When contacted, director Apoorva Lakhia said, "Although it would be an honour for any filmmaker to have India's most iconic actor in his film, Amitji won't be playing a role in Zanjeer. That would put an extra pressure on Ram Charan Teja who plays the angry cop that Amitji had played in the original Zanjeer."
Lakhia fondly recalls an incident from Shootout At Lokhandwala, the last film in which he had directed Big B and Sanjay Dutt.
"In the dialogue, Mr Dutt had to say a Hindi cussword c****ya to Amitji. Mr Dutt refused, but Amitji insisted. However, when it was time to say the dialogue, Mr Dutt just couldn't utter the word in front of Amitji although Amitji kept encouraging him. Finally, we had to change the word."
"That's the level of Amitji's commitment and professionalism. I'd have given anything to have him in my Zanjeer. But that was not meant to be. The Bachchans have always supported me in every endeavour," he added.
When Zanjeer hit the screens in 1973, it turned out to be Amitabh's first blockbuster and after that there was no looking back for him.
Lakhia said, "The original Zanjeer was a turning-point in not just Amitji's life and career, but several others. I'd have loved to have him in Zanjeer. And he'd have somehow accommodated my ardent wish. However, it'd be unfair to put Amitji in an uncomfortable situation by asking him to do this for me."