'The heroine's role could have been done by any Telugu actress.'
On Karan Johar's recommendation, Alia Bhatt had been offered the female lead in S S Rajamouli's RRR, his first film after the Baahubali movies.
Alia eagerly grabbed the opportunity to work with one of her 'dream directors' in the hope that her presence in RRR would be justified by an enhanced screen space for her character.
But it looks like Alia, who only plays strong author-backed roles in Hindi cinema, has no more to do than participate in one song and a few dialogues.
"Alia was very keen to work with Rajamouli. The heroine's role could have been done by any Telugu actress. It has no substance," a source in the know tells Subhash K Jha.
"The film is all about the two heroes -- Ramcharan Teja and NTR Jr. If a Bollywood star of Alia's stature came on board, it is only natural that the feminine dynamics would improve for the better," the source adds. "They didn't. Alia is just a prop in RRR."
So much so that Alia may get a 'guest appearance' billing in RRR.
Alia, who learnt Telugu for her role in RRR, is unfazed by the length of her role.
"When I came into the movies I had two names on my directors's wishlist Sanjay Leela Bhansali and S S Rajamouli. I am working with both. What more could I ask for?"