Not many are aware that Saif Ali Khan was the original choice for the principal lead in UTV’s DHAN DHANA DHAN GOAL, directed by Vivek Agnihotri. In fact, not only did Vivek keep Saif in mind while writing the script, the actor was all charged to do the film when he heard the script.
But there was a hitch -- Vivek wanted Saif to undergo a three-month training in soccer in U.K. to enact the character with conviction. And Saif didn’t have dates to spare. “He was ready to allot two months at a stretch for shooting in U.K., but not additional three months for training, since that would’ve thrown the schedule of his other films out of gear. That’s when we decided to part ways,” Vivek reminisces. It was then that the makers approached John Abraham for the role in question, since John is a soccer fan in real life.
Meanwhile, talk is rife that GOAL has gone over-budget. “That isn’t anyone’s concern. Has a law been passed in parliament that the budget of a film shouldn’t exceed an ‘x’ amount? If the producers [UTV] and I feel we need to spend more, we will. These talks make no sense in today’s times, when people are giving their all to make international-level films,” Vivek shoots back. Point noted!