Milan Luthria (who last directed Hattrick) is busy with the pre-production of his next film titled Once Upon A Time In Mumbai. For this film, that deals with the origin of the Mafia scene in Mumbai (during the 70's& 80's), Milan has signed Ajay Devgan to play the main lead. Rumors have it that Ajay's character is loosely based on notorious don Haji Mastan who ruled the crime syndicate in Mumbai during that era.
However, when Bollywood Hungama called up Milan, he did confirm having signed Ajay for the film but dispelled any notions of his character being based on Haji Mastan. "Ajay is doing my film Once Upon A Time In Mumbai but it would be wrong to say that his character is based on the notorious gangster Haji Mastan. There is a lot of media speculation going on but there is no truth to it. My film basically talks of how the Mafia came into force for the first time in Mumbai. It's a fast paced action thriller which depicts the crime scenario in Mumbai during the 70's and 80's. We have done research in finding out who were the people who ruled the crime syndicate, how did they operate, what was their code of conduct etc. at that time in Mumbai. But let me make it clear that our film is a totally fictional account and is not based on anybody's life."
So who else stars in the film apart from Ajay Devgan? "We are yet to finalize the other actors. There are 3 female leads also but we are still in the process of developing each character before we can go ahead with the complete casting. As for Ajay, he is the best in this genre and hasn't done a film like this in a while. I needed somebody with controlled intensity. Besides Ajay and I have done 2 films together (Chori Chori and Kachche Dhaage). We share a good comfort level. In my last couple of films, I didn't have a suitable role for him. But this time when the opportunity came by, I approached him and am glad that we are working together once again," says the talented filmmaker.
The film is produced by Balaji Motion Pictures along with Popcorn Entertainment and goes on floors in May 2009. Major portions of the film will be shot in Mumbai while some important scenes will be filmed in Vishakhapatnam, Dubai and Bangkok