Kamal Haasan was offered Akshay Kumar’s role in ‘2.O’, reveals Shankar

The Tamil superstar said he couldn't finalise the role in Shankar's film owing to his complicated business arrangements.

BySouth First Desk

Published Jul 02, 2024 | 4:13 PM Updated Jul 02, 2024 | 4:20 PM

Shankar says he approached Kamal for 2.O

Kamal Haasan, who is basking in the success of Kalki 2898 AD and eagerly awaiting the release of his much-hyped sequel Indian 2, has turned down multiple film offers, including a role in Rajinikanth’s 2.O (2018).

Well, this happened before the blockbuster Vikram (2022)  with Lokesh Kanagaraj materialised.

In a recent interview, director Shankar revealed his initial plan to cast Kamal Haasan alongside the superstar in the sequel to Enthiran (2010).

Shankar’s desire to cast Arnold Schwarzenegger as the main antagonist in the Rajinikanth-starrer is widely known. Despite his eagerness to cast Kamal Haasan as Pakshi Rajan in the film, the actor-politician declined the offer for unknown reasons. Subsequently, Bollywood actor Akshay Kumar took on the role.

Akshay Kumar in 2.O

Akshay Kumar in ‘2.O’. (X)

Shankar mentioned that he was close to sealing the deal with the Hollywood icon. He recalled that even Arnold Schwarzenegger was enthusiastic about the project. But unfortunately, they couldn’t reach an agreement, on all aspects while negotiating the contract.

“Later, I contemplated casting Kamal sir for the role. It was a personal wish of mine to unite Rajini sir and Kamal sir in the same film. Along with Jeyamohan, the dialogue writer for 2.O, I met Kamal sir and discussed the role. However, he was more interested in Indian 2, so we moved on,” Shankar recalled in an interview.

Kamal Haasan confirmed, “Yes, I was offered the villain’s role in 2.O. But due to complicated business arrangements, I couldn’t finalise it. I told Shankar that I prefer to continue playing the hero for a while longer.”

Also Read: Kamal Haasan and Shankar on ‘Indian 2’

Kamal-Rajinikanth’s friendship

Before achieving unprecedented stardom, Rajinikanth, too, played supporting roles in Kamal Haasan’s films. He was then a struggling actor, while Kamal enjoyed success.

Following the 1979 film Ninaithale Inikkum, Kamal Haasan decided to avoid collaborating with Rajinikanth and focus on securing lead roles for himself in films.

Although they were last seen together in the Hindi film Geraftaar (1985), Kamal Haasan revealed that they both decided not to work together again. Despite this, they maintain a strong bond and frequently attend events to support each other’s work.

Kamal spoke about his friendship with Rajinikanth and the possibility of making cameo appearances in each other’s films in the future.

Kamal and Rajinikanth with the late filmmaker K Balachander

Kamal and Rajinikanth with the late filmmaker K Balachander. (X)

He mentioned, “It’s not a new combination. We have collaborated on many films in the past. Later, we made a mutual decision not to work together. We aren’t rivals; we share the same mentor—the late filmmaker K Balachander. Unlike elsewhere, where competition is overt, ours is a different dynamic without envy, as we tread separate paths.”

Kamal Haasan also mentioned, “Another decision we made is to refrain from making disparaging remarks about each other. We made this choice in our 20s; it’s not something we decided upon later in life with more wisdom.”

Kamal Haasan and Rajinikanth were seen together in over a dozen films, including Apoorva Raagangal (1975), Moondru Mudichu (1976), 16 Vayathinile (1977), Avargal (1977), Aval Appadithaan (1978), Ilamai Oonjal Aadukirathu (1978), and Allauddinum Albhutha Vilakkum (1979).

(Edited by Y Krishna Jyothi)

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