Millions of us all over of this country including me as an audience feel the impact of this man's phenomenon, power, presence and persona which has now completed 75 surprising years. Never intending to be a star who limits himself to the travails and tribulations of the roles of a familiar image, he illustrated with the sort of stupefying brilliance, magnetism and charisma beneath the charming front, his febrile and ferocious ability to play off every character with a ruthless premeditation. The startling roles emanated strong currents that came to the surface of Indian Cinema with unlimited yet self tempered force. His daring enlarged the scope and deepened the meaning of the canvas of Indian film. But who is Amitabh Bachhan - the hero that even at 75 still continues to be a hero unlike nobody else? What made him last and more importantly, what made him the first?
Each time I think of him, I am more and more swept away by the power of his close ups and eyes as opposed to traditionally showing off the abs, his nuanced gestures which highly heighten the dramatic reality of fiction, his minimal yet highly powerful dialogue and lines which outline the legendary characterizations, his explosive persona harnessed with a subtle and simmering energy as opposed to over the top performances, etc. To say the least no scene or star in Indian Cinema will parallel the creeping close-up of his signifying suggestions of any character's emotional reserves. Such is the power of his gripping and compulsively watchable presence. But his heroism as I understood is not just about the physical aspects, it is about his inherent intensity in demonstrating it. I believe that this strength comes from the fact that no one has the strength to dispirit or tone down or unfaithfully overlook his performance even if they try to do it deliberately and that's why he is still standing rock solid despite the subject matters' cinematic balance and their results.
He as a piece of art in all possible ways is the greatest opportunity that yields the nearest possibility to achieve the creative superiority for many writers, storytellers and film makers. Such is the intensity of his presence that there's a godlike might in his behavior, silence, and fetishistic portraits which I’m supremely lucky of having the opportunity of writing and creating once even after he is portrayed by different writers and directors in different ways. So what motivated me to write Sarkar 3 is the temptation to see Mr. Amitabh Bachchan undo and then outdo what has been done by the heroes of his previous films. The mythological mystique, the physical audacity, the grace, and the instinct he possesses have inspired precisely the right amount of awe in me in creating the legendary Sarkar character.
It's another story if I have succeeded in doing it but he accepted my work and that's more than success. He said, “This screenplay is undoubtedly the most superior, the most dynamic so far in the series, and that most importantly it is closest to what he has been able to relate to as the actor who played it two times in Sarkar series”. Overwhelmed by this response, I started writing an SMS which later turned into a long love letter.
Here are some excerpts
Sarkar, It goes without saying that the true value of any piece of art can only be from an individual's perception and in my perception, you're not an artist but art in its uniqueness. Your presence whether it's physical or emotional moves me so profoundly. For me you are the only hero who spoke with the actions, whose performances took me on never before emotionally charged and exhilarating rides, whose characters excelled far beyond the films. Your hero is always an enigmatic and a reserved individual who lived by his very distinctive code with a core that is the ultimate testimony to the power, the will to fight, and the courage to stand against evil with a sense of justice and a sense of danger of a character only Amitabh Bachchan can bring. It is this philosophy of his life that drives his power into both the professional and personal lives of his and his followers in such a beautiful way that he both lives and conducts the lives of many others.
This understanding of mine is not limited to your character's power, dynamism, aggression, charisma, larger than life emotions, aura, but it is also aimed at the ultimate showcasing of your quiet, volcanic power which gave me goosebumps when I was a kid watching your movies. We as audience over the years have watched all transformations of Amitabh Bachchan -- it was sometimes a burning unexpected mutation, sometimes a metamorphosis, the passage from one state to another. But I want to harness the charm of your intensity with a highly classical approach and present you in a form that no one has ever seen or heard. As I lend your energy of unparalleled intensity, I'll refine the crudities of my artistry and salvage my narrative dignity. I want to take your acceptance of my script as the greatest challenge and the greatest opportunity of my life to redeem myself so as to achieve the ultimate creative superiority.
Having said that, on the whole as in a visual narrative, the story is relevant only as much as it is by design a tool for the express purpose of vastly magnifying the characters. But over the years you transcended the division between the character and the storyline and proved that both are one and have the same meaning because the central story is nothing but the central character's vision. That's why you're the true definition and redefinition of hero and you'll continue to be so.
Love and respect,
P Jaya Kumar,
The writer of Sarkar 3.
(Image Courtesy: FB)