‘The Lunchbox’ Casting Director Seher Aly Latif Dies in Mumbai

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The Lunchbox” casting director and producer Seher Aly Latif died in Mumbai on Monday of a renal failure. She was in her early 40s.

Latif was one of the most sought-after casting directors for international projects set in India or with a significant India component. Her casting director credits include “The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel” and its sequel “Million Dollar Arm,” as well as recent Bollywood films such as “Shakuntala Devi” and “Durgamati: The Myth.”

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Latif’s credits for casting in India include “Eat Pray Love,” “Zero Dark Thirty,” “McMafia,” “Sense8,” “Furious 7” and “The Hundred-Foot Journey.”

Along with her associate Shivani Saran, Latif founded Mutant Films in 2016. The company produced Netflix film “Maska,” Netflix series “Bhaag Beanie Bhaag” and also co-produced the sports drama “Gold,” starring Akshay Kumar.

Nimrat Kaur, one of the leads of “The Lunchbox,” tweeted: “One of the kindest, most loving people Mumbai gifted my life with. Still trying to process this unreal news…. Travel on into the light my dearest, sweetest Seher. The unpredictable, ghastly shortness of life remains baffling… Await to meet you on the other side.”

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Ritesh Batra, director of “The Lunchbox” and “Our Souls at Night,” tweeted: “I don’t believe it, unfair parting with a kind soul and real friend. Goodbye Seher, I hope there is another side.”

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Irrfan Khan, the acclaimed male lead of “The Lunchbox,” died in 2020.

Swara Bhasker, who starred in “Bhaag Beanie Bhaag, tweeted: “There are no words. Seher Latif is no more. This is cruelty. So young, so much to give. Can’t even utter RIP. We spoke only two weeks ago, I teased her & she laughed.. It is unimaginable that we won’t see her wide smile anymore. I can’t fathom this.”

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Actor Shashank Arora (“The Elder One”), who previously worked as a casting assistant with Latif on several films including “Furious 7” and “Tigers,” tweeted:

“Seher Latif. A kind, brilliant, empathetic artist, casting director, producer, human being. A rare friend. First person to give me a job during difficult first years in Bombay. An inspiring leader. Unable to process this. World cinema lost a great one. See you on the other side.”

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