Zee TV is set to launch a magnum opus period drama titled 'EK Tha Raja Ek Thi Rani' on July 27.
The show will be aired at 9.30 pm from Monday to Friday.
Leaving no stone unturned in taking its audiences back in time, Zee TV, in conjunction with the producers of the show Sphere Origins and Nilanjana Purkayastha, is pushing the envelope with regards to production values, meticulous research and attention to detail. Bringing the pre-independence era to life is a team of set and costume designers, engineers, architects and more than 500 workers.
As grand as the subject is, Zee TV has constructed a set, a grand palace, on the outskirts of Mumbai. It is believed to be one of the most expensive sets in the history of Indian television. According to the channel, the palace has a facade inspired from the famous Baroda Palace and is also, currently, the only waterproof set for a TV show. Brimming with elegance, classic charm and grandeur, the palaces, jewellery and costumes pay tribute to royal families who lived in unparalleled grandeur and luxury. Carpets weighing over 2.5 tonnes, chandeliers, antiques and vintage cars have specially been sourced, and carved wooden furniture is being crafted to replicate the designs prevalent in those times. Jewellery and royal 'poshaks' for the cast have been sourced from traditional kaarigars of UP, Delhi and Rajasthan. Coaches and trainers have been brought on board to train the cast in horse-riding, polo and the finer nuances of diction, body language and mannerisms of the people from that era. The cast and crew have also shot extensively in the palaces of Rajasthan.
Pradeep Hejmadi, business head, Zee TV, says, "Even when it comes to genres such as history and mythology, the most fascinating period that remains unexplored by Indian television is the pre-independence era. This vibrant period of India's history that saw a great upheaval also saw intense drama unfold in the lives of the royalty of the princely states. Behind empty walls of grandeur and fake displays of splendour was hidden the truth of erosion of wealth, insecurities, succumbing to British dominion, depression and bankruptcy. 'Ek Tha Raja Ek Thi Rani' is a story of love set against this most interesting canvas. It aims to give viewers an up, close and personal view of the lifestyles and some of the most closely guarded secrets of the rich and royal of the 1940s."
With the launch of this period drama, 'Qubool Hai' moves to the 7.30 pm slot, further fortifying the channel's early primetime band.
Producers Sunjoy and Comall Wadhwa of Sphere Origins, say, "The idea has been to look back at a glorious period of history for inspiration and churn out a timeless masterpiece that will entertain and enthrall TV audiences. The most daunting task at hand has been the re-creation of the pre-independence era, and the majestic lifestyles of the kings and queens of the princely states. Enormous research has gone to ensure authentic representation of the era and to create magic on screen. We have on board an ensemble of extremely impressive actors who beautifully fit the parts they are playing. The show will definitely turn out to be a clutter-breaker and, hopefully, the biggest fiction show of the year."
The show brings to the TV screen actors Dhrashti Dhami as the leading lady Gayatri; Siddhant Karnik will play the male lead Ranaji Indravadan Singh Deo, the intense and brooding prince of the royal family of Amerkot. Joining the duo is Anita Raj and veteran actor Surekha Sikri.