Junior NTR in Nannaku Prematho
Junior NTR in Nannaku PremathoTwitter

Director Vamsi Paidipally, who is busy promoting his next venture "Oopiri," has opened up about Junior NTR opting out of the film. The Akkineni Nagarjuna and Karthi starrer is set to hit screens March 25.

Made in Telugu and Tamil, "Oopiri" is an official remake of the French comedy-drama "The Intouchables," which delves into the relationship between a quadriplegic and his live-in caretaker. While Nagarjuna was cast as the quadriplegic, Junior NTR was roped in to essay the role of the latter. Later, the young tiger was replaced with Karthi.

The bosses of PVP Cinema, which has produced "Oopiri," released a press statement in October, confirming the decision of casting actor Suriya's brother Karthi for the role. But they had not revealed the reason for Junior NTR's ouster. The news, which had shocked Junior NTR's fans, had fuelled several speculations. The makers, however, kept mum on the issue at the moment.

Now in a recent interview to 123 Telugu, Paidipally denied dropping Junior NTR from the film. "NTR had serious date issues and had to walk away from the project. The only option left for me was Karthi, and with him agreeing to do the film, we had the opportunity of making the film as a bilingual," Vamsi told 123 Telugu.

However, rumours about Junior NTR working with Nagarjuna started doing the rounds weeks after the release of his film "Temper," which hit the screens Feb. 13, 2015. The actor had earlier signed the film, "Nannaku Prematho" with director Sukumar. The movie was to be released by the end of 2015, but the delay in its shooting was said to have forced him to walk out of "Oopiri."