Suniel Shetty’s Once Upon A Time In Mumbai, in which Ajay Devgn plays a gangster based on the infamous Haji Mastan, has hit yet another snag. Despite assurances from director Milan Luthria as recently as October that the film was not being shelved, the latest schedule of shootings have been canceled. Set in the Mumbai underworld of the 1970s, Once Upon A Time In Mumbai, also stars Kangana Ranaut, whose character is said to be based on Bollywood actress Madhubala, Rock On!!‘s Prachi Desai, and “serial kisser” Emraan Hashmi, whose Tum Mile releases on Friday.
While no official statement has been released, rumor has it that Ajay Devgn is unhappy with the way the script has shaped up and is demanding changes. This is far from the first time that he has been blamed for demanding changes, although the directors usually deny it, as Ram Gopal Varma said about Ram Gopal Varma Ki Aag, “Ajay did not ask me to make changes in the script. We’ve worked together before in Company and Bhoot and there’s no problem at all…It may seem like a delay because we started shooting in September. But it was meant to be shot in September.”
The ambitious Once Upon A Time In Mumbai has faced other problems. Director Milan Luthria has had to tackle problems from finding vintage buildings to shoot for an authentic look to crowd control for the outdoor locations in Mumbai. And the fact that the film is overbudget also has co-producer Ekta Kapoor worried.
Although it seems to be delayed now, with so much of the film already in the can, it is unlikely that they will scrap the project all together.