With Aap Ki Khatir nearing completion (it stars Akshaye Khanna, Sunil Shetty, Dino Morea, Ameesha Patel and Priyanka Chopra), Dharmesh Darshan is setting the base for his next film, with Akshay Kumar in the lead.
As for the female lead, the producers, Taurani brothers Kumar and Ramesh, and even Darshan, want Aishwarya Rai. Darshan has already had a long story-telling session with Ash; the director met the actress last month.
When contacted, Darshan confirmed that he is doing the film with Akshay in the lead. "For further details, I want you to talk to Ramesh Taurani. I have signed a contract with Tips, which says that I cannot reveal anything more than this, at this stage at least," he said.Ash in Brazil
The Tauranis were unavailable for comment, but Ash's manager Hari Singh confirmed, "We have been told that Akshay plays the lead. Aishwarya met Darshan about a month-and-a-half back, in this regard.
She loved the story and her role immensely. Right now, Aishwarya is in Brazil shooting for Dhoom 2.
From April till June, she will concentrate on Mani Ratnam's film (co-starring Abhishek Bachchan and Vidya Balan) at a stretch.
If all goes well, it could be Darshan's film next. We still have to work out on the dates and other formalities. After she is back from Brazil, the picture will be clear."
"I have just completed a major schedule in London and returned only yesterday. The film is now 80 per cent complete," said Darshan. "I am targetting it for a June or July release. I will start the Tips film only after I am through with Aap Ki Khatir."
Earlier, Lara Dutta had been asked to do Aap Ki Khatir, but backed out, citing date problems. The Tips film will be Darshan's fourth with Akshay, after Dhadkan (2000), Haan... Maine Bhi Pyaar Kiya (2002) and Bewafaa (2005)