Ali Abbas Zafar’s film Bharat has been in the news ever since it was announced. The period drama stars Salman Khan, Katrina Kaif, Disha Patani, Sunil Grover, Tabu, Jackie Shroff and Aasif Sheikh. The film was supposed to be the comeback of Priyanka Chopra but after her exit due to her engagement with Nick Jonas the film fell into Zafar and Salma’s trusted co-star Katrina. Although Zafar announced Priyanka’s exit due to personal reasons, there were other conjectures and rumours that he refrained from addressing. There were rumours that Salman was upset with Priyanka and in turn with Zafar who had stuck his neck out to cast the Quantico actress. However, rubbishing all such speculations the director said that his relationship with Salman is like that of a younger brother.
In an interview given to a leading daily, Zafar spoke about all the conjectures and speculations floating around and said, “People will only talk about such a film because they know that it will snowball into a big story. A lot is being written about Bharat, even the fact that I shot a song with twenty dancers or five hundred dancers becomes news. I guess when a lead actress moves on from a film because of professional or personal reasons; it makes for a big story. This is my third film with Salman and my relationship with him is like that of a younger brother. He has always let me take my own decisions when it comes to casting.”
He further told the daily, “I share my thoughts with him (Salman) because of the sheer experience that he comes with. I cross-check things with him. In fact, I do it with other actors as well. I will hear what he says, but the final call is always mine. I don’t think we are so shallow that we will be angry with someone or term that unprofessional. When people don’t know about the real story, they tend to interpret it in their own way. The decisions taken were solely mine. All the stories that have been doing the rounds are completely baseless. There is no bad blood between any of us.”
Priyanka’s exit from the film sent the entire industry buzzing with stories but Salman’s father Salim Khan had reportedly said that the actor is not upset with the actress because these things keep happening. Moreover, although Salman did not attend Priyanka’s engagement bash with Nick Jonas on Saturday but his sister and PeeCee’s BFF Arpita Khan along with her husband and actor Aayush Sharma were in attendance, once again quashing any bad blood between the actors.