Exclusive: Suniel Shetty roped in for Awara Pagal Deewana sequel

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Firoz Nadiadwala knows the show must go on and hence the filmmaker who was mentally broken after the demise of his very good friend Neeraj Vora last December, is slowly and steadily returning to the work. And the first project that he has materialized successfully is the one he and Vora were planning for years. Hera Pheri 3, the third installment to the cult franchise Hera Pheri will be the first film to go on floors under his banner in last three years (the last was Welcome Back in 2015).

The original magical lead pair — Akshay Kumar, Paresh Rawal and Suniel Shetty have come on board with Indra Kumar helming it this time. The film will roll by the end of this year and is expected to hit cinemas sometime next year. However, Hera Pheri 3 is not the only film Firoz Nadiadwala is making. Besides it, there are several other projects as well in the making which will be announced later.

RECOMMENDED READ: HERA PHERI 3: AKSHAY KUMAR, SUNIEL SHETTY AND PARESH RAWAL-STARRER TO RELEASE IN 2019

And one of them, we have learnt, is the sequel to Awara Pagal Deewana. The film which was the desi version of Hollywood flick The Whole Nine Yards and starred Akshay Kumar, Suniel Shetty, Paresh Rawal, Aftab Shivdasani and Johnny Lever in leads, was a huge blockbuster when it released in 2002. Although the sequel to this action-comedy has been in news for last two years it never took off due to various reasons. There were also rumours that the film was scrapped last year but we have been informed that the film is definitely happening.

"Firoz sir is planning a grand sequel to Awara Pagal Deewana. It will be an original story, unlike the first part which was based on a Hollywood film. The scripting is currently going on and will be completed by this year-end. It will be the next film that Firoz sir will dive into right after Hera Pheri 3 is completed. They are planning to roll it in the second half of 2019," a source close to Nadiadwala informed us. Ahmed Khan will likely helm this film.

Regarding the casting, we have learnt that Suneil Shetty has been roped in for the film. He will be reprising his character of Yeda Anna from the original. "He was the first to hear the concept of this sequel and immediately agreed to be a part of it.'' the source added.

However, there is no clarity on other actors as yet. "Talks are still on with Akshay and Paresh Rawal sir. While there is a chance of Rawal sir coming on board, Akshay might not do this film as he doesn't want to do three back-to-back comedy movies," the source further said. There was also a rumour that John Abraham might step into Akshay's shoes but when we contacted his spokesperson denied the news.

"Firoz Nadiadwala was working on Hera Pheri 3, Awara Pagal Deewana 2, Bhagam Bhag and few more films for last several years but things weren't working sometimes due to the script issues while most of the time due to actor's date issues. It's not easy to do a multi-heroes film as you never know when all the main actors will have free time to shoot together. But this time, by God grace, everything fell into place and Akshay, Suniel and Paresh sir all accommodated their dates and see, we are rolling Hera Pheri 3 this year itself and Awara Pagal Deewana 2 mid-next year," the source concluded.

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