Says a source close to Amrita, "UTV was to complete the film in January 2009 and Amrita had given them her dates. They cancelled the schedule and took fresh dates for March, then April, May, August and finally, September. Each time, their schedule would get cancelled.
Till October, no shoot happened." Last Friday, she bumped into director Vicky Chopra and asked him about the film. He told her she was no longer part of the film and had been replaced because of her pregnancy."
The mom-to-be is devastated with the news! She told Vicky that they should have at least informed her about it. The source adds, "They kept taking Amu's dates from January to September and cancelling the shoot. She had even told them that she'd shoot from March to May as the bump wouldn't show until later but they didn't use her dates then. She has shot for the film and had 10 days of work left. Now her part has been edited out and is being re-shot with another actress."
The first shoot was in Cape Town in October last year and the film was to have been completed by January 2009. The delay has been from the side of the producers but the actress is being made to pay the price." Amrita says, "Yes, I have been thrown out of the film because of my condition. I wouldn't like to say anything else."
Director Vicky Chopra says, "I would not like to comment on it. All I'd like to say is that everything is under control the way we wanted it and shooting will begin again from December. It's too early to say anything else."
Vikas Bahl, Chief Creative Officer, UTV Motion Pictures, says, "Yes, Amrita will need to be replaced because of this development but the decision is totally mutual and with her consent." But Amrita insists that she was thrown out of the project without being informed. Bahl says, "No comments on that as we are sure that she was informed."
However Amrita maintains, "No. I didn't know till a week back and after that, what could I say?"
The story of Season's Greetings begins on December 30 and ends with the sunrise on January 1. The different stories culminate into one crazy New Year's party, where all the stories having travelled differently so far, become one. Nandana Sen and Amrita play sisters in one story.
Advocate Purnima Bhatia says, "If Amrita didn't have a written contract specifying that she would be thrown out of the film if she got pregnant, then she certainly can't be thrown out of it. A pregnant actress can't be thrown out of a film if it's not part of her contract specifying otherwise, if she can prove that she can continue with the shoot and tell them she's ready for whatever role they will give her to do.
“The producers could have also waited for her for six months till she delivered. Since it was because of the delay on the part of the producer, she can't be thrown out. Amrita can sue her producers for specific performance of the contract suit and ask for damages. Also, she's not the main character so the script can be altered to suit her changed status as is done sometimes on TV. Amrita can claim that she is still ready to go on shooting and that they did not utilise her dates when she gave it to them."