'Priyanka Chopra called Ali Abbas Zafar, asking for Bharat'
To beat the heat in Goa, Salman Khan swapped his shirt for a white vest. That is not to imply that the superstar compromised on his style at the launch of Bigg Boss 12; what he lacked in the sartorial department, he made up for by his grand entry - Khan arrived at the event in a motor boat amid cheers from his fans.
As he sat down for a chat with mid-day, we addressed the inevitable: Priyanka Chopra's abrupt exit from his period drama, Bharat. "It was sweet of her to tell us five days before the shoot that she couldn't do Bharat," began Khan, indicating that it was not just his muscles on display, but his dry humour too. "I'm glad Katrina is part of the film. She was Atul's [Agnihotri, producer] first choice. But Priyanka called Ali [Abbas Zafar, director] and said she wanted to do Bharat, so we considered her."
While it was initially believed that Chopra walked out of the film to get engaged to boyfriend Nick Jonas, it was later learnt that she had chosen Cowboy Ninja Viking opposite Chris Pratt over the Khan starrer. However, days later, the makers announced that the Hollywood project was infinitely delayed. Khan, on his part, says, "I hope the other movie that she has signed, works out. Now that she is engaged, we are happy for her. I hope she gets married soon, has children and lives happily ever after."
Before he begins the next schedule of Bharat, Khan will honour his small screen commitment. Having been the face of nine of the 12 seasons of Bigg Boss, he insists that hosting the show is no mean feat. "I don't know why certain contestants behave the way they do. Maybe it's because of the environment. I think the Bigg Boss house is the most difficult place to be in. And I am somebody who has even been to jail."
He also realises that many seek to boost their career through the show, "Some people get into the house to get work. But how will anyone hire them for a job, if they behave in an unruly manner in the house?"