"I haven't given any statement whatsoever around the man who would eventually be playing the role of Vijay Dinanath Chauhan that was made iconic by Mr. Amitabh Bachchan. All I have said is that yes, we are going ahead with a remake of Agneepath and that's about it", announces Karan Johar. Whether it is Hrithik, Abhishek or someone else, Karan must be having a wish list though, isn't it? "Well, the wish list is to get the screenplay right", laughs Karan, "For the moment nothing else is more important than that."
Even though the film is coming under the banner of Dharma Productions, Karan won't be coming behind the camera for the film. "True, I would be stepping aside and the film would be directed by Karan Malhotra who has assisted me on My Name Is Khan. That's the only thing which has been finalized; rest everything that you hear is mere speculation. We would finalize the cast once the script is locked. Currently, it is still in the process of being written."
Karan Malhotra is not really a novice when it comes to filmmaking. An erstwhile assistant director, he has also worked with Ashutosh Gowariker (Jodhaa Akbar), Farah Khan (Main Hoon Naa), Farhan Akhtar (Lakshya) and Raj Kumar Santoshi (Lajja, Pukar) amongst others.
Since it is close to two decades since the release of Agneepath (1990), would the remake have a different milieu to it? "Certainly", comes a response from Karan, "We are adapting the film from the original but ours would be a new age version that would fit in well with today's time. We really hope that we are able to do justice to the original and make the remake exciting for today's generation."
Meanwhile, at last count there are as many as seven films from the house of Dharma Productions that are in different stages of production. This includes My Name Is Khan, Wake Up Sid, Qurbaan, Koochie Koochie Hota Hai, remake of Stepmom, remake of Agneepath and I Hate Love Stories. How is he managing it all?
"Believe me; it's not difficult at all. All of you have to do is follow a three point 'mantra' - 'Delegation', 'Outsourcing' and 'Trust'. Along with that, if you have the right vision and infrastructure in place, which we do have in Dharma Productions, it isn't difficult to crack it all. That's the way you manage things and I have been fortunate enough to have a team with which it has become possible to helm number of projects at the same time", explains Karan.
Out of the seven films being made by Karan Johar, there are three of them which are very much in the pipeline. "Wake Up Sid is all set to arrive on 2nd October. Qurbaan will come in late November. Other than that, we are looking at an early 2010 release for My Name Is Khan. Yes, these have been busy and really exciting times", concludes Karan.