That Salman Khan and Aishwarya Rai Bachchan were Sanjay Leela Bhansali’s first choices for ‘Bajirao Mastani’, is not any secret. The director initially had plans to make the film in the early 2000s after his super successful ‘Hum Dil De Chuke Sanam’ but had to shelve the film after the couple’s highly-controversial and public breakup, reported DNA.
The project, however, finally fleshed out with Priyanka Chopra, Deepika Padukone and Ranveer Singh twelve years later in 2015.
He later went on to work with Aishwarya in ‘Devdas’ and ‘Guzaarish’ but his dream of casting her in a period film remained unfulfilled. Apparently, Bhansali had approached Aishwarya for ‘Padmaavat’ aswell but that couldn’t come through because the director was still reportedly insistent on casting Salman Khan.
While Sanjay and Salman have confirmed the reports at various occasions, we never got to hear Aishwarya’s side of the story.However, during the promotions of her latest film ‘Fanney Khan’ the actress revealed that although the films were offered to her, the director failed to cast a suitable male actor opposite her.
“Bajirao Mastani also we were supposed to do together. He didn’t get the Bajirao for me. He didn’t get the Khilji for me; He wanted me to do Padmaavat, but could not get the Khilji for me, at the casting time. So, that’s how it didn’t happen. I would love to work together.” she told Spotboye.
“The person he saw to play Khilji with me playing Padmaavati did not happen. So, at the end of the day, you need to see the casting. If the casting is not happening, then sometimes, it doesn’t come together. The intention is always there to work together, but it didn’t happen. We both loved working with each other, so let’s see, whenever it is meant to be,” the actress added.
‘Padmaavat’ featured Deepika Padukone, Shahid Kapoor and Ranveer Singh in the lead and went on to become one of the highest grossers of 2018. While Aishwarya would love to team up with her ‘Devdas’ director in future, Salman is already in talks with him.