Finally Ranbir got Ahmed’s coveted dates while Shahid to whom Ahmed Khan was committed had to shoot two of his songs with a choreographer Chinni Prakash, leaving the situation rather helplessly unsavory for all the three parties concerned.
Says a source, “It was a very peculiar situation with both Shahid and Ranbir equally adamant on getting Ahmed on board, almost like those T. Rama Rao melodramatic triangles in the 1980s where two heroines would fight over who got Jeetendra. Though ultimately Ranbir bagged Ahmed, the choreographer was very unhappy about letting his childhood friend down. You see, Ahmed and Shahid go back a long way. They’ve known each other from childhood. When Ahmed turned producer with Paathshaala, Shahid was an integral part of the project. Letting Shahid down has left Ahmed feeling very unhappy.”
To rewind a bit, Ahmed has been the regular choreographer for both the Kapoor star-kids. He was slated to choreograph two songs for Shahid in Kunal Kohli’s untitled film when suddenly Ranbir Kapoor decided he wanted Ahmed to be a part of the short feature-film that Ranbir directed for a brand of automobile that he endorses (Nissan).
Apparently, Ahmed was in two minds. But Ranbir insisted that Ahmed shouldn’t let go of an opportunity to explore a new area of creativity.
Says the source, “Ahmed was really torn between the two actors. On the one end, Ranbir’s short film was path breaking. On the other end, Ahmed was committed to shoot two songs with Shahid. Ahmed reluctantly opted out of his commitment to Shahid.”
Wondering whether his priority selection had affected not only his relationship with Shahid but also the recent friendship between Shahid and Ranbir, one questioned Ahmed on the matter.
Ahmed didn’t deny the dilemma. “It is true I had to opt out two songs with Shahid for Kunal Kohli’s film to do the short film with Ranbir. But there was no other way out. Ranbir’s film is a totally new experience. He has narrated an entire love story in 4 minutes. We had to use a 100 Nissan cars, arrange expert drivers from Bangalore and Mumbaiâ€¦It was an entirely new experience. In fact Shahid was most co-operative. He advised me to go for the Ranbir project. I felt sorry to see Shahid do the two songs with Chinni Prakashji whom Shahid had never worked with before. But this film with Ranbir was a completely new opportunity for me. I couldn’t let go of it.”
Ahmed insists the last-minute opting out has not affected his long-standing friendship with Shahid. “In fact I am choreographing another number with Shahid for Kunal Kohli’s film. There are no hard feelings between me and Shahid.”
In the same breath Ahmed proclaims, he’s taking a long sabbatical from choreography. “I’ve been at it since I was 19. I need a break to spend time with my children.”
Could Ahmed’s decision to avoid dancing have something to do with the Ranbir-Shahid deadlock?