For writer-director Vishal Bharadwaj, Gulzar is a father figure and Gulzar's daughter Meghna the kid sister he never had. And Vishal is more than just impressed with her work in the episodic film Dus Kahaniyaan.
"Bosky (Meghna) has done me proud. I'm so happy by her work in Dus Kahaniyaan (she has directed the story Pooranmashi in the film). In fact, I'm willing to produce a film for her," Vishal told IANS.
He admires Bosky for the finesse with which she rendered literature on celluloid.
"In fact, I took up Shakespeare for Omkara because I didn't have the guts to write an original screenplay, nor did I want to pick up a foreign DVD. I don't know why. But in our country literature is considered boring and preachy."
Vishal is all for episodic storytelling. "I've just made a short-film Blood Brothers for Mira Nair. And believe me it was an exhilarating challenge.
"I've also made a feature film, The Blue Umbrella, from a short story. As a feature film is stretching it a bit, I'd rather make short films from short stories as Sanjay Gupta (director of Dus Kahaniyaan) has done. In fact, if Sanjay makes a sequel I'd love to be part of it."
Vishal gets a little nostalgic about the short story format.
<b1>"I started my career as filmmaker after being inspired by (Krzysztof) Kieslowski's short story collection Dekalog. It was Gulzar saab who introduced me to those 10 short films. Even today we watch them together whenever we're low...that's why I love Dus Kahaniyaan.
"Hats off to Sanjay for getting the stars to give clout to his experiment. I loved Matrimony and Bosky's Pooranmashi," he said.
Interestingly Vishal also features in Dus Kahaniyan.
"I've written the story High on the Highway featuring Jimmy Shergill and Masumeh. I made it for Zee TV with Ashish Vidyarthi and Shefali Shah. This was the first story I had ever written."
And how did it land up as part of Dus Kahaaniyan?
"Hansal Mehta (who directs the story in the film) is a dear friend. I was thrilled when he wanted to make the film.
"I wanted to rewrite the screenplay since it was written 15 years ago. But before I knew it, Hansal had already shot the story. I was surprised when my name appeared on the posters. But Hansal is a friend and I'm glad he did it...though I must admit if I had to remake the same story now I'd do it differently. But I'm happy with what he has done with my story."
He lights up at the impact his own short film on AIDS is having.
"'Blood Brothers' was great fun to make. I'd love to do more short films. So many things have to be said in such a short span of time, like in an ad film. It takes the energy of a full feature film. Blood Brothers took up the whole of last year. It's my most mature work to date. In fact, I had offered to make a segment of Darna Manaa Hai for Ram Gopal Varma."