Akshay Kumar has been shooting for Kesari, which is based on the 1897 Battle of Saragarhi, in Wai over the past four months. The unit of the period drama was in for a shock yesterday when a massive fire broke out on the location in the early evening.
A source says, "Anurag Singh [director] was filming a war sequence on location when one of the bombs, being used for the scene, exploded. Within a matter of seconds, the entire set was gutted. Most of the lighting equipment and cameras were lost in the fire. Fortunately, not a single person of the 100-member-strong unit was hurt."
Kumar, who usually shoots through the day in Wai and flies back to Mumbai on his chartered chopper in the evenings, had left for the day around 3.30 pm. "None of the primary actors were required for the shoot. Akshay filmed his portions by late afternoon and then the director proceeded to can the war sequence with the additional artistes," adds the source.
With the set now destroyed in the fire, the team has the challenge of recreating the Gulistan Fort — one of the key sites of the battle. "Since a 10-day shoot is yet to be covered, a new set will need to be recreated. Though it's too early to say, the makers are now considering building the set in Film City in Mumbai."
Confirming the news, the police officials of Satara said, "The fire department of Bhuinj and those of surrounding areas were alerted [about the incident]. By evening, the fire was brought under control."