Veteran Bollywood actor and Member of Parliament, Shatrughan Sinha, was interviewed by Rachel Dwyer about his recent biography, Anything But Khamosh, written by Bharathi S. Pradhan. As described in the book, Sinha was one of the earliest FTII graduates to enter the film industry without any support from an influential person. Remarkably, he was also the first student to be selected to… Read more »

Rookie Writer Meets a Literary Hero: Amish Tripathi

Amish Tripathi is a crackling storyteller, whose Shiva Trilogy make thrilling use of religious symbolism and profound philosophies. The novels – The Immortals of the Meluha (2010), The Secret of the Nagas (2011) and The Oath of the Vayuputras (2013) – made Tripathi an overnight publishing phenomenon, with 2 million copies in print, and translated… Read more »

Dance Like a Man: Refiguring Masculinity

A heated discussion erupted in the chilly morning on the Rajnigandha Front Lawn, as a distinguished and diverse panel debated gender constructs and questioned typical masculine stereotypes. Everyone present was itching to contribute to this dynamic conversation about male values and roles, male stress, and the changing power dynamics between the sexes. Articulate moderator Ashok Ferrey launched the discussion… Read more »

Hamlet’s Dilemma

The works of William Shakespeare epitomize timelessness. This lively session explored the politics, relevance and representation of Shakespeare’s masterpiece Hamlet, written over 400 years ago, in the light of changing contexts and conditions of the world in the 21st century. Moderator Suhel Seth commenced the session by asking why Shakespeare’s presence persists like an enigma of time in contemporary minds. Acclaimed cinematic figure Vishal Bharadwaj, who resurrected Shakespeare for Indian… Read more »

Mujhe Jeene Do: Conversations With Waheeda Rehman

Widely considered to be the most enduringly beautiful and gifted actress of her time, Waheeda Rehman has captured the imagination of Indian cinema lovers for 60 years now. It was no surprise that her session at the ZEE Jaipur Literature Festival was hugely crowded in spite of the bad weather. Rehman was nostalgic about her early Bollywood years, saying that… Read more »

Taare Zameen Par

The Bollywood flavour at this year’s ZEE Jaipur Literature Festival 2015 was given wings today by writer, poet, lyricist, screenwriter and advertising guru Prasoon Joshi. Poet and musicologist Yatindra Mishra asked Joshi if he played with words or if words played with him. Joshi’s response was poetry in itself: ‘I walk on the path of poetry holding… Read more »

And Then One Day

Crowds had already gathered on the Rajnigandha Front Lawns half an hour before the event was due to start. This time, it wasn’t Naseeruddin Shah the actor they were waiting for, but the Naseeruddin Shah the writer. Nasreen Munni Kabir introduced the film star by saying that we are here to talk about the journey from ‘have you seen his amazing film’… Read more »

Bollywood Nation: Vamsee Juluri, Meghnad Desai, Irrfan Khan, Moderated By Rupleena Bose

Bollywood is probably our most popular export, in close competition with chicken tikka. Our jhatkas and tumkas have made it onto So You Think You Can Dance, we are inherently dramatic as a people: we are undeniably a Bollywood Nation and proud of it! And this was an out and out Bollywood session, with the eccentric Lord Meghnad Desai breaking into song repeatedly, and… Read more »