Actor Frieda Pinto is set to star in and produce series adaptation of author Alka Joshi’s bestselling debut novel The Henna Artist. According to Deadline, Miramax TV has bought the rights for the TV version of the book that was published by HarperCollins/MIRA in March.
Michael Edelstein will serve as executive producer on the show under his first-look deal with Miramax.
The Henna Artist focuses on 17-year old Lakshmi, who escapes from an abusive marriage and makes her way alone to the vibrant 1950s Jaipur. There, she becomes the most highly requested henna artist — and confidante — to the rich women of the upper class.
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Ok World! It's finally here. I have been patiently waiting to share this exciting news! I am so proud and honoured to be producing/starring in The Henna Artist. This book was on @reesesbookclub for the month of May and so a special shoutout to the awesome @reesewitherspoon for constantly introducing the world to wonderful, unique stories that keep our imagination alive and creativity flowing. @thealkajoshi is a phenomenal author who has painted a breathtaking world of India where the female characters are complex, nuanced and fight to have agency. Where the Indian culture of art and healing are both explored in depth and respected at the same time. I cannot imagine doing this with anyone other than my producing partner, my dear friend, Michael Edelstein. When Michael asked me to read The Henna Artist and invited me to produce this with him, I simply knew he could already see the future of this book in his experienced eyes and it was about to be groundbreaking. Together, we have a beautiful dream for this book that we are so excited to bring it to life. Thank you to Miramax TV for believing in this project, Marc Helwig and his entire team. To my fab team at CAA – Hylda, Ben, Harrison and Leah and my awesome manager Larry- your unwavering support and belief in me enables me to push the envelope and do all the things I dream of doing. Also, thank you Lakshmi Shastri – You empower me!
“As an actress, I cannot wait to dive back into the stories of my motherland and make my women (and my men) of all backgrounds, with all their good and their complexities, feel seen and heard. Lakshmi Shastri is not a puritanical woman. She empowers me, and I am honored to pass that feeling on to a very global audience,” Pinto said in a statement.
Miramax head of worldwide television Marc Helwig said the Slumdog Millionaire star is the best suited producing partner to bring the project alive on screen.
“It was clear to me from the first chapter that Freida was born to play Lakshmi. Fortunately, the project is blessed that not only is Freida a brilliant actress, but she is the perfect producing partner to help bring this project from book to screen,” he said.
Pinto added that Joshi’s book has tremendous potential to become a high-quality, multilayered television show that honours the glory and beauty of India.
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