Gulzar is one of Indian cinema's most sensitive and creative directors; a lyricist par excellence; one whose work never fails to surprise, bring a tear to the eye or a smile on the lips; a humble man with humble beginnings who is unafraid of experimenting. A career that began more than three decades ago comprises a rich repertoire of not just films, but also authoring several anthologies of short stories, including Raavi Paar and Other stories. One of the two immensely popular television serials that he has directed has been on the life of Mirza Ghalib, who commands Gulzar's hearstrings, and the most recent one is based on the works of Munshi Premchand. Winner of the Sahitya Akademi award, Gulzar's interest in literature is more than just a passing fancy. He writes poetry, short stories, all his works have been translated into English, and he is the creator of the three-line poem, called Triveni. Writing or Gulzar, is his first love, his passion, his junoon, his life breath.
Sunjoy Shekhar is a storyteller. He has written more than three-thousand hours of television programming for a host of TV channels in India and Indonesia-some have bombed, most have become household names. He divides his time between Mumbai, New Delhi and Jakarta.
What cab be seen is called a scene; and a sequence of scenes is called a screenplay. In English two words are used for it -a screenplay and a scenario. Both are almost alike, but in screenplay the techniques of 'cut', 'dissolve' and others are also written down as directions, which are helpful to the director. Even the time of the 'set' is noted down to denote whether the action takes place in the morning, evening, afternoon or night. These details are required when the director films the screenplay otherwise these technical directions are an unnecessary obstruction in reading. Therefore, a scenario is best suited or a continuous flow of reading, so that it read like a novel, without any hindrance. This is what is known as a screenplay.
In literature, screenplay is a complete form. The first example that comes to mind is Elia Kazan's screenplay America America. This director first wrote the screenplay, published it and then made a film on it. There are many authors in literature who write their novels almost like screenplays. Sharat Chandra's best novels are very close to this form.
One of my motive to present this screenplay is to acquaint the reader with this form and secondly to let the TV and cinema fans know how a novel is adapted into a screenplay. I must admit that I am no expert on adaptation; another writer or director would, perhaps, create a better screenplay.
The style of writing a screenplay often differs from the original story, and becomes more like an interpretation of the story, the novel or the autobiography. The famous films Anarkali and Mughal-e-Azam can be cited as examples, which were both derived from the same play. The screenplay of Devdas kept changing as many times it was made and in as many languages it was translated into. With the advent of TV there has been a tremendous increase in the demand for screenplays. Screenplays of short stories are being written. A great deal of work is being done on the stories of Ahmad Nadeem Qasmi, Rajinder Singh Bedi, Bhishm Sahni, Munshi Premchand and many others. Several serials are written as screenplays. Since the stipulations of duration of TV films have to be adhered to strictly, the popular stories taken from classical literature have to be abridged sometimes or elaborated as the need may be.
I hope that this attempt of mine will prove to be useful to others as much as their experiences will enrich me and - a new channel might open, a new thought emerge a new wave rise, perhaps.
Back of the Book
The celebrated poet and filmmaker Gulzar explores the Aandhi of a relationship between a man and a woman caught between love and ambition, mingling political comment with a mature love story to evoke the picture of a tender relationship.
JK, the manager of Hotel Aashiana, finds his life coming apart at the seams when his wife, Arti Devi, storms into his hotel after a separation of nine long years. She has come to contest the elections but the stage is set or something else.
In a beautiful and quite riveting fashion, Gulzar transforms the form of story-telling crisscrossing the past and the present and what begins as a portrait of politics becomes a portrait of an extraordinary relationship between a man and a woman who need not be tethered to each other to complement each Other.
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