Reprising characters from an epic on the small screen could be a daunting task. And given that BR Chopra’s ’90s cult series, Mahabharat, is still etched in public memory, the makers of any new version of the epic have a high benchmark to cross. To ensure that their new show does justice to the theme, Star Plus and producer Siddharth Tewary of Swastik Pictures have roped in veteran designer Bhanu Athaiya.
Apart from working in several films, Athaiya had won an Oscar for her costumes in Gandhi (1982) and also worked on a Doordarshan television show called Terah Panne, which was produced by Hema Malini. A source says, “Since she is an authority on period costumes, the makers approached her last March to join the team. She happily agreed.” When contacted, Athaiya couldn’t comment as she was unwell. However, her office confirmed the news.
“Bhanuji has been guiding the show’s costume designer, Nidhi Yasha, who has worked on some sketches. Together, they came up with the final look of the characters. The makers wanted them to create outfits that capture the ancient era but were different from the ones seen in the older serial by Chopra” says the source. The show is currently being shot and will soon launch on the channel.