April 22, 2010

SRK dumps Ritesh for Arjun

Shah Rukh Khan, Arjun Rampal and Ritesh Deshmukh were close friends till SRK chose Arjun over Ritesh to play a baddie in Ra.One.

They say three is a crowd. And going by this recent incident, the commonly held belief seems to be true. The close friendship between Shah Rukh Khan, Ritesh Deshmukh and Arjun Rampal has now reached an impasse. The cosy bond now only involves SRK and Arjun while Ritesh has been left to fend for himself.

Buzz is that Shah Rukh chose Arjun over Ritesh to play the villain in his home production Ra.One. Despite Ritesh being the original choice, Shah Rukh eventually brought in Arjun to play the same role.

A source says, “Ritesh and not Arjun was the first choice to play a baddie in Ra.One. Director Anubhav Sinha also wanted Ritesh as the film’s villain as he had worked with the actor in Cash. Everything was going fine and Ritesh was very excited about the project as his look and remuneration was also decided. But the next thing Ritesh read in the papers is that Arjun is playing the bad man in Ra.One.”

“Even when Arjun was suffering from a back problem for a brief period and he was not too sure if he would play the role, SRK didn’t ask Ritesh to step in. Ritesh’s sudden ouster was so unprofessional,” says the source.

Even though Ritesh was shocked at the unfair treatment, he didn’t confront Shah Rukh. “Ritesh is a very mild-mannered guy. He undoubtedly felt very disappointed but he didn’t express his displeasure to SRK. He only talked about it to a few of his close friends. Shah Rukh or Anubhav should have at least informed him that he is no longer in the film,” adds the source.

While Shah Rukh’s character in Ra.One is of a super-hero , buzz is that Arjun will be playing his nemesis. The sci-fi film, which went on the floors early this month, has Kareena Kapoor playing the female lead. The film is based on gaming, bad guys and super heroes.

We sent text messages to Shah Rukh, Anubhav Sinha but they remained unavailable for comment.

However, Ritesh says that he was never offered the film.