By Subhash K Jha
First we had British litterateur Thomas Hardy's 19th century masterpiece Tess being trans-located into Rajasthan in Michael Winterbottom's new movie adaptation Trishna.
And if Trishna would be hard to
recognize as being inspired by the Hardy novel, we now have news of Michael Winterbottom's adaptation being forcibly moved even further away from its source material in the dubbed Hindi version of Trishna which
releases in India in July.
A reliable source informs that the Indian distributors of Trishna intend to add an item song to the British director's screen version of the Tess saga.
Says the source close to the project, "The film's Indian distributors think Trishna is too artistic. But it also has the makings of a great masala film. Freida Pinto plays a kind of Mother India who's tossed from one cruel
circumstance to another.
Women audiences in India would weep buckets over the ablaa naari (hapless woman) act of Freida. And also, let's not overlook the fact, the the male audience is also in for a treat.
Freida has done some of the most graphic and lingering love-making scenes in the history of films based India. So we see a lot of potential for Trishna in the Indian market. "
To enhance and boost the film's boxoffice potential we hear the Indian distributors have decided to add an item song by Huma Qureshi in the Hindi version of Trishna.
Qureshi is the leading lady of Anurag Kashyap's much talked-about forthcoming film Gangs Of Wasseypur. Interestingly Anurag also has cameo appearance in Trishna.
Apparently the situation for the item song is interwoven into the plot.
Says the informed source, "Freida plays a wannabe Bollywood actress in Bollywood. In a sequence she visits a studio to meet director Anurag Kashyap and his wife Kalki. That's where the item song will come in. "
When contacted Sunil Bohra who is Trishna's Indian producer did not try to deny the artistic liberties planned to be taken with Thomas Hardy and Michael Winterbottom.
Says Bohra, "Yes, we're going to have an item song in the Hindi version of Trishna. There's an ideal situation for it in the film when the heroine goes to meet a director. The item song entitled Maintenance meri
maintenance is filmed on Huma Quereshi. Ganesh Acharya has choreographed it. It will get our audiences repeatedly into the theatres to watch the film. "
When asked what the Trishna director would think of the tantalizing embellishment to his artistry, Bohra was nonchalant.
"It's not as if the situation for the item song is not there in the film. In fact we're
also going to change the posters of Trishna for the Indian release. The international posters are much too abstract. We're planning something far more desi and eye-catching. "
Bohra also expressed his apprehensions about the love-making scenes. "I can tell you, Freida's love-making scenes in Trishna would set the screen on fire. I am only worried about our censorboard. "
We're also worried about Freida's response to Ms Qureshi stealing some of the thunder.