Saif Ali Khan, Pratik Gandhi and Divyenndu
Last year, the news about Fire had caught the attention of many as the film was to reunite Saif Ali Khan with his Dil Chahta Hai (2001) makers, Farhan Akhtar and Ritesh Sidhwani, after over two decades. The actor was supposed to play a fire-fighter in Rahul Dholakia*s directorial venture. But it looks like a Khan-Akhtar reunion is not on the cards. mid-day has learnt that Khan has bowed out of the project due to his busy date diary. The actor will be caught up with Vikram Vedha and Adipurush over the next few months.
Ritesh Sidhwani and Farhan Akhtar
With his leading man*s exit, it is heard that Dholakia went back to the drawing board and made significant changes to the script. A source close to the development reveals, "Earlier, Fire was envisioned as a single-hero project. But with Saif*s exit, the director and writer Vijay Maurya revisited the script, making it an ensemble project. They have roped in Pratik Gandhi of Scam 1992: The Harshad Mehta Story fame, and Divyenndu in the lead. The project will be a homecoming of sorts for Divyenndu, who played a key role in Farhan and Ritesh-backed Mirzapur." If all goes as per plan, Dholakia will take the film on floors next month. Excel Entertainment remained unavailable for comment.