Sanjay Leela Bhansali with Alia Bhatt
Sanjay Leela Bhansali with Alia Bhatt Image Credit: Bhansali Productions

With ‘Gangubai Kathiawadi’ entering Bollywood’s coveted 100 crore club or crossing Rs1 billion in earnings at the box office, filmmaker Sanjay Leela Bhansali is now ready to shift his focus on his Netflix series ‘Heeramandi’.

The period drama will commence filming by March-end, according to recent media reports, with Bollywood Hungama stating that a grand set worth Rs17.5 million has been erected at Mumbai’s Film City to re-create the Pakistani city of Lahore from 1945.

TAB SANJAY LEELA-1645605581376
Sanjay Leela Bhansali Image Credit: AFP

The series, which is bring to light ‘stories of love and betrayal in the lives of courtesans in pre-independence India,’ according to it Netflix synopsis, is expected to have Bhansali’s trademark touch with larger than life songs and choreography.

Speaking about his project in September of last year, Bhansali was quoted by IANS about the inspiration behind the series. “‘Heeramandi’ was something that my friend Moin Baig got to me as a 14-page story, 14 years ago and then finally when we presented it to Netflix, they loved it and they thought it had great potential to make a mega-series.

“It is very ambitious, it’s very big and vast. It tells you the story of courtesans. They kept music, poetry and dance and the art of living. It shows the politics within the brothels and how to emerge as the winner. It is a difficult one but I hope we come across with flying colours this time.”

Alia Bhatt in 'Gangubai Kathiawadi'
Alia Bhatt in 'Gangubai Kathiawadi' Image Credit: IMDB

His current film, ‘Gangubai Kathiawadi’, is on similar lines delving into the red light district of Mumbai’s Kamathipura and essaying the story of one of its most famous characters who turned social activist and batted for the betterment of the ladies forced into the trade. The movie stars Alia Bhatt in the lead and has earned critical acclaim for the actress and the maverick filmmaker.