Panipat posters: Sanjay Dutt transforms into invader Ahmad Shah Abdali in Arjun Kapoor film, see pics

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Sanjay Dutt plays Ahmad Shah Durrani in Ashutosh Gowariker’s period drama, Panipat. It also stars Arjun Kapoor and Kriti Sanon in lead roles.

Actor Sanjay Dutt dropped his first look as Ahmad Shah Durrani in Ashutosh Gowariker’s ambitious period piece, Panipat. The trailer of the film starring Arjun Kapoor and Kriti Sanon in lead roles is expected on Tuesday.

The film is based on the third battle of Panipat, which was fought between the northern expeditionary force of the Maratha Empire and the invading forces of the King of Afghanistan, Durrani. He had two Indian allies – the Rohilla Afghans of the Doab and Shuja-ud-Daula, the Nawab of Awadh. The event is significant in modern Indian history as it halted the march of the Maratha empire, eventually leading to the rise of the British in India.

Arjun plays the role of Maratha leader Sadashivrao Bhau while Kriti is Parvati Bai. Arjun had gone bald for the role, hiding his look with baseball caps for months. The historical period drama is highly awaited but has been largely kept under wraps.

Talking about the film, Kriti recently told PTI, “It is a great story that needs to be told. I like the character of Parvati Bai, especially the way Ashu sir has written it. It did attract me as I have never done something like this before. I was initially confused like how come he thought of me to play this Marathi girl because I am a North Indian, Punjabi. I was a little surprised. But I did not want to let go of the opportunity to do a period film with a director, who is a legend in that space. It is very different from what I have done and so it becomes exciting and challenging at the same time. That is how you break certain barriers.”

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The film also stars Mohnish Bahl, Padmini Kolhapure and Zeenat Aman. Produced by Sunita Gowariker and Rohit Shelatkar’s company Vision World, it is scheduled to release on December 6.

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