After Ashutosh Gowariker, another Rahman loyalist in Bollywood has had to reluctantly switch to another composer. Rakeysh Omprakash Mehra who worked wonders out of Rahman in Rang De Basanti and Delhi 6 and had resolved never to work with another composer, was compelled to look towards Shankar- Ehsaan-Loy for the music of his new project Bhaag Milkha Bhaag (BMB).
"And with good reason," informs a source close to the project. "Mehra was adamant on pulling off a hat trick with Rahman. He waited for months for Rahman to accommodate BMB into his schedule. And Rahman, to his credit, tried his best. It was especially important that Rahman do BMB because of the composer's impressive record with bio-pics Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose, The Legend Of Bhagat Singh, Mangal Pandey, Elizabeth. But his impossible schedules and constant travel into three continents left Rahman with little choice."
It was with a heavy heart that Rahman informed Mehra that he couldn't do BMB. That's when Mehra's 'Milkha' Farhan Akhtar stepped into the picture.
Farhan, a close friend of the Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy team, has employed the trio's considerable talent in all his home production from Dil Chahta Hai to Rock On to Zindagi Na Milegi Dobara. It was Farhan who suggested Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy as a worthy replacement for Rahman.
Outwardly Mehra seems happy enough with the change. Says the charged director, "I've been very keen to work with Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy for many years. We go back almost 20 years. Ehsaan had composed music for my first ad film. Loy and I know each other from my student days in Delhi. Shankar's first music score for an ad film was for me. They've already composed 4 songs for Milkha. Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy are going to sweep all the awards and win a million hearts with this score."
As for Rahman, Mehra refuses to comment on his quiet exeunt from Bhaag Milkha Bhaag.
Earlier it was Ashutosh Gowariker who after getting resonant music in Lagaan, Swades and Jodhaa Akbar from Rahman had to switch to a new composer Sohail Sen in What's Your Raashee and Khelein Hum Jee Jaan Se, both resounding flops.
Rakeysh Mehra is trying his best to re-focus on the altered musical state in his creative ambit.
The film begins shooting at the end of February and will be completed in July.