Sunday, March 28, 2010

The Birth of Joker

Hi all,

Himani asked me how was "Joker" conceived. So, here we go....

Mayank Sharma, my Associate Director and a dear friend, has been with me a long time and we were generally brain storming for a subject that we would like to do.

I was walking in the living room. Pacing up and down. I remember that it took 5 paces to get the idea for the first half of the film and another 5 paces for the second half. It was just like that. Eureka... I shared the thought with Mayank and he said it works.

The first few drafts had the Heroine being introduced at the Interval point. Only later we introduced her in the 3rd scene.

Then we started writing, and writing and writing. It took a total of 13 drafts of the screenplay and 6 years to get the final screenplay that we were happy with.

Sameer Joshi, a competent writer and friend was involved in the earlier versions. By the 12th draft we were fed up. It was an overdose of Joker for us and we had what is known as the Writer's Block.

We were stuck. We knew that the screenplay was good, but not good enough, but we could not write more.

That is when we took a break... A loooong break.

I struggled to get the film made. I met many known Actors and narrated the story to them. Most liked it but did not agree to do the film. Maybe because they had no faith in a new director or maybe they actually did not like the subject but were being polite by telling me that it is a good story.

I could never manage to meet any BIG star, it seems impossible to meet them directly. One has to meet people who work for them and pass through the levels. These people are more interested in Directors who have a proven track record, so a new director is not of much value.

I did manage to narrate the story to Mr. Aamir Khan. He is a great listener, very polite and a down to earth guy. He declined to do the film as he was making "Taare Zameen Par" which involved kids and he had plans of "Gajini" and others. He had no time for "Joker" but he appreciated the effort which was a huge moral boost to me even though I was not even close to making the film.

Then there were others. People wanted to buy the script off me. They said that just because I write well does not mean that I can make a film. I was offered a huge amount of money. Yes, I was tempted but I could not let it go. I was living with "Joker" day and night. That is when I decided, either I will make the film or take the story to my grave.

After 6 years I gave up. I went to London and a dear friend there promised me a job. My family agreed to move where ever we could make a living. In India all I could do was think of making movies. I knew I was born for making movies but I knew that, the industry did not and no one cared.

My brother, Ajay Tuli was the only support I had, he believed in me from day one and he tried as well, but it never worked out.

Then one day, I was sitting in a park in London, feeding the ducks and the geese, waiting for my work papers to be processed. I was in deep thought. I said to myself, here I am, ready to take up a job and fulfill someone's dream. We only live once, why should I not dedicate my life to fulfill my own dream, if I don't do that who else will???

The decision was made. I have to go back to India and continue to struggle.

Once I was back. Mr. Sunil Thadani (Co-Producer of Joker) and an old friend happened to narrate the idea of Joker to Rajeev Khandelwal who loved it instantly. I was called and Rajeev and me met the very next day and viola. The film was happening.

Sameer Arora (a very good writer) was brought in for the final draft. With renewed vigor and zest, Sameer, Mayank and myself wrote the 13th draft which is what we are shooting.

This was the birth of "Joker" of course there are many more details that will be shared at a later date. I don't want to go on and on.

Till then.


Vikram Tuli

Sunday, March 21, 2010


Hi all.
I know that, for now, there is noone to see this blog; but it is a matter of time before I have some followers.

I do intend to update my blogs periodically.

The question is 'Who am I writing for?'
Is it for me? Is it for you? or Is it for us?

I expect it to be for us. This, sharing of information, exchange of opinions, debate (if so) on issues, should benifit both of us as people. We must use this platform to grow as people and enrich our minds.

That should be the ultimate goal. There is much to share.

We are nothing else but 'our experiences and our belief systems'.

I have experienced all strata of society, been there, done that. As I am sure you have as well.

So, off to a new beginning.
More later.

Vikram Tuli