Joined: 21 June 2005
Traditionally speaking, Bollywood isn't the domain of the well-read. While actors trendily say they can't put down their copy of The Da Vinci Code or the latest Chicken Soup For The Casting Couch-Struck Starlet's Soul, a large majority of the fraternity simply prefer looking at glossy pictures.
But things appear to be sobering up, as Bollywood prepares to ignite a reprint trend by adapting several contemporary books to celluloid. Here's a quick look at what's in store for us.
The book, by Pulitzer Prize-winner Jhumpa Lahiri, delves into the life of Gogol Ganguli, a boy not in love with his alliterative name.
His story of self-discovery is translated onto screen by Mira Nair, and stars Kal Penn in the title role. Tabu and Irfan Khan play his parents, while Zuleikha Robinson and Gabriel Byrne have pivotal roles.
Feelers: Based on the fact that Jhumpa has a cameo in the film, playing an aunt who shares her name, this might not be a big departure from the source material. Also, there's Tabu, so we're gonna watch for sure. Then again, Nair's last film was Vanity Fair. Oo-er.
The Mistress Of Spices
For women readers, Chitra Banerjee Divakaruni is a cult, which makes this a tricky book to adapt. Then again, most desi readers are primarily reading the book today thinking of actress playing the lead, so they should be more than pacified.
The film marks the directorial debut of Paul Mayeda Berges, better known as Gurinder Chadha's husband. Aishwarya Rai stars in the lead as Tilo, opposite Dylan McDermott. Anupam Kher, Nitin Ganatra, and Ayesha Dharker are also present.
Feelers: If made well, it could turn into something Chocolat-like. Otherwise, we're in for a torrid time. Again, a beautiful woman forces us to hit theatres -- long live Padma Lakshmi.
The Blue Umbrella
Ruskin Bond's delightful children's book is the simple tale of Biniya, a smalltown girl with what seems to be the coolest umbrella in the world. It gets stolen and Biniya, while heartbroken, is nowhere close to giving up.
Directed by the often-startling Vishal Bhardwaj, this fable stars tiny debutante Shreya and the inimitable Pankaj Kapoor in the lead.
One Night @ The Call Center
After Five Point Someone, Chetan Bhagat penned this novel for a ready audience, and made a fortune. The inexpensive book flew off shelves and received mixed reviews.
However, it generated enough buzz for Bhagat to become familiar, and Bluffmaster director Rohan Sippy snapped up the rights. The story is, of course, as the title suggests.
Feelers: Abhishek Bachchan, the director's favourite (and only, thus far) leading man, may star in this adaptation as well. So what if the protagonist's almost a decade younger? The paycheck is likely to convince Bhagat to rewrite mostly everything. But the result might just be interesting; expect another multiplex matinee.
Joined: 27 January 2005
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