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Madhur reacts on SLUMDOG MILLIONAIRE v/s TRAFFIC SIGNAL comparison

February 3, 2009 6:03:09 PM IST
Sampurn, Bollywood Trade News Network
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Danny Boyle is getting international recognition for SLUMDOG MILLIONAIRE for last couple of months. And now with close to a dozen odd nominations for Oscars, the film is all set to zoom further up in the popularity charts. Meanwhile, quite a few movie buffs who have seen the movie can't help but compare a few incidents/characters as well as the setting of the film with Bollywood's own TRAFFIC SIGNAL.

The film was a reasonable success in India and had also fetched a National Award for its director Madhur Bhandarkar. Still, it didn't quite reach the kind of heights overseas as its British counterpart. Does Madhur Bhandarkar feel bitter about the fact that his film, which released before SLUMDOG MILLIONAIRE, was restricted to Indian audience? Isn't he aware about the fact that the basic ambience and mood of the two films do share a striking resemblance?

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''Well, obviously I won't deny that this did strike my mind. TRAFFIC SIGNAL did have a similar ambience and mood to it as it got into slum life, beggars, children doing petty jobs for survival, con men etc. Lot of people who have seen the film have come to me and said so. Also, since it was from an insider's point of view, I guess most of the incidents in TRAFFIC SIGNAL were relatable to Indian audience. No one said a word about anything in the film being fake'', says Madhur Bhandarkar.

''Of course, there is nothing to take away from the Danny Boyle's film though. I haven't seen it but I am sure he must have done something extraordinary which is getting it worldwide mileage and recognition'', Madhur adds with utmost honesty.

A key part of the film's narrative sees children being amputated for the purpose of begging. Now that's something that has seen been seen in detail in TRAFFIC SIGNAL as well. Also, children from slums being the center of attraction in SLUMDOG MILLIONAIRE isn't something that's new. In Madhur's film, Kunal Khemu was perhaps a mix of the good and bad boys, which otherwise is played by separate characters (Jamaal and Salim) in SLUMDOG MILLIONAIRE.

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''I have been told about these similarities but I would rather watch the movie first before I comment. At the end of the day, all of it is a reality and it's possible for two people to share similar ideas when they are making the movie in a similar setting'', says Madhur whose next is set in jail.

Doesn't he regret the fact that Danny Boyle is closer to Oscars now while he was deprived of all the global attention?

He smiles, ''Well, if Danny Boyle does get an Oscar for SLUMDOG MILLIONAIRE then great, I wish him luck. I have my own National Award for TRAFFIC SIGNAL and that by itself is good enough for me.''

''May be if TRAFFIC SIGNAL had as fantastic a score as the one that Rahman provided for SLUMDOG MILLIONAIRE, it too may have fetched international recognition'', quips Madhur.

- view SLUMDOG MILLIONAIRE movie stills


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