No animals were harmed. This comforting disclaimer that allows animal lovers to enjoy a film may go missing from Sanjay Leela Bhansali's 'Bajirao Mastani'. For, a mare died on the set a few weeks ago during a fight sequence.
From left: Deepika Padukone, Sanjay Leela Bhansali and Ranveer Singh
A source says several horses and elephants were transported to Rajasthan by a city-based firm for the period drama's outdoor schedule. "Around 18 horses were sent by Suyaushka company owned by Yash Verma. During the shoot of a fight sequence, this mare which was unwell collided with a horse, collapsed and died soon after. She was already undergoing treatment as she had been unwell since the time she was sent to Rajasthan," says an insider.
While Yash could not be reached, his father Pappu Verma confirms the story. "Yes, one mare died, but it was a natural death. She fell sick, perhaps due to the weather conditions there. The production house had been taking care of the animals really well," he states.
Another source, who was present on the set, told us that the shoot was cancelled for half a day following the mare's death.
Bhansali was not available for comment.