"It all happened by accident," informs our source, "One of his close friends had been finalized to play the villain. He was all charged about stepping in to the sets and gets the part rolling. However, due to certain reasons known to him, he suddenly developed cold feet. He informed the makers that he couldn't play that role and requested them to hunt for a replacement instead," informs our source.
For producers John Abraham and Sunir Kheterpal, it was a situation for which they had to find a solution pronto as the dates for cast and technicians were already locked.
"For this unconventional role, we couldn't have settled for a conventional baddie," says Sunir, "Our antagonist had to be menacing, yet in a quiet sort of a way. With due respect to few baddies that we have in the industry today, none of them was truly fitting the bill. We had to think innovative, we had to decide fast, and yet we had to maintain the ethos of Rocky Handsome for the subject and the genre that it carries."
While deliberations were on, there was solution just round the corner as everyone felt that Nishikant himself could be the right man for the role.
"Absolutely," says John, "And we are so glad that he agreed to step into the shoes of an actor for this very important part. He had to show the mean side of this character and since he was so attached to Rocky Handsome right from its inception, he was also the closest to the thought process, mannerisms and body language of the villain. Once he faced the camera, he was just bang on."
"Yes, there was so much pressure on him as the role is very demanding, especially mentally and emotionally," says John, "I can understand where he was coming from. He is so involved during the making of his films and wants to give his all to every job that he does. Here, to do two jobs simultaneously was a lot that he took on his plate."
"One thing that he has vowed now that henceforth he won't direct and act at the same time," chuckles John before signing off.