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Are Female Actors Easily Interchangeable in Bollywood Film Franchises?

Are Female Actors Easily Interchangeable in Bollywood Film Franchises?

Here are seven actresses who were dropped or replaced from popular film franchises while their male counterparts continued to be part of them.

A movie sequel isn’t an automatic guarantee that the audiences will witness the same actor they saw in the first film, especially if it’s a female actor. More often than not, female actors who star in the first entry in a film series are dropped.

In 2019, actor Varun Dhawan had said that Shraddha Kapoor was “upset” when she wasn’t originally offered Street Dancer 3D, which was planned as a sequel to Disney’s ABCD 2 (2015) but the film was taken off the title due to Disney’s exit from Indian film production. Earlier, Katrina Kaif was supposed to star in Street Dancer 3D but she left the project due to dates unavailability. Varun and Shraddha co-starred in ABCD 2.

Now, if a recent Filmfare report is to be believed then Sara Ali Khan is set to replace Shraddha in Baaghi 4. While Tiger Shroff has been retained as its male lead.

However, this isn’t the first time that a female actor has been replaced in a role, either because they decided not to sign up for further movies due to scheduling conflict or because they weren’t asked to reprise their role.


Here are seven actresses who were dropped from popular film franchises while their male counterparts continued to be part of them:

Lara Dutta

Lara Dutta starred opposite Riteish Deshmukh in Sajid Nadiadwala’s Housefull (2010). In the film, Lara plays the role of Riteish’s wife Hetal Rao, who works at a casino in London with him. Lara had a substantial role in the film but was subsequently dropped from other Housefull films while Riteish went on to appear in Housefull 2, 3 and 4.

Deepika Padukone

She was cast alongside Akshay Kumar in Housefull, wherein she played the role of a Telugu girl Sandy who fell in love with Akshay’s character of Aarush Avasthi. Deepika and Akshay’s chemistry was loved by the audience as the film became one of the biggest hits of 2010. However, when Housefull 2 came along in 2012, Deepika was nowhere to be seen.

Kareena Kapoor Khan

She delivered memorable performances in Rohit Shetty’s Golmaal Returns (2008) and Golmaal 3 (2010). She was cast as Ajay Devgn’s wife Ekta Gill in Golmaal Returns, while Golmaal 3 saw her play the role of Ajay’s business partner Daboo, who co-owns a water sports stall at a beach. But she was replaced by Parineeti Chopra in Golmaal Again (2017). When Rohit Shetty was asked about approaching Kareena for the fourth installment, the director had said that he was willing to cast her but was helpless due to her pregnancy. Kareena delivered her first child Taimur Ali Khan in December 2016. Reacting to Rohit’s statement, Kareena had told reporters at the time, “Those who have a role for me they will come to me. Pregnant or not. I don’t think there is anything wrong in that. Why should he be scared? I should be scared of him.”

Shraddha Kapoor

No one can forget Shraddha Kapoor’s popular dance number ‘Cham Cham’ from Baaghi (2016). The actress shared a great on-screen chemistry with Tiger Shroff as his love interest Sia Khurana in the film which was a remake of 2004 Telugu film Varsham. But Shraddha was replaced by Disha Patani in Baaghi 2. The Saaho star, however, returned to the action film franchise for its third installment which marked her reunion with Tiger. Now it’s being reported that Sara Ali Khan is likely to replace Shraddha in Baaghi 4.

Jacqueline Fernandez

She was an integral part of Housefull series. The actress, who did a special dance number Dhanno in the first Housefull film, went on to star in its second and third parts opposite John Abraham and Akshay Kumar, respectively. But she was dropped from the franchise’s fourth installment, which saw Kriti Sanon, Kriti Kharbanda, and Pooja Hegde as female leads.

Mallika Sherawat

Mallika Sherawat took the audience by storm with her sensuous and bold performance as sexually dissatisfied married woman Simran Sehgal in Mukesh Bhatt’s erotic romantic thriller production ‘Murder’. Her on-screen chemistry with Emraan Hashmi created quite a stir at the box office. But the makers decided to replace her with Jacquline Fernandez in Murder 2, citing that she “tried to hog all the limelight for the success of the Murder 1”.

Kriti Sanon

Kriti Sanon made her Bollywood debut along with Tiger Shroff in the 2014 romantic action film Heropanti, which was a remake of the Telugu film Parugu. The duo delivered a successful film despite being newcomers at the time. The makers are now all set to roll out its sequel with Tiger Shroff headlining the project. However, Kriti has been replaced by relatively new actress Tara Sutaria in the film.