Challenge was more emotional than physical: Bhansali on Jauhar scene

Mumbai :  Shooting the most iconic sequence in “Padmaavat” was no bed of roses, recounts filmmaker Sanjay Leela Bhansali, who describes it as being an “emotional” challenge.

The Jauhar sequence which forms the climax of “Padmaavat”, was shot in the outdoors of Film City on the outskirts of Mumbai.

“It was scorching heat and we shot with 350 junior artistes. The physical discomfort was somehow bearable. But the challenge was more emotional than physical. By the end of the shooting of the Jauhar sequence, there were frayed nerves and rising tempers,” Bhansali recalled.

The shooting of the scene went on for a week, and the junior artistes got restless. They would meander off in groups in between shoots and doze off due to exhaustion. Then when the shot was ready, there would be a head count.

The Jauhar scene was specially tough on actress Deepika Padukone who was emotionally drained by the end of it.

Ranveer Singh was physically ill.

“In the shot where the women throw hot coal on Ranveer, we used burning rubber tyres to look like burning coals. Burning rubber sends off a very strong stench. Every time Ranveer would go into a corner to puke before doing the shot.

“We were all physically and emotionally exhausted by the time the sequence was shot. To then have some cynics dismiss the Jauhar sequence as regressive and socio-politically incorrect is a huge blow to all the hard work that we all did.”

The scene led to lots of debates as some critics felt Bhansali has glorified the practice of self-immolation.


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