Actors Ajay Devgn and Emraan Hashmi agreed to take pay cuts to work in the 2010 hit “Once Upon A Time In Mumbaai” owing to the ongoing recession at that time, director Milan Luthria has said.
“Out of the blue, in April that year, a half-page story idea landed in my lap. It was sketchy but engaging, and I signed the film soon after. The recession continued and the budget of the multi-starrer was reviewed many times till it was finally greenlit,” the director recalled.
Luthria wanted Devgn and Hashmi in his film, and took steps to ensure his vision became a reality.
“The recession worsened, and I had to request both Ajay and Emraan to take a small reduction in their fee in exchange for a back end profit share,” he said.
“I agreed on going ahead with this thought only on one condition — that my fee would also be deducted proportionately, otherwise it would be unethical for me to ask the actors for the same,” Luthria said.
The period gangster drama also featured Kangana Ranaut, Randeep Hooda and Prachi Desai in pivotal roles. It was released in India on July 30, 2010.