According to sources in the state government, Arbaaz Khan Productions sought the green signal from the government to "commence shooting in the beautiful city". A letter to this effect has also reached the Film Bandhu, a government body set up to oversee film development in the state. The five-day shooting would be conducted, "if all security and administrative issues are settled", between Sep 9 and 14, a source said.
The film unit has sought permission to shoot in many parts of the city, known for its rare mix of traditional Mughal-Nawab era and modern architecture. During a promotional campaign of his spy thriller "Ek Tha Tiger", Salman had also visited some locations and had "given his mind" on the possibilities of shooting locations. However, mobbed by crowds and faced with lax security, he had aired his "apprehensions" about his brother's production house eventually shooting here.
But sources in the film unit have confirmed the presence of Salman during the shoot. The "Dabangg 2" team would be shooting in locales like the City Montessori School, LDA-Kanpur road, the bylanes of Qaiserbagh Baradari, lanes of Chowk, Pulwanwa Chowk, Mirza Mandi and Sadar Road near the Annexe - the power centre of the Uttar Pradesh government.
On Sep 11-12, many scenes of "Dabangg 2", which is scheduled for release in December this year, would be shot in Rizvi House, Sarkata Nullah under the Sahadatganj police station, Hotel Banquet and Jahangirabad Palace. However, a formal approval is yet to be given for the shoot in these areas, but a senior Film Bandhu official told IANS that "it was just a matter of time" that the Salman-starrer got the "necessary approvals".
"The city police chief and the district magistrate have been sounded on the matter and necessary okays are being worked upon," said the official. When the shooting of the film began in March this year, the film's director-producer Arbaaz Khan had said that some parts would be shot in Kanpur - the industrial hub of Uttar Pradesh. The plans to do so were subsequently changed and a set depicting the city of Kanpur was created at the Kamalistan Studios in Mumbai, where the first schedule of the film was shot.
"Dabangg 2" with all its masala elements has Chulbul Pandey, the role essayed by Salman in the first film, as a cop around Kanpur. Other than Salman and Sonakshi Sinha in the lead roles, veteran actor Vinod Khanna has been repeated in the film while Prakash Raj has replaced Sonu Sood as the main villain. Abhinav Kashyap, the director of the original film "Dabangg", a money spinner, has also been replaced by Arbaaz himself.
Arbaaz had recently scouted for possible locations both in Kanpur and Lucknow. Some shots will be canned outside the Kanpur railway station as well. Unit members and equipment for the shoot are likely to be brought to the city mid-next week, sources said and informed that Rati Shankar Tripathi, chief coordinator line production, is coordinating between the state government, district administration and the film's shooting unit. Prakash Raj, the villain of the film, will be in Lucknow for the shoot, confirmed Tripathi.