Shashank Khaitan's espionage thriller starring Varun Dhawan on backburner

Updated: May 29, 2019, 07:20 IST | Sonil Dedhia | Mumbai

Months after Rannbhoomi was pushed, Badrinath director Shashank Khaitan puts actioner with Varun Dhawan on the backburner

Varun Dhawan and Shashank Khaitan
Varun Dhawan and Shashank Khaitan

Close on the heels of Dhadak's (2018) release, director Shashank Khaitan had announced that he was reuniting with his favourite actor Varun Dhawan for an espionage thriller. Touted as an ambitious action entertainer, the film was to be backed by Karan Johar, thus completing the troika behind the Dulhania series. However, in the latest development, the project — which was to go on floors this year — has been put on the backburner as the director has not been able to crack the script. Interestingly, their epic war saga, Rannbhoomi, was pushed to make way for the thriller.

Confirming the news, Khaitan tells mid-day, "I had cracked a great first half, but I botched things up in the second half. Since there is so much great material coming out [from the industry], I felt that if I don't have anything new to say, I shouldn't say it. So as of now, I have put the film on the backburner."

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While it would be convenient for him to imagine a third instalment after Humpty Sharma Ki Dulhania (2014) and Badrinath Ki Dulhania (2017), the filmmaker doesn't want to cash in on the franchise without a strong script. "It's a franchise that has been loved. So, Karan, Alia [Bhatt], Varun and I are conscious that we don't want to do it just for the money. If I come across a script that naturally lends itself to the franchise, we will do it." For now, he is enjoying his stint as a judge on the second season of Dance Deewane. "I like its unique concept of having three different generations competing," he says.

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