Dear MS. Kapoor
It came to my attention recently through the myriad news articles circulating the web these days that you are planning an Indian remake of the legendary Game of Thrones series, and being a die-hard fan of the show – I have strong objections to what you plan to undertake. The fact that you are even thinking about this is both laughable and outrageous at the same time!
The word ‘Legendary’ comes to mind, though words will certainly not do justice to the masterpiece that this show is, created by David Benioff and D.B. Weiss in association with HBO and inspired by the epic and unparalleled fantasy/fiction story-telling and writing skills of the master himself – the brilliant mind of George R. Martin. The characters, names, outfits, dialogues – the sheer vision and creative genius that Martin, Benioff and Weiss have lent to the House of Stark, Lannister, Targaryen, Baratheon and all the others in the Seven Kingdoms are testimony to their artistic brilliance. I am presuming of course, Ms. Kapoor that if you are planning to recreate this show, you have obviously watched and/or are watching the original series too. And if you are watching it, then you are very well aware of the mountain that lies ahead of you to climb to reach anywhere near the brilliance and magic this show has managed to cook up and spread like ‘wildfire‘ (pun intended), a show that has very quickly become the number one watched show worldwide today.
No offence to you Ms. Kapoor – you are a very successful, established producer, director both on the big and small screens and the powerhouse you have created in the Hindi daily prime time soaps space needs no introduction. Every mother, grandmother, aunt and so forth drops everything they are doing as soon as the clock strikes ‘Saas-Bahu o clock’ and are glued to their TV screens until the last dramatic, jaw-dropping scene is repeated for the tenth time in a minute. The Rana Prataps and what nots that seem to float your unshakeable boat – regressive stories, time travel and melodrama seem to be your forte – have worked wonders for you, whilst on the big screen you seem to be a fan of horror, sex, scandal and….more sex-inspired works, apparently! I also read somewhere that you plan to march through the censor board demons and actually build on the stereotype you have created for yourself – to create movies and content without censorship – full frontal nudity and sex scenes!
While I admire your bold, indelible spirit, I am gravely concerned about your attempting to channel all this ‘saas-bahu high’ inspired, dare-to-do energy towards such a monumentally challenging, intricately woven and impeccably sculpted, acted and delivered show as The Game of Thrones. You see, to think that just because you were able to make a movie on a leaked sex tape and a few others that had sexual innuendos and vulgarity, that you are now equipped and able to recreate for an entirely different audience – a culturally conservative audience that raises eyebrows and voices at some tiny bit of skin show – an Indianised version of the show named ‘Rani Mahal’ featuring your star performer Sakshi Tanwar as Daenarys Targaryan, supposedly, is just preposterous, Ms. Kapoor! And very, very ambitious.
Explicit scenes with full nudity, extreme violence, heads-rolling-off-bodies with blood and sound effects to match the transparent, uncensored scenes of turmoil and battle can not possibly be replicated by Indian producers unless you are able to maintain this uncensored nature of the show which, you and I both know isn’t a possibility in India and even if you did manage to undermine the censor board and power through, the Indian audience will raise hell and shut you down. And then there are the dragons, that I read you are planning to leave out completely. It’s already sounding like a lost cause, isn’t it?
So why not just do what you do best and make another Sakshi Tanwar starrer daily soap if you must and leave the ‘Throning‘ element out of it completely? (Preferably a little more new age and realistic this time?)
I am an Indian just like you, Ms. Kapoor and by no means do I think you are not capable of creating or recreating excellence if you put your mind to it. And of course, I am sure you have already started shooting for this project and plan to go through with it and you will. My only hope, and I know I speak for all the sincere, Indian GoT fans out there – is that you are fully aware of what you are getting into – a show like Game of Thrones is not the usual, run of the mill, household drama series that one can easily recreate or even a Sholay or Agneepath or any of the other great classics which have been and continue to be recreated today and have a field day at the box office with some great performances. (And even these recreations haven’t done justice to the originals and never really will). No, The Game of Thrones is one of those irreplaceable one-time magical creations that should be left to be just that – a one time masterpiece created by the one true artist whose works can not be recreated to that same level of perfection and beauty, no matter how many other artists try.
So, Ms, Kapoor, if I were you, I would rethink this project and recognize that Ekta Kapoor can only excel in what Ekta Kapoor does best and stick to doing that. Leave other legendary works like Game of Thrones in the hands of their own creators. Some of my favorites from YOUR creations were ‘The Dirty Picture’, ‘Once Upon a Time in Mumbai’, ‘Shootout at Lokhandwala’, ‘Shaadi ke Side Effects’….and I hope we see more such great, entertaining cinema from you in the future too. But I honestly and earnestly appeal to you to glance into the future for a minute and recognize that a GoT remake will not feature as one of your better decisions.
There are many fakes but only one original masterpiece. And true prudence lies within those who can accept that.
My favorite character in the show – the witty and intelligent dwarf – Tyrion Lannister once said, “I have a realistic grasp of my own strengths and weaknesses. My mind is my weapon.”
Words to ponder, Ms. Kapoor?