Kamathipura comes alive at night; Alia Bhatt starts shooting for Gangubai Kathiawadi

Updated: 06 October, 2020 08:22 IST | Uma Ramasubramanian | Mumbai

Alia Bhatt resumes shooting for Sanjay Leela Bhansali's Gangubai Kathiawadi with the night shift at Film City.

Sanjay Leela Bhansali; (left) Bhatt outside the filmmaker's office on September 23. Pic/Yogen Shah
Sanjay Leela Bhansali; (left) Bhatt outside the filmmaker's office on September 23. Pic/Yogen Shah

Last month, mid-day had reported that Sanjay Leela Bhansali and Alia Bhatt were poised to begin work on Gangubai Kathiawadi in the first week of October (Going back to Kamathipura?, September 23). The actor was often spotted outside the filmmaker's office over the past few weeks as they presumably charted the way forward. No sooner did we turn the calendar to October than Bhansali — a stickler for discipline — retraced his steps to Film City and resumed his place behind the camera after almost seven months, ready to tell the gritty story of the protagonist.

A source reveals that the unit had been filming night sequences before work was suspended in March. "To maintain continuity, Sanjay sir picked up the shoot exactly from where he had left it. Since October 1, Alia and the team have been reporting to the set by 7 pm, and the stint goes on till the wee hours of the morning. Although a part of the grand set had been pulled down ahead of the monsoons, the portion resembling Kamathipura had been left untouched. So, the director has been able to shoot without any hiccup," says the source.

Alia Bhatt in Gangubai Kathiawadi
Alia Bhatt in Gangubai Kathiawadi

Adapted from one of the chapters in Hussain Zaidi's Mafia Queens of Mumbai, the biographical drama sees Bhatt portray Gangubai Kothewali, the fierce madam of Kamathipura brothels in the '60s who was rumoured to have gangsters as clients. Though the film is mounted on a large canvas in keeping with the auteur's signature style, Bhansali is currently working with a lean crew in accordance with the state government's guidelines. The source adds, "A 50-member team, including the cast, has been hand-picked for this schedule that will see Sanjay sir wrap up Alia's scenes. While television actor Shantanu Maheshwari had filmed his song before the lockdown, the shoot of two more tracks is on the cards."

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First Published: 06 October, 2020 07:08 IST

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