Creativity is allowing yourself to make mistakes. Art is knowing which ones to keep. Musings from someone who sees stories everywhere.

Thursday, January 02, 2014

Mohini: of Bollywood Dreams and Obsessions

Ramendra Kumar  is a prolific author with several awards and twenty-three books to his credit. Best known for his many books for children, he is a regular at literary festivals and seminars in India and abroad.  

Mohini of Bollywood Dreams and ObsessionHis latest work, a pageturner saga and his first novel for adults, is about the reality and tears, the passion, intrigue and suspense, the dreams, loves and heartbreaks behind the magical world of Bollywood. Mohini of Bollywood Dreams and Obsession is a racy story of three people driven by their obsessions.

A young girl growing up in the shadow of Bollywood secretly dreams of becoming the number one star in the industry. In her ruthless, and sometimes reckless, pursuit, she uses and is used by many individuals. However, there are two men in her life who love her to absolute distraction. One she betrays, and the other she rejects. Both unleash vengeance and pit themselves against each other as the fast-paced story unfolds.

Ramen, as he is popularly known, chose to set his tale in Bollywood because "We are a film crazy nation. Every aspect of our life and living is impacted by movies.   I too  grew  up watching movies and  was hugely influenced by them. And hence, when I chose to write my first novel for adults  Bollywood was a natural choice." 

This film buff "grew up watching re-runs of  classics like Pyaasa, Jagte Raho, Chalti Ka Naam Gaadi,   Anand , Jaane bhi do yaaron,  et al. From snatches of conversation at home I came to know the buzz behind Bollywood : how a  leading  heroine dressed up as a tribal and  managed to grab the lead role in a blockbuster, how a showman turned marketing wisdom on its head to make his movie a mega hit,  how a brash  wannabe star   tried manipulating the system   in an attempt to bag the   top award of the country. All these delicious nuggets have been scattered in the pages of Mohini. Most of the rest is from my imagination."

The current crop of stars have not inspired the main characters, Ramen shares. "However, a few of  the supporting ones do bear resemblance to the stars and superstars of  recent times."

Mohini has all the elements of a Bollywood masala movie. If it is adapted for the silver screen, Ramen feels Deepika Padukone would be the perfect choice for the lead role. "She has the classic looks, the talent, the attitude and the chutzpah to essay the character to perfection," he shares, as he signs off.

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