Ajay Devgn issues statement defending Alok Nath's presence in De De Pyaar De, cites budget issues
Ajay Devgn's De De Pyaar De has found itself amid a controversy. Actor Alok Nath, accused of sexually assaulting writer-producer Vinta Nanda nearly two decades ago, is a part of the film. This has irked Vinta as well as actor Tanushree Dutta who initiated the #MeToo movement in Bollywood. After being slammed by both of them, Ajay has now released a statement, explaining his stand and stating why dropping Alok Nath wasn't an option for the makers.
"This film was supposed to be an October 2018 release. The shoot of the film got over by last September. The portions with Mr. Alok Nath were canned by August in Manali. The said portions were shot over 40 days across various sets and an outdoor location with a combination of over 10 actors. By the time the allegations came out (in October 2018) the actors in the film including me had already started work on other films. It would be near impossible to get all the dates and combinations of several actors in the film and attempt a re-shoot with some other actor replacing Mr Nath. It would also have been a huge monetary loss for the producers," his statement reads.
View this post on Instagram
Ajay also emphasised that replacing Alok Nath was not a decision he could take singlehandedly. Apart from an increased budget, this would also mean bringing all the actors together for a reshoot.
"Everyone is aware that filmmaking is a collaborative process. The decision to replace Mr Alok Nath could never have been mine alone. In this case, I would have to go with the joint decision of the entire unit. Not to forget, I could not have brought the entire combination of actors back or put up sets again for a 40-day re-shoot because this would mean doubling the budget, which again wasn’t my call to make," the statement added.
Directed by Akiv Ali and starring Tabu, Rakul Preet and Jaaved Jaffery in pivotal roles, the film is set to release on 17th May 2019.