Hindi movie expert Diptakirti Chaudhuri’s tome has enough trivia to fuel the festive days ahead
WHAT does marketing professional and freelance writer Diptakirti Chaudhuri know about Hindi cinema that we don’t? Well, read his big book of trivia and you’ll agree that the man has supplied the perfect accessory for the heady days ahead, from Diwali onwards. After all, we Indians have an endless passion for all things Bollywood and cricket. Incidentally, Chaudhuri had a book on cricket before this, as well as a smaller book of filmi trivia. The discussions that ensued online sparked Bollybook, which was launched earlier this month. Chaudhuri, 40, a marketing professional by day, says he is fortunate to count quizzers and quizmasters as his friends. That, together with his mother’s collection of old film magazines, and hours spent on YouTube revisiting a movie, resulted in this book.
Bold and the silent
With 19 sections devoted to topics like filmi pets, phones, ghosts in non-horror movies, and half-time heroes – appearances at the interval point, for the curious – there are speedy quizzes too. Like the one on quirky credits or star names or popular films featuring a hero named Vijay! Skirting past the obvious like ‘heroes playing police officers’ he goes with women police officers, spies and bodyguards in leading roles instead. Obsessed with lists, Chaudhuri says they make it easier to spark a debate. For instance, how often will you find two people agreeing on Amitabh Bachchan’s top five movies? Talking about Big B, the writer chooses to give the famed baritone a rest and focus on his silent scenes for a change – from Anand to Deewar, Don, Kaala Patthar and Sholay. And in case you think it all sweetness and light, he presents a nice selection of thieves, ‘lady villains,’ politicians and diseases. There are 35 iconic Amul ad campaigns featuring Bollywood – from new releases like ‘Utterly butterly de de. Humul’ referring to Bachchan’s Hum, and the song, Jumma chumma de de, which burrowed into our heads years ago, to obituaries like ‘Mogambo…dukh hua’ when Amrish Puri died, borrowing from his famous line in Mr India.
No movie spared
Chaudhuri, who admits to being a fan of Mithun Chakraborty’s early films like Disco Dancer, has managed to squeeze in references to movies in the 40s, right up to the recent Humshakals. And just in case you think he left out the sleaze, well there are top ‘towel and swimsuit’ scenes. The book is likely to be a guilty pleasure for us moviegoers and the good news is, a game is being planned as well.
– Published by Penguin Book, available at leading stores for `499
— Team Indulge