Kolkata Literature Festival Plays host to Vishal Bharadwaj; The craft of Indian Cinema Discussed at Length


Vishal Bharadwaj in conversation at the Kolkata Literature Festival

Director Bedabrata Pain was in discussion with Bollywood director Vishal Bharadwaj at the second edition of the Kolkata Literature Festival held at the Milan Mela grounds. The two directors conversed with each other on the craft of Indian cinema.


Vishal Bharadwaj narrated how he began his career in the field of music. “I used to ask a lot of uncomfortable questions like why do we need a song in this part of the movie or why such songs are required in the film. I realized that I will be out of work soon and hence to maintain my lifestyle, I sort of shifted to the world of film making” said the talented director. After doing Makdee, the director who was fascinated with underworld films started developing scripts for such films. He had composed music for Satya and was fascinated with the way Ram Gopal Verma made the film Satya.


When asked about his Shakespeare fixation, the director said with a smile “It was more a search for a good story which made me land up with Shakespeare. In my young days I had no great liking for the man or his writings. It was when I was going to pick up my god-son from his school that I asked him for a story book to read on our way back. He gave me the Lamb tales of Shakespeare. And the first story I read was Macbeth. I came back to Mumbai and I found a version in which both Shakespeare’s words and an abridged style was available”.


Vishal Bharadwaj who is a master at bringing out the craft from the actors highlighted that he never directs the actors on the sets. He lets them do the acting after giving them a briefing. It is only when that they do not perform as he wants that he actually comes to the scene and directs them.

The engaging conversation between the two directors was summed up with Vishal Bharadwaj stating that he was interested in the works of Shakespeare but not in the personal life of the talented writer. This answered the query of many people who had thought that the director will go to make a film on the dramatist William Shakespeare.

Priyanka Dutta

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