‘Bajirao Mastani’, one of the most awaited films of the year, opened to packed theaters and political protests. Directed by Sanjay Leela Bhansali, this Indian historical romance movie narrates the story of Maratha warrior, Bajirao and his second wife Mastani. For those who are looking forward to watching the movie, here are some lesser known facts you did not know about the film:
1. Sanjay Leela Bhansali never attempted historic movies before
‘Bajirao Mastani’ is the first Indian historical romance movie directed by Sanjay Leela Bhansali. This movie was a dream project for the director who is known for his perfection. Audiences have been looking forward to seeing the visual grandeur and lavish execution of characters and emotions.
2. It took decades to finalize the cast of the movie
Sanjay Leela Bhansali took over a decade to finalize the cast of ‘Bajirao Mastani’. It was rumored that Bhansali wanted Ajay Devgn to act as Bajirao due to his Maharashtrian background. But Ajay demanded a staggering fee due to which Bhansali had to turn down his offer.
3. Deepika Padukone and Ranveer Singh were not the first actors to be considered
It took ten years for Sanjay Leela Bhansali to finalize the cast of the movie; he wanted to cast Salman Khan and Aishwarya Rai for the lead roles but due to their highly publicized breakup, that pairing was unlikely to happen.
4. Bhansali had Rani Mukherjee and Kareena Kapoor in mind.
He wanted Kareena to play the role of Mastani, and Rani to portray Kashibai.
5. After Aish-Salman, Bhansali wanted Katrina-Salman to play the main roles.
After Aish-Salman could not happen, Sanjay looked at Katrina-Salman to play the roles. Various sources revealed that Salman personally had a talk with Katrina and also introduced Katrina to the director saying, “This is your Mastani”.
6. Priyanka learned Marathi to do justice to her role.
In preparation for the role of Kashibai, Priyanka underwent a 15-day-long intensive training to learn the Marathi language and also to adopt the Marathi accent.
7. Ranveer shaved his head to lend greater authenticity to his character.
It was a surprise that the ‘Tadad tatad’ actor, who flaunted his hair, completely shaved it for the movie. In addition to this, Singh also underwent intensive training to learn Marathi, horseback riding and was guided to gain some weight.
8. Ranveer and Deepika were trained in kalaripayattu.
In July 2014 it was confirmed that Bhansali had revived the project with Deepika and Ranveer Singh. Bhansali approached Daksha Seth to train the pair in kalaripayattu
, an ancient Indian martial art. Seth also trained Padukone in kathak
9. Tanvi Azmi was not the first choice for the role of Bajirao’s mother.
Other actresses reportedly considered for this role were Shabana Azmi, Dimple Kapadia and Supriya Pathak.
10. The pre-release revenue was higher than the budget of the movie.
‘Bajirao Mastani’ was made on a budget of Rs 120 crore and the satellite and music rights were sold for Rs 50 crore and Rs 70 crore respectively.
11. Padukone’s scenes were physically tough, such as sword fighting while sporting a 20 kg armor.
The challenge for Padukone in ‘Bajirao Mastani’ got tougher! According to sources, she would be spotted wielding a sword in 20 kg armor.
12. The famous designer Anju Modi paired up with Bhansali for his magnum opus, ‘Bajirao Mastani’.
According to reports, it took a year and a half for Anju just to research and compile notes on Marathas and their dressing style. She spent time studying available materials and miniature paintings in the Salarjung Museum in Hyderabad. The designer, who beautifully crafted angrakha
s and dhoti
s for Bajirao, ended up making 300 outfits for the film.