From Kangana Ranaut to Ankita Lokhande, who plays who in Manikarnika
The first trailer for Manikarnika: The Queen of Jhansi was released amid huge fanfare on Tuesday, and it promises epic action and a patriotic story. Based on the life of Rani Laxmibai, the film will be released on Republic Day, 2019.
Kangana Ranaut stars in the titular role, and also makes her debut as director - she stepped in for original director Radha Krishna Jagarlamudi after creative differences and scheduling conflicts crept in. Manikarnika features an ensemble cast of character actors, who play important historical figures in the film. Here’s a primer on who plays who in the historical epic.
Kangana Ranaut as Manikarnika
Rani Laxmibai was one of the leading figures of the First War for Indian Independence against the British in 1857, and became a symbol of resistance against the British Raj.
Atul Kulkarni as Tantia Tope
Tantia Tope was a major figure in the 1857 war, and his name literally means ‘general’. The details around his death remain unclear. While he is believed to have been hanged by the British, contrasting reports suggest that he escaped.
Jisshu Sengupta as Gangadhar Rao
Born Gangadhar Rao Newalkar, he was the maharaja of Jhansi, and Manikarnika’s husband.
Suresh Oberoi as Bajirao II
Bajirao II was the last Peshwa of the Maratha Empire, and a puppet ruler installed by the Marathas. He is said to have fled his capital city of Pune and signed the Treaty of Bassein with the British, which led to the Second Anglo-Maratha War (1803-1805). One of his predecessors, Bajirao I, was played by Ranveer Singh in the film Bajirao Mastani.
Danny Denzongpa as Ghulam Ghaus Khan
Danny Denzongpa plays a character who is described as ‘experienced, brave and intelligent’ - a military leader who fought alongside Manikarnika.
Ankita Lokhande as Jhalkaribai
Jhalkaribai was an important soldier, who fought in Manikarnika’s female battalion. She once disguised herself as the queen during battle, allowing her to escape.
Manikarnika has been scheduled for a January 25 release, and will be screened in 3000 theatres. It will clash with Hrithik Roshan’s Super 30.
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