Kangana during the poster launch of Manikarnika.
The latest development is that filmmaker Ketan Mehta has sent a legal notice to Kangana Ranaut alleging that the actor connived with producer Kamal Jain and hijacked his Rani of Jhansi – The Warrior Queen project.
Sources close to the filmmaker have revealed that he had spent around ten years researching for the movie.
In the notice, Mehta alleged that he had first approached Kangana for the biopic of Lakshmi Bai in 2015 and that he got her green signal.
According to Mehta, Kangana publicly committed to doing the project with him in 2015 but later she signed Manikarnika – the Queen of Jhansi with another producer and director. The Manjhi: The Mountain Man director told IANS that he shared the “script and research material” of the film with Kangana in June 2015 and that she gave her consent for the project. The ambitious project in question is one Ketan’s reportedly been working on for ten years, Rani of Jhansi – The Warrior Queen.
“My legal notice says how we have worked on the project for two years and how all of a sudden everything happened”.
Expressing shock on seeing Kanagana launching Manikarnika with a different set of filmmakers, Ketan Mehta said, “Now suddenly that we heard about this film is being made with somebody else, I don’t know what they are doing with the film”. Kangana being privy to all the documents and research material along with the script, has knowingly hijacked the project in collusion with producer Kamal Jain, he said.
Kangana Ranaut prays at Ganga ghat in Varanasi. Ketan Mehta wanted to make the film in English for an worldwide audience while Kangana wanted the film to be in Hindi.
Ketan Mehta told an agency, “Yes it is true. Rani of Jhansi is one of the most fascinating characters of human history”. We had an worldwide producer and we were looking for an Indian co-producer. He found this completely unethical. While Kangana was working on clearing her schedule and working on dates to start shooting for the film, Mehta was working on the script, doing more research and brought an global producer on board. Kangana Ranaut is yet to respond to Ketan Mehta’s allegations.
Mehta is the maker of global award winning films like “Mirch Masala“, “Sardar” (on the life of Sardar Patel), “Maya Memsaab“, “Mangal Pandey – The Rising” and most recently “Manjhi- The Mountain Man“.
Hindustan Times tried contacting Kangana’s manager, but there was no response.