A screen pair that was never meant to be

Amitabh BachchanWith Amitabh Bachchan opting out of Somanath Sen's comedy project about a scientist and a musician it looks like Bachchan and Madhuri Dixit are a screen pair that was never meant to be.
It seemed director Somnath Sen of "Leela" fame was finally going to get the pair together, but Bachchan opted out and it isn't because of
a fall out with UTV as reported in a section of the press.

Bachchan, who's currently in Mauritius shooting for his good friend Romesh Sharma's launch vehicle for his son, said: "I decided not to do Somnath Sen's purely because the project didn't enthuse me after a point."

Years ago, J.P. Dutta had launched a film called "Bandhua", with the two in the lead. The film never went beyond the launch.

More recently, Rituparno Ghosh tried to bring the prized pair together for a Hindi film that he plans to make early next year. That too passed.

And now, the opportunity presented by Somnath Sen's film too has fizzled out.

"When the director came to me initially with the idea it sounded okay. But after I saw the script the plot didn't excite me any longer. I'm sure it can be made into a very entertaining film with another actor. But it isn't for me.

"And it has nothing to do with the producer. Agreed, earlier the project was being produced by someone else. Then it went to UTV. But I certainly have no differences with Ronnie Screwalla (the head honcho of UTV). In fact he called up to ask if my opting out of Somnath Sen's film had anything to do with UTV being the producers.

"Ronnie and I are collaborating on several film-related projects, and I'm sure I'll be working in a UTV film very soon."

Why is there an unnecessary need to put me into controversies? I'm barely out of one (his alleged feud with the Gandhi family) when I find myself in another. Please, I've had more than my fill of controversies. Now can I have some peace?

"Ronnie Screwalla is a friend. Just because I'm not doing one film produced by him, how does it follow that I've had a fall out with the company?"

Bachchan returns to Mumbai for Diwali, just in time for the release of Yash Chopra's "Veer-Zaara" where he makes a guest appearance.

"I have a walk-on part. I add nothing to the plot," he confesses. "But being part of Yash Chopra's cinema is reason enough to do anything he asks me to."