Sanjay Leela Bhansali scraps Shabana Azmi, Mumtaz’s roles in Heeramandi

Heeramandi stars Sonakashi Sinha, Richa Chadha, Aditi Rao Hydari, Huma Qureshi and Manisha Koirala

Getty Images
Getty Images

Subhash K Jha

Rather than sign alternative actresses, the perfectionist creator that he is, Sanjay Leela Bhansali has decided to scrap the roles that he offered to the legendary actresses Shabana Azmi and Mumtaz in Heeramandi.

“They were important but brief roles, written with the two iconic actresses Shabana Azmi and Mumtaz in mind.

When Shabanaji and Mumtazji couldn’t do Heeramandi, Sanjay Bhansali decided to scrap the two roles rather than offer the parts to anyone else.”

Heeramandi stars Sonakashi Sinha, Richa Chadha, Aditi Rao Hydari, Huma Qureshi and Manisha Koirala.

“The series is being shot on huge sets representing a sprawling kotha. The shooting is taking longer than expected. Sequences that were meant to be shot in one day are taking as much as three days.”

Sources say Netflix has full faith in Bhansali and are not drawing any budget boundaries.

“Netflix knows about the Bhansali magic. They are fully committed to the project,” says an insider, adding that Netflix is looking at Heeramandi as their game-changer in India.

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