The buzz doing the rounds in the industry is that Salman Khan is very close to the organizers Wizcraft and hence they wanted to cash in on his popularity among NRI population in the US and other countries. But Aishwarya Rai, who was also present in the discussion with Big B, felt that there would be practical difficulties for her in performing on stage if Sallubhai were to be present during the show and so put her foot down on the matter.
In fact, Big B has made the whole issue of the World tour ‘The Unforgettables’ as a prestige issue and is leaving no stone unturned to make it a huge success. Big B has approached every big star of bollywood to include his or her name in the list of performers. While some like Akshay Kumar, Madhuri Dixit, Riteish Deshmukh etc have responded positively, others like Lara Dutta Ranbir Kapoor, Preity Zinta refused due to various reasons.
Big B has even approached Saif Ali Khan, whose stock and fan following rose considerably after the huge box office success of ‘Race’ and his hot romantic escapades with Kareena Kapoor. But Saif Ali Khan is yet to take a final decision and negotiations are still going on.
Another name, which prominently figured in the list of organizers and Big B, was that of Shahid Kapur, who has become a hot property after the success of ‘Jab We Met’. But he too has not taken the final decision and is expected to make his mind soon. If Shahid and Saif agree to perform for the Bachchans’ ‘The Unforgettables’, it will be a sort of coup on the part of organizers as Saif had in past avoided performing with Shahid Kapur (ex boyfriend of Kareena
Salman Khan is peeved at his exclusion as he shares an excellent working relationship with Amitabh Bachchan and the two bonds well even off the screen. But Big B does not want to hurt the sentiments of her daughter-in-law and so preferred not to approach Sallubhai despite of his being a bigger star than others being approached by the Bachchan for the tour.
It may be recalled that earlier Hrithik Roshan was also part of the tour but backed out later, ostensibly for date reasons, but insiders say that Hrithik had become too big after the success of his films like ‘Dhoom 2’ and ‘Krrish’ and did not want to be overshadowed by the Bachchans during the show.
After her marriage Aishwarya has become very selective about her films and her actions, few months back she declined to play the female lead in Karan Johar's Dostana because the film features a love triangle that would have required her to share her affections for Abhishek with John Abraham.
"Now that Abhishek and I are married the kind of quirky situations shown in Dostana, albeit in a comic vein, wouldn't have worked," Aishwarya said in an interview after refusing the film. Aishwarya says she is comfortable doing a film that features a straightforward romance with an actor other than Abhishek, like Jodhaa
However, she will not have anyone compete for her affection with Abhishek on screen. "Now the audience can't see me sharing my affections for Abhishek with another guy," she says. The 34-year-old former Miss India sounded slightly miffed at Karan Johar for putting her in a predicament with the story line in Dostana, and forcing her to withdraw from the film. "Karan Johar wasn't bothered with all these personal considerations. But I felt otherwise. I thought the audience would wonder, 'She likes John and Abhishek equally? No way!’” she says