Director Sanjay Gupta is the man behind several sleek action films in Bollywood. His rich repertoire of films include popular names such as Aatish, Kaante, Kaabil, Shootout At Lokhandwala, among others. His collaborations with actor Sanjay Dutt, in particular, have been celebrated. Sanjay Gupta's directorial debut Aatish: Feel the Fire  featured Sanjay Dutt in the lead role. However, the collaborations came to a standstill when the director and actor had a fall-out. The director has now spoken about the same in an interview with Siddharth Kannan. When asked what went wrong between them, the filmmaker said: “Nothing went wrong. What went wrong, I think, were the people around us. Some people around us tried to create too many misunderstandings between us. We didn't speak for four years. But in those four years, you may look for it, you will not find a statement by me against Sanjay Dutt and you will not find a statement against me by Sanjay Dutt. Both of us did not open our mouths. The world pitted us against each other but we did not open our mouths. I sat without work for three years. People had stopped taking my calls because there were people calling up people and saying, ‘Sanjay Dutt has asked you not to work with Sanjay Gupta.' Sanjay Dutt never said that.”
He also accused producer Dharam Oberoi of falsely telling people that Sanjay Dutt had asked them not to work with Sanjay Gupta. About Dharam Oberoi, Sanjay Gupta added, “He even became Sanjay Dutt's manager for a short while. He was calling people. So when Sanjay Dutt's manager calls people, they will believe it.” Sanjay Gupta further reiterated that Sanjay Dutt had never tried to rob him off work opportunities. “I remember, I had shut my office down at one point. And I was actually going to give it on rent and I said, ‘Now it is over.' I had started working on a friend's hotel in Lonavala – I was redoing it and planning to run it – because I had to run my house. My wife was pregnant,” the filmmaker shared. He added that it was the birth of his son that pushed him to get back to filmmaking, as he wanted to leave his son “a legacy”.
Sanjay Gupta also added that even during the fall-out he did not allow people to badmouth Sanjay Dutt in front of him. He shared that Sanjay Dutt and he met at Amitabh Bachchan's 70th birthday and the fall-out was forgotten. The filmmaker said that Sanjay Dutt hugged him, and the two cried. Recounting the incident, the filmmaker said, “I am talking to John [Abraham] and I suddenly hear from the back, ‘Hey Gups'... Sanju was walking in and he saw me. He called out to me… He just came and hugged me and we both started crying. It [the fight] was over…” He also hinted that they may work together soon and shared that a script for the sequel to Zinda is in the pipeline.
Similarly, Sanjay Gupta also spoke about his fall-out with actor Vivek Oberoi. Explaining the reason behind the fight, Sanjay Gupta said, “I just felt that Vivek Oberoi at that moment in time had been very ungrateful… We did Shootout at Lokhandwala…and all the actors agreed to be part of Dus Kahaniyaan. Only Vivek said, ‘My career is going in a certain way. I don't think I should do an anthology.' I said, ‘Vivek, you are doing it for me. I have given you a Shootout At Lokhandwala. I have created this character for you.'” Sanjay Gupta added that while he did not force Vivek Oberoi, he decided “to stay away” from the actor. The director also said that they did not work together for a long time.
Sanjay Gupta said that the actor then met him at a party and shared his desire to work with the filmmaker again. Vivek, as per Sanjay Gupta, requested for a narration of Shootout At Wadala amid a Diwali party at the director's home. After hearing the story, he agreed to be a part of the project instantly, the director revealed. Sharing Vivek's reaction, Sanjay Gupta said: “He got up. He had tears in his eyes, he hugged me. He hugged my wife. He said, ‘I have come back home and I am doing this film.”
However, after announcing his association with the project, Vivek Oberoi backed out, citing that he is doing another project, the director revealed. He said, “That is where I lost it. I said that is not right. Don't come to my house, sit with me, hear my narration, congratulate my wife, congratulate me, and say, ‘Ya, let's do this' and then after that you turn around and say, ‘I am not doing it.' The filmmaker also revealed that Vivek Oberoi chose to do Zila Ghaziabad instead.
Listen to the latest songs, only on JioSaavn.com "So, I was upset with him for a brief time,” Sanjay Gupta confessed, adding that there are "no permanent friendships or enmities" in the movie business. Sanjay Gupta also shared that the role Vivek Oberoi was meant to do in Shootout At Wadala was eventually portrayed by Sonu Sood.