He frames stories in his camera for the silver screen, while she weaves sagas through her costumes. After adding colour to Sanjay Leela Bhansali’s ‘Goliyon Ki Rasleela – Ram Leela’, Anju Modi is again working with Sanjay Leela Bhansali in ‘Bajirao Mastani’. The designer says working with the director has only made her get better in her craft.
Bhansali is known for being detail-oriented and being a hard task master. But Modi asserts that his trait of being "true to his vision" has guided her scissors to the right direction.
"Last time when I worked with Sanjay Leela Bhansali then we kind of liked each other’s creativity. I evolved as a designer after working with him. A lot of credit goes to him," Modi said here during an exclusive interaction before the release of the much awaited film.
"So, when he approached me for ‘Bajirao Mastani’, I thought it was really nice and lucky for me to dress the most beautiful three people of Bollywood industry . The script itself was a beautiful story. It is a period drama," she added.
‘Bajirao Mastani’ brings Bollywood’s talented trio — Deepika Padukone, Ranveer Singh and Priyanka Chopra– together and narrates the love story of Mastani, who was the second wife of Maratha Peshwa Bajirao I. And creates a love triangle with Bajirao’s first wife Kashibai.
Modi took a leaf out of yet-to-release historical saga on the runway of Blenders Pride Fashion Tour 2015 here when she painted a picture of opulence of the era through her collection with Bollywood’s ‘Mastani’ Deepika as her muse.
While many may complain about Bhansali being rigid about his work, Modi is definitely not one of them.
Modi, who launched her label in 1990, said: "It is a very good trait in the creative person that he is true to his vision, idea and doesn’t compromise and that makes you work harder and discover potential within and meet up his expectation. All this makes me a better designer".
For the film, Modi has travelled back in time and walked through all the lanes of the era — virtually. She has brought different facets of the 18th century into her costumes, and that was not a cakewalk for her.
"All the three characters were very different — Bajirao, Mastani and Kashibai. All of them are very challenging because they are not day to day characters.
"Mastani was a Persian character and there wasn’t much of a reference available for her. I had to go back in time mentally and live in those times and then think about the costumes," said Modi.
The first few glimpses of the movie evoke opulence, grandeur and larger than life — be it sets, costumes or jewellery or movie making. Modi turned all her attention to revisiting the era and weaving magic through her creations. She says she referred to a lot of paintings, reference material available from the 18th century and museum visits for her research.
Who doesn’t want to style the most stylish people of tinsel town — Ranveer, Deepika and Priyanka and Modi is no different.
Modi, who had styled Deepika and Priyanka in the 2013 film Goliyon ki Rasleela…, notes that it was a "pleasure" working with them, adding that Ranveer is a perfect muse as he can carry off anything.
After ‘Bajirao Mastani’, Modi, who has been tirelessly working with master artisans across the country and is reviving age-old Indian techniques, asserts that she will "carry on her day to day business work" post the film, which will hit the screens on December 18.