Malayalam novelist moves court to get back film rights of ‘Randamoozham’
Tired of waiting for his classic novel to be made into a film, eminent Malayalam writer M.T. Vasudevan Nair decided to ask for the film rights back.
He approached the Kozhikode Munsiff court in Kerala, and on Thursday, it barred director V.A. Shrikumar Menon from making a film on Mr. Nair’s novel, Randamoozham (Second Turn) until further orders.
The Jnanpith-winning author filed the case when Mr. Menon’s film project failed to take off even four years after he had sold him the rights to the script.
“The director has not been able to start the shoot of the film so far. So I filed a case in the court demanding that I get the rights back,” Mr. Nair told The Media at his residence.
“Though the contractual obligation of making the film was long over, I had waited for another year, that means four in all. I was getting fed up.”
Mr. Nair said that he was tired of answering people’s questions about the filming of Randamoozham. This isn’t surprising given the popularity of the novel – a retelling of the Mahabharata from Bhima’s point of view. The novelist said he hadn’t decided what he would do with the script of Randamoozhamonce its rights reverted to him.
“I am in no hurry,” he said. “I am not particular that Randamoozham should be turned into a film. It has reached so many people as a novel. Now it is into its 60th edition.”
Mr. Menon had announced that Randamoozham would be made in different languages and that the Indian-born, UAE-based businessman B.R. Shetty would produce it on a major budget of ₹1,000 crore.
In a Facebook post, Mr. Menon expressed confidence that he would be able to sort out any differences with Mr Nair.
“I used to keep M.T. informed about the progress earlier, but I could not for the past few weeks as I got busy with the post production work of [my maiden film] Odiyan,” the adman-turned-director explained. “I understand that he might have had concerns because of that. I am going to meet him and apologise for that.”
He said that he had promised that that he would bring out Randamoozham as a film that would win international acclaim.
“I don’t have any doubt about it since I have a producer like B.R. Shetty with me. Both of us had, in fact, toured the United States last month regarding business plans for the film,” he said. “The pre-production work is in the final stage. An official announcement would be made soon. Everything will be in place for us to be able to begin the shooting in July next year.”