Rumours were rife that Saif Ali Khan will be playing a lead role in the biopic on Uzma Ahmed who was forced to marry a Pakistani man at gunpoint during her visit to the neighbouring country last year. Filmmaker Shivam Nair who is helming this biopic had revealed in November that he was in talks with Saif to play a major character. However, we have now learned that Saif is not a part of this film.
A source says, "Saif Ali Khan was in talks to play an Indian diplomat who's there in Pakistan. When Uzma Ahmed was inside the Indian Embassy in Pakistan, he was the one helping and taking care of her. Saif was approached to play this major character and he also had shown his interest but then he and the producers couldn't agree to the terms together." The other source revealed that Saif was actually demanding a huge price which the producers felt was much higher than his bankability at the box office.
According to the source, the yet-untitled film has now been postponed indefinitely and won't roll until they get the leading man. Ileana D'Cruz who was supposed to play Uzma Ahmed in the biopic, however, is still a part of the project.
When we tried to contact director Shivam Nair he didn't respond to our text message. However, a source involved in the project told us, "Saif was never made a formal offer. Although the director was keen to sign him it never got to a narration or formal offer stage."
Written by Ritesh Shah and backed by Jatish Varma, the film is expected to be served as a warning signal to those who may get trapped like Uzma.
“Uzma’s journey from Malaysia to Pakistan and then finally to India is an inspirational and courageous journey that delivers a good social message, certainly a story that needs to be told," Shivam Nair had said while announcing the film.
Uzma Ahmed is an India girl, who fell in love with a man named Tahir Ali, of Pakistani nationality. And love, perhaps, was her only crime. She travelled with him to his homeland, only to discover that Ali was married and a father of hour. Thereafter, not only was she subjected to a torment beyond imagination - sexual assault and marriage at gunpoint. Uzma somehow managed to lure Ali into taking her to Indian High Commission where she contacted the Minister of External Affairs, Sushma Swaraj. Twleve days after approaching the Islamabad High Court, Swaraj welcomed home 'Hindustan ki beti.'