‘Slumdog Millionaire’ racing ahead to the Oscar

"I cannot thank you all enough for allowing us to be guests in your country for over two years. It is like coming full circle,” smiled Danny Boyle,52,director of 'Slumdog Millionaire' in Delhi,yesterday,for the film’s promotion ahead of its release in India tomorrow.

Written by Debesh Banerjee | Published:January 22, 2009 12:03 pm

Ahead of Slumdog Millionaire’s India release tomorrow,the cast dropped in at the Capital

I cannot thank you all enough for allowing us to be guests in your country for over two years. It is like coming full circle,” smiled Danny Boyle,52,director of Slumdog Millionaire in Delhi,yesterday,for the film’s promotion ahead of its release in India tomorrow. After the overwhelming response to the film at the Golden Globes in LA where they won four awards just last week,the Slumdog… team gathered at Delhi’s Taj Man Singh Hotel for an interaction with the media.

Boyle,looking upbeat and confident in a beige jacket and trousers,is enthusiastic about the release in Hindi as well,’Slumdog Crorepati’. “This story is like a fairy tale and everyone loves a good fairy tale. But at the same time it is rooted in reality and that is where its appeal lies,” he said. Boyle was accompanied by the entire cast,Anil Kapoor,Irrfan Khan,the casting director Loveleen Tandon and Dev Patel. “I have grown up watching Danny Boyle films and desperately wanted this project. Before this,I had only done a teen drama for British TV,” said Patel,18,the protagonist,Jamal in the movie.

The fact that the film does not boast of any heavyweight actors except Anil Kapoor and Irrfan Khan is its greatest achievement,according to Boyle. “Mumbai is the real star in the film. In contrast to the energy and commotion of the streets of Mumbai,there is another world that almost envelopes the city everywhere you go. It is this story,of a boy who triumphs out of tragic circumstances,that I have tried to capture,” added Boyle,referring to his own struggling childhood in a British family.

For a film which is adapted from author Vikas Swarup’s novel Q and A,the producer Christian Colson felt it was a compelling story of hope that needed to be shared on the silver screen. Anil Kapoor who plays Prem,the TV show host in the film,played down the recent controversy about how poverty in India,sells. “Danny has remained true to the script. And we should not be defensive about the reality,” he argued. Freida Pinto who plays Latika,in the film,remained silent for most of the interaction,looking elegant and pretty in a blue dress. She could not,however,stop praising Danny Boyle. “When I received an opportunity to be a part of the film,I knew could not leave it. So I auditioned for six months until I finally bagged the role,” said Pinto,who Boyle described as having the most important role. “The importance of Latika in the film is her absence,” explained Boyle,who says he would love to make a dark thriller next,based in Mumbai.

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