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Of facts and fantasy

VIJAY GEORGE

Sunil Parameswaran's offbeat stories are being translated into celluloid.



SPINNER OF YARNS: Sunil Parameswaran.

The life and times of Sunil Parameswaran sounds more intriguing than his stories. The successful self-made businessman is awaiting the release of the films for which he has written the script.

With 11 professional dramas and the script of five Kannada films to his credit, he had a rather late entry into Malayalam films. Why?

"I have never gone around meeting directors to narrate my stories. I was biding my time," he candidly says.

He had shown the novel `Ananthabhadram,' a mystery thriller, to Maniyanpillai Raju before it was submitted for a contest organised by a leading Malayalam daily.

"A few hours later, he called me and told that he would be the producer if it was turned into a film." Two of his scripts - `Ananthabhadram' and `By the People' - are being made into films by Santosh Sivan and Jayaraj respectively. `Bhadrasanam' and `Vellimana,' the novels that followed `Ananthabhadram' will also be made into films soon.

`By the People' narrates the story of an honest police officer who has to under go many trials and tribulations as he does not give in to the whims and fancies of those in power.

Sunil is well known for his stories that are based on the supernatural. "Although science can scale any heights, our people live in a land where faith exists," believes the writer. To him, people form their own versions of God to substantiate the element of faith in their mind.

What is the inspiration for such themes?

"The fables that my grandmother narrated to me when I was a kid was there at the back of mind and that has been a source of my stories. I am an avid reader and in the process, have been frequently asking questions for which I was trying to find the answers myself. Although our legends are rich with stories of yakshis or spirits, they are always shown as women who get killed while pursuing a love affair and wanders around to seek revenge. I have revamped the concept through my novels," he avers.

He says that while he was writing `Ananthabhadram' he had felt the presence of the yakshi and while writing `Bhadrasanam,' snakes were found in his house a couple of times. "Many might find it tough to digest all these, but stranger things happen.

"When one reads a novel, imagination takes wing and the reader tends to identify the settings with the surroundings in which he is comfortable. The reader becomes a director himself and creates a fantasy world that suits his imagination. But in films, we see the filmmaker's perspective and the viewer has to enjoy what is offered to him. Dwelling upon his writing he says, "I don't need a particular place or an atmosphere to write. I am writing a few novels for some of the best selling weeklies in Malayalam. Writing, I feel, should come naturally. It happens when we live in sync with nature."

Sunil prefers not to write a script with a particular star in mind "to suit his image," even if he is asked to. "I regard my honesty as my greatest asset. It has helped me to surge ahead in life," he adds.

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