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Neil Nitin Mukesh is spitting venom. Even as he was looking forward to a day of festivity and celebrations yesterday, he woke up to a rude surprise when he read about his ouster from Abbas Mustan's remake of The Italian Job. A tabloid report suggested that not just had he been thrown out of the film post the 'failure' of Lafangey Parindey; he was also blissfully unaware of the 'fact' himself.
"Well, looks like some people out there know more about me and my films than myself", says Neil while trying hard to control his irritation over the matter, "Just because you are not speaking, some people out there build an imaginary tale all by themselves."
So what's the real status?
"Arrey issme real ya unreal status ki kya baat hai? (There is no question of real and unreal status) It's sad that I am giving clarification on this when the fact is that I am already preparing for my role. The film is pretty much on and I am also not going anywhere. In fact Abbas-Mustan, who are currently out for location scouting, had given me such a detailed role description before leaving. They should be back in a week's time and post that there would be a further one month of preparation. We begin shooting early November."
The Italian Job has been in news for about a year and most of the pain points have been around the casting. The men in white, Abbas-Mustan, were pretty much riding high after the super success of Race. However, bringing The Italian Job has been a challenge due to its requirement of a high profile cast as well as the big budget involved.
"I am sure all the preparation is going to be worth it", Neil, who plays the character originally enacted by Edward Norton, eases up here, "The film so much belongs to the Abbas-Mustan zone. They are the masters of thrillers and The Italian Job is one kick-ass action-thriller that we all know. I can't wait to get started."
Meanwhile, one can't help but tease him on to comment on the 'failure' of Lafangey Parindey, as the report had suggested. After all, the fact remains that not just has the moderately budgeted Lafangey Parindey managed to sail through smoothly theatrically, it has also made profits for everyone involved, what with other revenues (satellite, music, home video, overseas) also being milked to an optimum.
"My only suggestion to those who comment on box office is, don't get involved when you don't understand the economics of filmmaking. Yash Raj Films are happy and this is where the buck stops", is all that Neil is willing to comment here, considering the fact that folks associated with Yash Raj Films are known for keeping mum when it comes to business matters.