Soap queen Ekta Kapoor, a couple of months ago, had announced her plans to turn the classic love story, Bajirao Mastani, into a TV show with a huge star cast. The show was supposedly green-lit by Hindi general entertainment channel Colors.
Within a couple of days, news broke that filmmaker Sanjay Leela Bhansali, whose last release, Guzaarish (2010) with Hrithik Roshan and Aishwarya Rai Bachchan had bombed at the box office, was planning to resurrect his film project Bajirao Mastani with Shah Rukh Khan, instead of his previous choice Salman Khan.
Riding high on the success of her latest release, The Dirty Picture, Ekta, who is currently working on the 20-year leap in her popular daily soap, Pavitra Rishta on Zee TV, admits she’s unfazed. “Anyone can make Bajirao Mastani. It’s a classic, sitting in public domain. We’ve read about it in schoolbooks and storybooks. No one holds a copyright to it,” she says, adding, “My decision to make a show isn’t driven by anything that anyone else plans to do.”
Ask if she and Bhansali spoke after he expressed his desire to restart his project and Ekta says, “I’m sure whatever Bhansali sir makes will be a classic. But the way we’ll package the story into 500-odd episodes, and the way he’d pack the historic Maratha love story, will be totally different and will be no competition to one another.”
She adds, “We’re making the love story for different viewers, so we’re free to interpret the story in our own ways.”