Sanjay Leela Bhansali Defends Sharmin Segal Amid Heavy Trolling: Didn’t Cast Her Because She's My Niece

Following the show’s release, Sharmin Segal faced criticism and was labeled a “nepo kid.” However, Bhansali clarified that Sharmin did not receive any special treatment or advantages from him. Read on to know the details

Filmmaker Sanjay Leela Bhansali, who is currently basking in the success of his debut web series, Heeramandi: The Diamond Bazaar, has defended the casting of her niece Sharmin Segal in the series. In a recent interview, Bhansali revealed that she was not signed because she was her niece adding that she had to go through the grind.

Released on May 1, the period drama received mixed reviews from critics and audiences. While the show was praised for the actors’ outstanding performances, Bhansali’s niece, actress Sharmin Segal, faced harsh criticism for her “expressionless” acting throughout the series.

Bhansali, while speaking to a leading publication, clarified, “She has a face of what Alamzeb should be, somebody who doesn’t want to be a tawaif or has no makings of it. You needed somebody with very fresh, innocent quality to her, somebody who doesn’t talk like a tawaif. And that person wants to break free with some pursuit of wanting to write poetry. So, I felt that Sharmin was the correct choice for Alamzeb.”

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A post shared by Sharmin Segal Mehta (@sharminsegal)

 

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A post shared by Sharmin Segal Mehta (@sharminsegal)

Following the show’s release, Sharmin faced criticism and was labeled a “nepo kid.” However, Bhansali clarified that Sharmin did not receive any special treatment or advantages from him. She had to work just as hard as everyone else to earn the role.

Opening up about how Sharmin had to go through the grind, Bhansali added, “I didn’t cast her because she’s my niece. She had to go through the grind. There were innumerable number of tests and auditions.”

He continued, “There was no end to the number of tests I’ve done with her. After I’ve decided to cast her, then I said you have to go through the grind, you have to get it right. Because this is a world, you’ve never been to. You’ve never acted in a world like that. All these other actors on the show have worked over the period of time in a film like this or a character like this. They have understood all these nazakat and thumka and nakhra.”

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