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Vidya Balan, Nithya Menen, Sonakshi Sinha join Akshay Kumar in Mission Mangal

The film will also feature Taapsee Pannu, Sharman Joshi and Kirti Kulhari in pivotal roles. 

Shriram Iyengar

Akshay Kumar's mission to Mars has already taken off with an addition to the cast. After the announcement of the actor's 3-film deal with Fox Star Studios, the makers introduced the cast of the film, Mission Mangal. The introduction was made by Akshay who posed alongside Vidya Balan, Sharman Joshi, Taapsee Pannu, Sonakshi Sinha, Nithya Menen and Kirti Kulhari in the picture. 

Jointly produced by Fox Star Studios and The Cape of Good Films, Mission Mangal's cast announcement comes on the 5th anniversary of the launch of India's Mangalyaan space satellite. 

The film will mark the directorial debut of Jagan Shakti, who has been assistant and associate director on several projects like Cheeni Kum (2007), English Vinglish (2012), Thuppakki (2012), Holiday: A Soldier Is Never Off Duty (2014), Shamitabh (2015), Akira (2016) and Padman (2018). 

In his official statement about the announcement of the film, Akshay said, "I am delighted to find a new creative partner in Fox Star Studios and am looking forward to creating a collaboration that will deliver a meaningful and entertaining cinematic experience. With our combined energies we hope to create content that not only excites but also empowers." 

This will be the third film about India's journey into space in the making. R Madhavan's The Nambi Effect, the upcoming Shah Rukh Khan-starrer Saare Jahaan Se Accha are also based around India's space explorations. The trailer to Aanand L Rai's Zero, also featuring Shah Rukh Khan, has an element of space travel involved.