'Rang De Basanti' may release mid-December...

By Manissha Despaande, IANS

imageMumbai, Sep 17 (IANS) Fans of actor Aamir Khan, who waited four years to catch a glimpse of him in "Mangal Pandey - The Rising", may see his next film "Rang De Basanti" this year itself.

The buzz is that UTV has tentatively confirmed Dec 16 as release date of the Rs.300 million film, reports Bollywood Trade.

"It is true that Dec 16 is one of the release dates being considered for the film, but we are yet to get a confirmation on this," said Sanjeev Mehta, vice-president (distribution) of UTV Pictures.

Aamir had stated in an interview that he would now have a release every eight months with "Rang De Basanti" followed by Yash Raj Enterprises' "Fanaah" directed by Kunal Kohli, which is scheduled to begin shooting in October and will be released next year.

The "Rang De Basanti" cast includes Soha Ali Khan, Alice Payton, Sharman Joshi, Madhavan, Atul Kulkarni, Om Puri and Waheeda Rehman.

Aamir sports a clean-shaven look in the film, completely different from the handlebar moustache and cascading tresses that defined his personality in "Mangal Pandey".

Designers reportedly experimented for nine months before they arrived at the longish haircut and clean-cut new look for Aamir.

UTV is also all set to start the shooting of its next film with Aamir, "Mr Mehta and Mrs Singh", in July 2006, soon after he finishes the shooting of "Fanaah".

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Amisha excited about 'Aakhir'

After the success of "Mangal Pandey - The Rising", actress Amisha Patel is excited about her role in "Aakhir", to be directed by Vikram Bhatt and produced by PNC films, reports Bollywood Trade.

Rumoured to be based on Bhatt and Sushmita Sen's real life story, Amisha essays the role of his wife in the film. Esha Deol plays Sushmita and Aftab Shivdasani is Bhatt.

However, Amisha and Bhatt deny that the film is based on Bhatt's life.

She said: "When Vikram narrated the script to me, I loved the character and I immediately agreed to be a part of this project. I've got a lot of calls from the media asking me the same question about 'Aakhir' being based on Vikram's life. But I think that's not an issue at all.

"I admire Vikram as a director and beyond that don't want to get bogged down by controversies. I hope this puts end to all speculation."