Bollywood hasn't seen a spilt as acrimonious as Kangana Ranaut and Hrithik Roshan since Aishwarya Rai and Salman Khan. The exes have been the talk of B-Town for some time now for taking very thinly veiled potshots at each other. She called him names in interviews while he would take to Twitter to vent out his anger. Mud-slinging is not new to Bollywood so this didn't really surprise anyone in the industry. Then things took a bizarre turn.
Hrithik sent a legal notice seeking an apology from Kangana for calling him her "silly sex" and she in turn has sent a counter-notice charging him with an attempt to cover up a relationship. It's all more than just a little odd. An affair that until now was just being whispered about has become a headline.
As expected, both parties have different versions of this "relationship". Sources close to Kangana insist that not only did Hrithik pursue her for a long time during and after Krrish 3, he also proposed to her in Paris in 2013. "Kangana was led to believe that she was the one for him. She was hesitant to believe him because it was so soon after his separation from Sussanne but Hrithik was persistent," reveals a source.
On the flipside, sources close to the actor maintain that they were never really a couple. "After his marriage ended, Hrithik was living the bachelor superstar lifestyle. Sparks flew between Kangana and Hrithik during Krrish 3 but they only hooked up after his marriage ended. But it was never serious. And, she wasn't the only actress he made a play for. There were many others, some who reciprocated and others who didn't," says a source close to the superstar.
Photographers covering a high-profile Diwali party a couple of years ago still gossip about the leggy actress Hrithik left that night with.
This is where the story gets a little murky. This wasn't the first break-up for either of them. So, what pushed them towards this bitter public feud? Some believe Kangana was upset that Hrithik didn't support her publically. During the much written about clash with Deepika Padukone last year, Kangana told journalists that there were many who supported her privately on sms and mail but never publically. Another theory doing the rounds is that it was the Aashiqui 3 ouster that really hurt her.
After all, that's when the public name-calling started. At a press conference, Kangana was asked if her ouster from the film had anything to do with their break-up as the rumours suggested. Kangana, in her trademark candor said, "Yes, many lame rumours are doing the rounds, even a dumb-ass can tell where these rumours are coming from. I don't know why exes do silly things to get your attention. For me that chapter is over and I don't dig graves."
The very next day, Hrithik took to Twitter to say, "There are more chances of me having had an affair with the Pope than any of the (I'm sure wonderful) women the media has been naming. Thanks but no thanks." To which, Kangana replied, "It's very likely that two people can have two different perspectives to the same situation."
There is speculation that Hrithik's core team including his life coach advised him to send this absurd legal notice. "They must have hoped that the legal notice would scare Kangana into silence. They didn't expect that it would get leaked to the press. Most of Hrithik's older staff has been taken by surprise with this legal notice," says a source.
In the legal notice, Hrithik's lawyer has accused Kangana of bombarding his client with emails. It also says that he believes that Kangana suffers from Aspergers's Syndrome which made her imagine a relationship that didn't exist. Kangana in her notice counter-claims that it's Hrithik who is imagining things. Both the notices also mention private parties at the homes of both the actors and that Kangana contacted Hrithik's father Rakesh Roshan to get him to intervene.
Both actors are currently not in Mumbai. Kangana is shooting for Vishal Bharadwaj's Rangoon in Arunanchal Pradesh while Hrithik is in Prague shooting a commercial. Late last night, Hrithik tweeted "Strong winds. Walking Tall".
This scandal is snowballing into a storm so rapidly that the actors would need a lot of fortitude to weather it.