Mahie was director's choice for role that went to TV actress Sakshi Tanwar in Mohalla Assi. Apparently, producers and (allegedly) lead actor Sunny Deol felt she would be too young to play the part
What? Mahie Gill was the director's choice to play Sunny Deol's wife in Dr Chandraprakash Dwivedi's Mohalla Assi, based on Dr Kashinath Singh's Kashi Ka Assi. TV actress Sakshi Tanwar was the producer's choice for the film being shot on location in Benares till March 15.
Sunny Deol in Mohalla Assi and (inset) Sakshi Tanwar
So? The role eventually went to Sakshi.
Source-seak: "The producers had originally decided to cast Sakshi as Sunny's wife. The director felt the Dev D actress would suit the role better. But just before shooting began, Sakshi replaced Mahie."
"Sunny is responsible for the last minute change in the casting. He was a tad uncomfortable romancing Mahie who played cousin Abhay's lover in Dev D. He also felt that the girl looked a bit younger for the role of his wife. So out went Gill and in came Tanwar."
Director-Speak: Says Dwivedi, "We screen-tested a lot of people. Our producers felt that Mahie looking quite young for the role and that Sunny's pairing went better with Sakshi. It was the producer's decision not mine."
He strongly denied that it was Deol's doing. "Sunny never interfered in casting. In fact, he never even discussed it. Suitability, availability of dates and price are deciding factors in casting and I let my producers take such calls.
Mahie Coffirms: "I was finalised for the role. But later on, I found out that they went with Sakshi because I was looking young for the role. Maybe, the film was not in my destiny. It's okay. I have no regrets. I am sure I will get more chances to work with Dwivedi Sir."