Adapting the real-life stories of Gujarati stockbroker Harshad Mehta, who was the mastermind of the 1992 securities scam worth thousands of crores, the series is based on the book titled The Scam: Who Won, Who Lost, Who Got Away by journalists Debashis Basu and Sucheta Dalal.
The series features eminent Gujarati theatre and film actor Pratik Gandhi in the lead role as Harshad Mehta. The rest of the cast include Satish Kaushik, Shreya Dhanwanthary, Rajat Kapoor, Anant Mahadevan, Sharib Hashmi, KK Raina, Nikhil Dwivedi and Lalit Parimoo.
Harshad Mehta, a Gujarat-born and Mumbai-based stockbroker, was convicted by the Bombay High Court and Supreme Court in the alleged financial scandal valued at Rs 500 crore. He died from heart failure while in judicial custody in 2001.
Recalling the scam in an interview with Scroll, Hansal Mehta said: “People spoke to me about their experiences as if [Harshad] was some sort of a flawed hero figure – a hero fallen from grace for them.”
The director said that the allure wasn’t so much to do with history as it is to present human, flawed characters as cautionary tales to audiences.
Winner of a National Award, Hansal Mehta has made films like Shahid (2013) based on Shahid Azmi starring Rajkumar Rao; Aligarh(2016) based on linguist and author Ramchandra Siras and Omerta (2018) based on Ahmed Omar Saeed Sheikh, the British terrorist of Pakistani descent, showing his affinity towards making character-driven movies.
Harshad Mehta has inspired several other cinematic projects. His scam had also inspired the Ullu web series The Bull of Dalal Street and the upcoming Abhishek Bachchan-starrer Disney+ Hotstar original film The Big Bull is also based on the life of the stock broker.