agneepath, he left everything to his director Mukul Anand and kept completely away from the project. I’m carrying on the family tradition.”
“The cast for the Agneepath remake was decided by director Siddharth Malhotra. He decided on Hrithik Roshan and Priyanka Chopra. Why Hrithik and not Abhishek? I think Siddharth has his own ideas on how to present the character. I think the protagonist in the new Agneepath would be very different from how he was in the original.”
The script for the new Agneepath is also entirely revamped. Priyanka Chopra won't play a nurse, like Madhavi had done in the original. And Mithun Chakraborty's character from the original has been done away with completely.
Was there any tension about Abhishek not even being approached for the remake of Agneepath? Well, certainly not. At Manish Malhotra's fashion show, Abhishek walked up and warmly hugged Karan.
The following evening, Karan coaxed the original Agneepath protagonist Amitabh Bachchan to walk the ramp with star of the remake Hrithik Roshan, thereby putting an end to all speculation about a strain between the Bachchan parivar and Karan over the
Says Karan emotionally: “The Bachchans and my family go back a long way. Our
association is not on a film-to-film basis. It doesn't matter how many films we work in or don't work in. For the record, I will be doing at least 10 more films with Abhishek in my lifetime. He has already done two films with our banner Dharma Productions. He's doing Dostana 2 next year.”