Nizamuddin cats and Mani Ratnam
Date: 8/2/2012 3:15:00 PM
Two close friends, who are also two of my favourite writers (and the fandom preceded the friendship), have books coming out very soon. Presenting:
The Wildings, by Nilanjana S Roy (some information and an excerpt here; available for pre-order on Flipkart)
Conversations with Mani Ratnam, by Baradwaj Rangan
I haven’t read Nilanjana’s book yet but hope to soon – more on it in a later post. I have read most of Baradwaj’s manuscript, and instead of gushing on mindlessly as I’m prone to doing, I’ll say just this: it holds up extremely well in comparison with the two best conversations-with-directors books I have read: Bogdanovich on Orson Welles and Truffaut-Hitchcock. When Baradwaj first told me the book was going to be almost entirely in the Q&A format, I had...not misgivings but a tinge of regret, because I’m such a fan of his flowing writing. But he’s achieved something very special here: he has got Mani Ratnam to open up about a lot of things, moderated a series of fascinating conversations (and these ARE conversations between two people who are very knowledgeable about film – not standard-issue “interviews” where Serf asks Celebrity a line of vapid questions) - and most tricky of all, he has structured those sessions in such a way that a reader gets a sense of drama as well as chronology. I was riveted even by the discussions about the early Ratnam films that I haven’t seen.
(Okay, so I did gush on mindlessly. Won’t apologise for it though. Do keep an eye out for both books.)