If Faiz was alive, he would have written Haider: Vishal Bhardwaj | books | Hindustan Times
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If Faiz was alive, he would have written Haider: Vishal Bhardwaj

The session, which was specifically on Hamlet's dilemma, was directed towards the movie Haider and its aftermath. Clearing the air about sending a strong message to the establishment, Bhardwaj said he only wanted to make one fair movie on Kashmir.

books Updated: Jan 27, 2015 13:33 IST
Subuhi Parvez
Vishal Bhardwaj

Upclose-with-Basharat-Peer

On a rainy evening, a crowd of over 1000 people squeezed into a tent at the Diggi lawns to listen to filmmaker Vishal Bhardwaj and author-scriptwriter Basharat Peer.

The session, which was specifically on Hamlet's dilemma, was directed towards the movie Haider and its aftermath.

"Shakespeare is the most dramatic writer I've ever read. He is timeless. I can live my life on his work," said Bhardwaj.

The director believes that Hamlet is so powerful that it can be adapted in any place in the world.

Peer, the co-writer of the film, added saying: "In the whole Kashmir conflict, the greatest heroes were the unsung doctors in the Valley."

In the film as well, the doctor is seen as a regular man who is operating on militants because he has to save lives. Later, of course, he has his moment of weakness and asks for revenge.

Clearing the air about sending a strong message to the establishment, Bhardwaj said he only wanted to make one fair movie on Kashmir.

"I think Bollywood has been unfair to Kashmir. If this was in Hollywood, 200 good films would have been made by now," he said, "I was actually happy that we got away with so many things."

The questions from the audience were mostly on making a film which was anti-establishment. To which, Peer said, "We didn't make something which never existed. Newspapers have been carrying these reports for a long time now. Go burn those articles and books."

"I have written a book on it few years back. I don't write in Jupiter. Why go after the director who is only saying the truth," he added.

One question from the audience came from Faiz Ahmad Faiz's daughter, Moneeza. She asked Bhardwaj what made him choose Faiz's poetry in the film.

"Who else if not Faiz? Ye guloon mein rang bhare kaha se likha jata? Woh hote toh puri film likhte, gaane likhte," he smiled.

After a light moment, the debate heated up further when a member in the audience asked Peer about what he has to say on not mentioning anything about Pandits from the Valley and accused the makers of being lopsided.

"I didn't want to do tokenism. And it is exactly why I haven't written about Pandits. That is a separate issue and equally important. I could have given 10 minutes to that story in the film but that would have been an insult," said Peer.