Katrina Kaif (REUTERS)
Katrina KaifREUTERS

The long hunt for the leading lady in Shah Rukh Khan starrer "Happy New Year" came to end after director Farah Khan roped in Deepika Padukone for the flick.

Reports of Deepika being finalised for the female lead comes soon after rumours were doing rounds that Shah Rukh will once again share screen space with his "Jab Tak Hai Jaan" co-star Katrina Kaif in the upcoming film. Recent reports suggest that Katrina turned down "Happy New Year" due to a clash in her shooting schedule.

"She would have loved to do Farah's film. But we believe Farah initially wanted to sign a completely new girl for Happy New Year. She zeroed in on Katrina recently when Katrina had already said yes to other projects. Katrina and Farah are very fond of another ever since they worked together in Tees Maar Khan," a friend of Katrina was quoted as saying by Bollywood Hungama.

Katrina had shown interested in the film but the offer came to her after she gave her consent to work with Kabir Khan and Abhishek Kapoor in their respective projects.

To be in Farah's next and that too with Shah Rukh with whom Katrina really hit off during Jab Tak Hai Jaan, would have been fab. However, as much as Katrina would like to do Happy New Year, she cannot as she is committed to finishing Vijay Krishna Acharya's Dhoom 3 and Siddharth Anand's Bang Bang before going into Abhishek Kapoor's film with Sushant and Kabir Khan's film with Saif," the friend added.

Although not much has been revealed about "Happy New Year", rumour has it that the flick is about four friends for which Farah has signed Abhishek Bachchan, Boman Irani and Naseeruddin Shah's son Vivaan Shah. It was also said that Shah Rukh might play the role of a psycho lover in the film.

"Happy New Year", which would be Shah Rukh and Deepika's third film together after "Om Shanti Om" and  "Chennai Express",  was expected to go on floors in July, but the film's makers postponed the shooting on account of Shah Rukh's surgery for a shoulder injury he had sustained on the sets of "Chennai Express".