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50 sarees arrive for Rani Laxmibai in Swords And Sceptres

The film, directed by Swati Bhise, will have inputs from various experts in order to recreate the bygone era. 

Devika Bhise as Rani Laxmibai

Our Correspondent

Apart from Kangana Ranaut’s biopic of Rani Laxmibai, titled Manikarnika: The Queen Of Jhansi, director Swati Bhise’s film on the same topic is being shot in full swing currently. Titled Swords And Sceptres, it stars her daughter Devika Bhise in the title role.

The makers have disclosed in an official statement how they tried to recreate the bygone era. “Opinions were sought from Vikram Gaekwad, India’s leading make-up artist who also designed the Khopa, Marathi and Sanskrit experts like Madhav Apte, the former Indian test cricketer, Girish Murudkar (turban expert), and Usha Gupte, who read and translated many of the Sanskrit and Marathi texts; the primary one being Maza Pravas by Vishnubhat Godse (who was an eyewitness to events) in 1890,” said the statement.

Director Swati  has also given special attention to the costumes by creating as many as 50 sarees for the character of Laxmibai through designer Riyaz Ali Merchant. “The character of the Rani has more than 50 made-to-order special design nauvari (the traditional nine-yard Maharashtrian) saris. We researched the patterns prevalent in the era and wove each costume in a process that took over a year. Vidhi, my friend also created custom shoes to match the outfits,” she said.

While highlighting the greatness of Laxmibai, Swati added, “She did not wait for a man to come to the rescue. She took control of a situation and became a statesman, general and warrior. This is not just about the glamour of the period, it’s also about grit of an extraordinary woman. With Swords and Sceptres, you will get to see the real Rani of Jhansi.”