Rajit Kapur talks about book-to-film adaptations; says many beautiful books are turned into trash

Rahit Kapur has done wonderful roles so far in various movies like The Making of the Mahatma (1996), Ghulam (1998), Guzaarish (2010), Ki & Ka and (2016) and the recent release Raazi, where he played the father of Alia Bhatt.

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The movie is based on a novel Calling Sehmat by author and ex-navy veteran Harinder Sikka. Raazi is about the life of a young college girl who is asked by her father to spy for India by getting married to a Pakistani army officer. The movie stars Vicky Kaushal in the male lead. When asked if he read the book before resuming shoot for the flick, Rajit said,“I never read the book. For me, the screenplay of the film itself said so much that I never thought of reading the book. I had to see the film to realise Meghna usko kahaan se kahaan leke gayi. I didn’t want to be biased in any way."

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Raazi actor says many book adoptions were turned into trash

It is not the first time that a book was adopted into making a movie.  It all started back in 1996 itself when Guru Dutt’s 1962 classic Sahib, Biwi Aur Ghulam adapted from Bimal Mitra’s Saheb Bibi Golam.

When asked if the adoption of a book into a film is easy, he said,“There’s no hard and fast rule. My first film, Suraj Ka Saatvaan Ghoda (1992), was also based on a book. I remember reading the book and saying, ‘What’s wrong with these people? Mr Shyam Benegal (the director) — Why does he want to make a film, because this book cannot be turned into a film. But after the film got made, I had to take back my words, and I told him ‘You took the film to another level with what you have done.”


He said that “There are too many examples of beautiful books being made into absolute trash. You need to take the essence and add to it, or create your own imagery with what has been written in the original. Sometimes you do it hand-in-glove with the author, sometimes the author says ‘I don’t want to say… You interpret it’. The permutations and combinations are tremendous, and depend from case to case.”

In the talk, he even showered praises on his co-star Alia Bhatt, who played his tender but brave, selfless, daughter Sehmat. He said 'When you are working with somebody like her, you don’t need words to express things.'

by Vijay Singh | Mon, May 28 - 12:49 PM

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