It's a known fact that Zoya Akhtar, daughter of Javed Akhtar and Honey Irani and sister of Farhan Akhtar, had been planning to make her directorial debut with NARGIS. It's said that Zoya had penned the script keeping Madhuri Dixit in mind and also had a meeting with the U.S.-settled actress a few weeks ago. The latest on NARGIS is that Madhuri and Zoya have gone separate ways. Reason: The hefty fee the actress demanded was a major deterrent. The story doing the rounds is that Zoya has pencilled on the 'next three options' Aishwarya Rai, Karisma Kapoor and Preity Zinta. Neither Aishwarya nor Karisma have been approached for the role, Zoya informs me, in an exclusive chat, I am in a quandary. Believe me, the project is on hold primarily because we haven't been able to finalise the leading lady. But why did the talks with Madhuri fail, considering that you waited for over a year to get her positive nod? Was it the exorbitant fee she quoted that made you retract? Well, we had creative differences as well. Let me put this on record, she is not being considered for NARGIS anymore, Zoya spells out. What about Preity? Reportedly, the actress, who happens to be a family friend [she's been a part of Farhan's DIL CHAHTA HAI and LAKSHYA and Honey's ARMAAN], had decided to bail out Zoya by allotting bulk dates. True? Well, Preity is a friend, but we haven't discussed the film yet, she avers, But we're in the process of talking to someone Though Zoya is tight-lipped vis-?is the actress she is talking to [to step in Madhuri's shoes], there are rumours that the 'queen' has been approached for the role. Since NARGIS is expected to roll in September/October this year, a clearer picture should emerge in a week or two. We'll keep you posted!
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