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Peepli Live director Anusha Rizvi to adapt Amitav Ghosh’s ‘Sea of Poppies’ into film

By NewsDesk • Published on April 24, 2012

Peepli Live director Anusha Rizvi and co-director Mahmood Farooqui have acquired the rights to make a film on ‘Sea of Poppies’, a book by Amitav Ghosh shortlisted for the Man Booker Prize in 2008.

‘Sea of Poppies’ is the first in what will be the Ibis trilogy on opium wars.

The first draft of the script titled ‘Opium’ was chosen for the Mumbai Mantra – Sundance screenwriters Lab recently held in Lonavala.

The film will be jointly directed by Anusha Rizvi and Mahmood Farooqui and produced under Third World Productions Pvt Ltd. The production company has obtained an eighteen month option on the film rights of ‘Sea of Poppies’.

Amitav Ghosh wrote on his blog: ‘…No less impressive was the skill with which he (Mahmood) and Anusha had woven together the multiple strands of the book, preserving many more than I would have thought possible. To a quite astonishing degree the script also preserved the language of Sea of Poppies – but in some of its most compelling passages the diction is transformed into Bhojpuri!

Listening to the last part of the narrative, where the climactic events unfold in rapid succession, was an unforgettable experience: I found myself marveling, not just at Mahmood’s performance but also at the thought that this story had sprung from my own head.’

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