Vishal Bhardwaj's 'Midnight's Children' adaptation on hold

Shubha Dubey

Mumbai, Oct 1 (PTI) Filmmaker Vishal Bhardwaj says his upcoming Netflix adaptation of Salman Rushdie's classic novel 'Midnight's Children' has been out on hold.

Bhardwaj was to serve as the showrunner and executive producer on the series and had previously said he is scared to adapt the book.

When asked about the same, Bhardwaj told PTI, 'I was scared but I'm not anymore because the project is not happening now, it's on hold for the time being. I'll start something else, it (the idea) is boiling within.'

The filmmaker has previously adapted famous William Shakespeare plays into films such as 'Maqbool', 'Omkara' and 'Haider' to critical acclaim.

With the digital platform coming in as an alternative to the more traditional theatrical release, Bhardwaj said the times are 'exciting and not scary.'

'There are so many platforms, so many ways of telling a story. Now you can't blame that audience wanted this. You can choose your style to tell your story.

'You want your film to be loved by everybody, that's the challenge. But it cannot happen. You want to make an honest film but whether it'll connect with your target audience is a challenge and will remain for me.'

With mid-budget films like 'Badhaai Ho', 'Andhadhun' getting acclaim and also box office numbers, the idea that a film's story is its biggest star today has been accentuated.

'We are on the right path. Films like 'Badhaai Ho' have done such great business, it's indicating that the time has come where the stories have become stars. It's very exciting for a filmmaker,' Bhardwaj added.

He was speaking at the press conference of Jio MAMI 21st Mumbai Film Festival with Star, of which he's a board member.

The 'Rangoon' director said film festivals hold a great importance in his life as he turned a filmmaker because of them and recalled getting his 'mind blown' after watching Quentin Tarantino's 'Pulp Fiction' at a festival.

'I hold film festivals in very high regard because I learnt my filmmaking from there. If I hadn't been to film festivals, I wouldn't have become a filmmaker. In the early 90s, till the late 90s, the Internet world wasn't exposed.

'I saw 'Pulp Fiction' at festival here and remember a lot of us were together. We all watched it at Liberty theatre and it had such a great impact on all of us—many filmmakers—we all walked till Churchgate station just discussing it. The film blew our mind. It was such a great structural revolution in writing.'

Jio MAMI 21st Mumbai Film Festival with Star will be held from October 17-24. PTI JUR SHD