Sanjay Leela Bhansali Reveals He Wanted To Cast THESE Pakistani Actors And Actress For 'Heeramandi'

Sanjay Leela Bhansali shared that along with Rekha and Kareena Kapoor, he wanted to cast two Pakistani actors and an actress for his debut web series, 'Heeramandi : The Diamond Bazaar'.


By Medha Sengupta Last Updated:


Sanjay Leela Bhansali Reveals He Wanted To Cast THESE Pakistani Actors And Actress For 'Heeramandi'

Sanjay Leela Bhansali is the man of the hour as his debut web series, Heeramandi: The Diamond Bazaar, released on Netflix on April 1, 2024. Everyone is talking about the over-the-top screenplay and cinematography of the series, along with its set design. The series has a stellar cast led by Richa Chadha, Aditi Rao Hydari, Sanjeeda Shaikh, Manisha Koirala, Sonakshi Sinha, and Sharmin Segal, among others. While the cast of Heeramandi has garnered much love and attention from the audience, Sanjay recently revealed that he, at one point, wanted to cast a few Pakistani actors in the series.

Sanjay Leela Bhansali shared that Heeramandi: The Diamond Bazar was initially planned to be a film

Sanjay Leela Bhansali was recently in Los Angeles for the premiere of his upcoming web series, Heeramandi. Talking about the series, SLB revealed that it had been in his mind for 18 years. Initially, he wanted to make it into a film. However, the plot was too extensive to be summarized in a film, so he decided to make a series out of it. 

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Sanjay Leela Bhansali revealed at one point he wanted to cast Pakistani actors in Heeremandi 

In the same interactive session, Sanjay Leela Bhansali revealed he initially planned to cast Rekha, Kareena Kapoor and Rani Mukherjee in the series. However, he was also interested in casting Fawad Khan, Imran Abbas and Mahira Khan at one point. Although things did not work out as planned, Sanjay was happy about his final cast. Talking about the same, Sanjay Leela Bhansali added:

"I had multiple castings in my mind, the idea has been there for 18 years. I thought about Rekha ji and then Kareena Kapoor Khan and Rani Mukerji. It was a film back then. I then also thought about Mahira Khan, the Pakistani actress, and Imran Abbas and Fawad Khan were also in my mind at one point of time. But I ended up with this ensemble cast."

Imran Abbas appreciated Sanjay Leela Bhansali for accepting his desire to cast Pakistani actors

As soon as the interview of SLB gained traction, Imran Abbas talked about it on his X account (former Twitter). He gave a shoutout to Sanjay for accepting his desire to cast Pakistani actors and giving a clarification of the same on an international platform. For the unversed Imran Abbas was recently mocked by netizens after he claimed that many Bollywood hits like Aditya Roy Kapur's Aashiqui 2, Ram Leela and even Sushant Singh Rajput's role as 'Sarfaraz' in PK was initially offered to him. 

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What is Heeramandi: The Diamond Bazaar all about?

Heeramandi: The Diamond Bazaar is not just another project from Sanjay Leela Bhansali, but his directorial magnum opus and his debut in the world of OTT. The series boasts a star-studded cast, including Sonakshi Sinha, Manisha Koirala, Aditi Rao Hydari, Richa Chadda, Sanjeeda Saikh, and many more. It is a period drama that delves into the lives and struggles of the tawaifs in the red-light district of Heera Mandi in Lahore during the Indian independence movement against British rule. This is a project that promises to be a visual and emotional spectacle.

Let us know your views on Sanjay Leela Bhansali's revelations.

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