Sushant Singh Rajput was supposed to play the lead in Robbie Grewal’s Romeo Akbar Walter (RAW) early last year. However, the actor opted out of the project ans numerous names started doing the rounds. In March 2018, the makers made an official announcement stating that John Abraham had replaced Sushant as the protagonist in the espionage spy thriller. However, now we hear that he too won’t be doing the film. DNA quoted a source as saying that John allegedly felt RAW’s storyline to be a lot like Alia Bhatt‘s Raazi.
” When he watched the trailer of Meghna Gulzar’s film, which released a few days ago, he was convinced about it. It’s just that RAW is from a man’s perspective,” the source said. Raazi has been adapted from a book titled Calling Sehmat, authored by Harinder Sikka. In the film, Alia, an Indian girl, marries a Pakistani army officer in order to gather intelligence to provide to the Indian Intelligence team during the Indo-Pak war of 1971 that led to the liberation of Bangladesh. The source further said, “John’s movie is also about an Indian spy who joins the Pakistani armed forces to relay information to the Research & Analysis Wing (RAW). The team wanted to alter the script a bit, but the actor wasn’t convinced as the main storyline would still be the same. Hence, he politely asked the makers to move on.”
However, when the leading daily contacted another source from the production team, a different story was told. This source confirmed that RAW has been indefinitely pushed ahead, however for a different reason. “The makers drew up a rough budget for the actioner and the landing cost, without publicity and promotion, which came up to Rs 40-45 crore. That is a big figure to recover with John in the lead. Moreover, he had also signed the deal for Rs 11 crore as his remuneration. So, the makers have scrapped the idea for now. If they plan to make RAW sometime in the future, they want to do it with a bigger star who can ensure a good return on their investment.” John was unavailable for comment.