Emraan Hashmi-Neha Dhupia starrer Raftaar 24x7 shelved?


Launched with much fanfare exactly two years back with a budget pegged at 25 crores, Raftaar 24x7 was one of those couple of dozen films which came into existence when the industry was at its peak. The term 'recession' had not yet made its presence felt and every reputed production house and actor was more than glad to make huge announcements. There was widespread excitement around the film since a 25 crore budget allocated by Percept Picture Company meant that Raftaar 24x7 was all set to be Emraan Hashmi's biggest venture till date.

All seemed to be quite well during the earlier schedules of the film as first time filmmaker Shamim Desai joined the principal cast of Raftaar 24x7 in Maldives for a 'test shoot'. This was one of its kind experiment as the week-long trip worth Rs. 1.5 crore was planned to get the cast and the crew familiar with each other.

Says an industry observer, "Those were the days when good money was flowing into the industry. Corporate houses did everything to entice actors and create an impression among investors that their film was all set to be a lavish affair. No one could foresee that industry was headed for a doom in the year to follow."

A major schedule of the film was later shot in Delhi where for the first time ever in his career, Emraan Hashmi featured in a guerrilla shoot.

However, there was not much movement after that. As things stand today, both Emraan Hashmi and Neha Dhupia have not just completed multiple films in the interim (Raaz - The Mystery Continues, Tum Mile, De Dana Dan, Raat Gayi Baat Gayi) but also have their date diaries pretty filled up for the rest of the year. Emraan is looking at the release of Once Upon A Time In Mumbai and is also shooting for Crook: It's Good To Be Bad which is likely to release before the close of year. Neha has With Love To Obama and Pappu Can't Dance Saala ready for release and a biggie in the form of Action Replayy lined up next.

"I think mostly the delay in release of Raftaar 24x7 is due to monetary issues and people at the top are trying to sort it out," says Neha hopefully. "I hope that important people feel as good about the film as I do. I truly believe we have something really good in hand."

Well, one looks forward to see whether Percept too shares similar sentiments here.

The production house Percept has been hit hard with back-to-back box office failure of 8x10 Tasveer (Akshay Kumar), Jail (Neil Nitin Mukesh) and Jumbo. Their offbeat films Kancheevaram, Firaaq and Ramchand Pakistani have primarily succeeded in fetching only good reviews. Their recent release Bumm Bumm Bole, despite the association with Priyadarshan, too has been a disaster at the box office and hasn't seen much appreciation critically either. Release plans of John Abraham starrer Aashayein and Nagesh Kukunoor directed Bemisaal are uncertain too. As for their newer films, Malamaal Weekly 2 hasn't moved beyond the announcement stage. While one looks forward to Percept reviving itself and unleashing their lineup of films to favourable results, the current status of Raftaar 24x7 continues to be shrouded in mystery.

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