New Delhi: Actor Sonu Soon was at the centre of attention last week when he announced his exit from Kangana Ranaut's 'Manikarnika: The Queen of Jhansi'. The actor's spokesperson told media persons that Sood's exit from the much-anticipated project reportedly took place due to some scheduling conflict.
Later, Bollywoodlife.com quoted Kangana as saying that Sood left the project as he did not want to work under a female director. And now, Sood has reacted to Kangana's comment while justifying his exit from the project at last minute in an exclusive chat with HT.
The actor told the website that he never had a problem of working under a female director as he has worked with Farah Khan in 'Happy New Year'. "That was not my statement. I never said that I don’t want to work with a female director because I have already done a movie with a female director. I only said I can't be working with two directors on one set," he said.
The 'Dabangg' actor further clarifies his stand and says that in his entire career, he never worked with two directors at a time for a project and he will stick to it. "I will always maintain that stand and in a span of all these years, whatever films I have done, 80-90 movies, I have worked with one director at a time. So that is my stand and I will always stick to it," he said.
Sonu has been replaced by Mohammed Zeeshan Ayyub. In the meantime, after his exit from the film, Kangana is doing major reshoots for 'Manikarnika', which has added Rs 20 crore as additional cost to the total budget.
Last week, Sonu's spokesperson said that the actor, who has also been simultaneously shooting for Rohit Shetty's 'Simmba', asked to reshoot some portions for 'Manikarnika' by Kangana. The 45-year-old actor has been sporting a beard for the Ranveer Singh-starrer, but for 'Manikarnika' he was asked to go clean-shaven. Sonu asked the makers of the biopic to finish the reshoots after he completes his schedule for 'Simmba' but things did not work out and he decided to quit the project.
"Sonu has always been a thorough professional and honoured all his commitments. He had informed the makers of Manikarnika about his dates and schedule well in advance. Inconveniencing the team of his current film to accommodate the demands of another are against his professional principles. Sonu has taken the higher road ahead and wishes the team of Manikarnika all the best," the spokesperson said in a statement.
On the other hand, Kangana, in a statement to Pinkvilla last week, had said, "Sonu and I haven't even met since the last shot with Krish (director) last year. He is busy filming 'Simmba'. He couldn't even give us tentative dates to match combinations with other actors. The producers showed him the film and writers narrated the patchwork to him...he refused to meet me. He vehemently denied to work under a woman director, which is kind of amusing because Sonu is a dear friend and I have even launched the music of a film that he produced on his request, even though the team suggested that they have full faith in me, it seems, Sonu had neither dates nor faith."
Earlier, there were reports that filmmaker Krish Jagarlamudi, who has directed the historical drama, has left the project. The news surfaced online after a picture of a clapboard featuring Kangana's name as the director of the film went viral. This set social media on fire with a discussion on whether the actress herself has directed the entire project.
However, it was later clarified by the national award-winning actor's team that she was just shooting the patchwork in absence of Krish, who is currently busy fulfilling his commitments for another project.