The Making Of The Opulent Sets Of Bajirao Mastani
When you hear the name Sanjay Leela Bhansali one of the first things that comes to your mind is the grandeur, opulence and scale of his movies. Right from the length of the movie (!) to the costumes, the dialect, the look of the actors – everything is done on the largest and most extreme scale resulting in the most brilliant visual treat. This is most true in the case of the sets we are treated to in a Sanjay Leela Bhansali movie. Devdas, Guzaarish and Ram Leela were all brilliant examples to attest to this fact and now with the upcoming Bajirao Mastani, which was a dream project for the perfectionist director (and overe a decade in the making!) Sanjay Leela Bhansali has taken his movie sets to all new heights!
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Production designers/art directors Sujeet Sawant, Sriram Iyengar and Saloni Dhatrak (in conversation with dailybhaskar) said that they began research for the set design nearly 12 years ago. From pre-production to “it’s a wrap!”, the entire set design/construction process took 19 months and 19 art directors to complete.
Speaking about the Aina Mahal featured in the Deewani Mastani song, the designers say the lotus design was made out of handmade mud texture with mirror work embedded into it. The lotus motif was weaved through the sets of the movie including Kashibai’s (Priyanka Chopra) villa.
The movie features two outdoor sequences for war sequences which was challenging as the elements not only included lighting and artwork but also elephants and horses!
- The first thing to be designed was Kashibai’s room set
- The manual antique velvet fan in Kashibai’s room alone was worth INR 1.5 Lac
- The bed sheet and covers were made of real zari worth worth INR 1 Lac
- Aena Mahal is made of 4300 planks and Shaniwar Wada is made of 45,000 planks! Just for support!
- 550 laborers worked for 43 days straight on the sets
- Shaniwar Wada took 45 days to construct