Streaming giant Netflix on Wednesday announced that they will be adapting Salman Rushdie’s classic novel Midnight’s Children into an original web series. Now, it has also revealed the name of the showrunner for the series. Prominent filmmaker Vishal Bhardwaj has taken up the job of bringing to screen Rushdie’s magnum opus. Apart from being the showrunner, Bhardwaj will also be the executive producer of the Netflix series.
This is not the first time that Vishal Bhardwaj’s name will be associated with the screen adaptation of a classic work of literature. The filmmaker-music director has earlier made films on William Shakespeare’s Macbeth (Maqbool), Othello (Omkara) and Hamlet (Haider). His adaptation of Hamlet, Haider (2014) starring Shahid Kapoor, Tabu and Shraddha Kapoor won the People’s Choice award at the Rome Film Festival.
Talking about his first project on the digital platform, Bhardwaj said, “The opportunity to translate one of the greatest works of literature in a medium that is accessible to millions of people around the world is incredible, and I’m delighted to partner with Netflix in bringing Midnight’s Children to life on screen. I’m confident that taking this quintessentially Indian epic that transcends generations and genres, combined with the production values and creative freedom that Netflix offers, will contribute to an unforgettable series that is Indian at heart and global in reach.”
We’re excited to announce that @VishalBhardwaj will be the showrunner for Midnight’s Children, the series, which will stream exclusively on Netflix.
— Netflix India (@NetflixIndia) November 28, 2018
“Midnight’s Children” follows the life of Saleem Sinai, born on the stroke of midnight on August 15, 1947, the time of India’s independence. His every act is mirrored and magnified in events that sway the course of India’s national affairs; his health and well-being are inextricably bound to those of his nation. He also possesses telepathic powers that link him with India’s 1,000 other “midnight’s children”, all born in that initial hour and endowed with magical gifts.
“The scope and scale of Midnight’s Children can only be translated by a creator with an expansive vision, depth of storytelling, and a nuanced knowledge of bringing characters to life. We couldn’t have imagined anyone other than Vishal Bhardwaj as the showrunner on this series and are honoured that he will steer the project,” Simran Sethi, Director-Creative International Originals for Netflix, said.
The novel Midnight Children was released in 1981 and it won many awards including the 1981 Booker Prize, the Best of the Booker twice – both in 1993 and 2008, and the James Tait Memorial Prize.