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Anuja Sathe is a good blend of beauty and performance, says Ek Thi Begum director Sachin Darekar

The bilingual web-series is about a woman who vows to finish off the leader of a deadly gang for killing her husband.

Keyur Seta

Ek Thi Begum is a web-series in Hindi and Marathi that tells the story of an ordinary woman who wages war against the powerful gangsters of Bombay in the 1980s to avenge her husband’s murder. Actress Anuja Sathe plays the woman in the web-series.

Director Sachin Darekar said Sathe was the first choice for the role. “When our show was finalized with MX Player, we had a few names,” he told Cinestaan.com in a conversation. “But we unanimously zeroed in on Anuja. She is a very good actress. She is good-looking and also a good performer. As per the requirement, we found a good blend of beauty and performer in her.”

Darekar said Sathe instantly agreed to come on board after listening to the narration. “It is important for the performer to get a kick out of it,” the director said.

Sachin Darekar

Ek Thi Begum is Darekar’s first web-series as writer and director. He has directed one Marathi movie earlier, called Party (2018). Prior to that, he has been a writer in Marathi cinema for more than a decade, giving us such acclaimed films as Madholal: Keep Walking (2009), Morya (2011) and Aayna Ka Bayna (2012).

As a writer, Darekar has worked with Sathe earlier on the film Asa Mee Ashi Tee (2013) and on the Marathi television serial Lagori: Maitri Returns. Following this, Sathe went on to do Hindi films like Blackmail (2018) with Irrfan Khan and Parmanu: The Story Of Pokhran (2018) with John Abraham. Hence, Darekar wasn’t sure if she would be the same person he knew.

“She has worked with the likes of John Abraham and Irrfan Khan. So I was a bit sceptical because people usually become a bit different after working in Hindi films," he said. "But I realized she is still the same person I had met on Atul Kale’s sets [for Asa Mee Ashi Tee]. She is dedicated and energetic, like before.”

Darekar was highly appreciative of Sathe’s dedication during the 63 days of the shoot, most of which took place at night as per the demand of the story. “She was needed almost every day since the series is based on her character. Right from the workshop till the last day of the shoot, she had the same energy and dedication, even at 4:30 am. Hats off to her,” he said. 

Ek Thi Begum is being streaming on MX Player since 8 April.

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