(my SHORT story)
“See, it’s about a Brahmin boy who is compelled to leave his village due to some problem in his village and home. He goes to the nearby town by a local train. He finds a job in a restaurant…..”
I read out the synopsis of the script I had prepared for the most awaited meeting with the film director.
He frowned and said,
“I don’t like a Brahmin boy to be the protagonist of the movie. My ideology is against it. Let’s make him a lower caste boy.”
“But sir, my script is not about such issues”
“See, issues are always there, you see it or not” he said firmly.
“Ok, agreed” I continued.
“The boy befriends a stray dog in the town and…………….”
“No…” he interrupted. “This is what I am strictly against. I love human beings more than animals. This pet love business, you know, is disgusting. Change it. Let the boy find another….boy or…. girl……. I detest these animal lovers….crazy people”
“But sir, the story….”
“No…nothing doing…My ideology doesn’t permit it” He repeated and got up to light a cigarette caressing his dense beard.
I paused for a while.
It was about to rain and cool breeze came in through the French windows he had kept open. He stood looking out.
On the tea table the leftover of a non vegetarian meal and a half emptied bottle of vodka and the empty glass. His DELL laptop on the bed getting charged. The screen saver in dark magenta displaying the contours of a naked woman.
This is the third person I am discussing the script with. The first one came home to listen to it and gave me all the support to give the script a fine and finishing touch but never responded since then. Whenever I called up, he would talk about another project he is busy scripting and at times artificial pleasantries as if we had never discussed a script. I stopped calling him up. Another one wanted me to mail him the script but gave no reply when I asked for his contact number. I had seen him quite a number of times on television interviews talking about promoting new talents in the industry! And this one, the third one, was all ears when I sent him the synopsis.
“Ok, agreed” I said.
“Continue then” he said without turning back.
“The boy works in a vegetarian restaurant…”
“Hell with it, man” he shouted turning towards me, “you and your vegetarianism… it sucks”
“Sir, it’s difficult to make a change there as the plot’s turning point comes here...”
“NO… no vegetarianism!” he stubbed out the cigarette and poured a glass of vodka, began to sip it lying on the bed leaning against the wall.
I knew that was not all and waited.
“And don’t let the boy go to a nearby town. Let him go to Chennai.”
My “Why?” came out at once. I found no logic and felt like laughing.
“Because I’ve more contacts there. I can make the movie easily there. And, remember, the language won’t be Malayalam. We’ll make it in Tamil”
I was ready to face the brute. Mixed feelings of anger, laughter and pity grew intense in me.
“OK” I said with a nod of dissatisfaction.
“You said the boy has some problem in his village. What is it? Is it something that can’t be solved?” his words slipped.
That is it. I closed the file and put it in my bag.
“Yes sir”, I stood up and said, “I will try to solve that problem. Let me think of it. But I need some time. If I solve the boy’s problem, he needn’t go anywhere…we can also save lot of expense of taking the boy to Chennai and all that, you know…I will get back to you, sir…”
I walked out. The room boy entered and I could hear him shouting at the boy for not getting his shirt ironed.
It was raining when I reached home. I mailed the director another summary of the script, a well edited one:
“No story, No human beings, only ideology. Good bye”_______-Santhosh Kumar kana