"Yes, Katrina Kaif is doing Tees Maar Khan", confirms Shirish Kunder, producer of the film which would be directed by Farah Khan. If Katrina was indeed such an obvious choice and was in any case being discussed from Day One, what made it so long for the makers to spill the beans? Why the mystery around the announcement when an early declaration of the cast may have probably saved quite a few from any heartburn?
"Well, it wasn't that obvious to begin with after all", says Shirish who has worked with Preity Zinta in his debut flick Jaan-E-Mann, "Initially we were looking for a new face in Tees Maar Khan. Farah had to make up her mind and eventually she settled down for an established leading lady. This is where Katrina came in." The fact remains that during this entire period of uncertainty, there were three names that had made it to the top of the list - Katrina Kaif, Priyanka Chopra and Sonam Kapoor.
While Katrina always seemed to be the first choice due to her hit record with Akshay and a crackling chemistry that she had shared with him in each of their films together, Priyanka was said to be a strong contender too. And why not? After all, their coming together would not just have made for a great piece of news but also a welcome sign for their fans who have loved them together in each of their films beginning from Andaaz to Mujhse Shaadi Karogi. Sonam Kapoor was said to be in contention as well and for the upcoming girl, it would have been a huge break had Tees Maar Khan come her way.
"See, all of this was mere speculation. Whether it is Priyanka or anyone else, none of them was approached per se. Yes, they were in strong consideration but so were all other good names in the industry as well. Other than Akshay (Kumar) and Akshaye (Khanna), everyone else was in a 'consideration phase'", smiles Shirish who is mighty excited to begin work on the film beginning 1st March.
The release date of Tees Maar Khan has already been decided for 24th December. In fact this would be for the first time in three years (after Taare Zameen Par, Ghajini and 3 Idiots) that there won't be an Aamir Khan film releasing on the Christmas weekend. "That's true, we are positively coming on 24th December", says Shirish, "We begin shooting on 1st March and wrap it up all in August. I can't wait for Tees Maar Khan to go on floors. Trust me; it is going to be a true blue Farah Khan brand of commercial entertainment at its best."
Finally all the speculations can be laid to rest. Ever since Tees Maar Khan was announced with Akshay Kumar in the lead, there were rumours abound about the leading lady in the film. The game of musical chairs was on and there were number of names that were being considered. However, all the juggling around is over and though it hardly comes as a surprise, the fact is that Katrina Kaif has made it to the top of the list and is now the chosen one.