A boy named Cajetan

Posted: August 25, 2009 by moifightclub in bollywood, cast & crew, cinema, News, Story / Plot / Synopsis, writing
Tags: , , , , , ,

Cajetan Boy 2If you have seen Vishal Bhardwaj’s Kaminey, you must have noticed the name Cajetan Boy in the opening credits of the film. We have been trying to google more about him but no luck. Timeout Mumbai has done a small piece on him, the writer on whose story Kaminey is based.

Vishal met him at the Mira Nair’s Maisha Filmlab where he had gone as a mentor. He liked Cajetan’s story Roho and later on bought the rights. You can read the feature here or scroll down…

Vishal Bhardwaj’s Kaminey explores a singe day in the lives of identical twins from Dharavi, but the story was actually born an ocean away. The plot was created by Cajetan Boy, a writer and short-film director from Nairobi, whom Bhardwaj met in Kampala in 2005. “I am excited to see how it will be handled by an experienced and renowned director working with a budget,” Boy told Time Out in an email interview.

In Kaminey, Shahid Kapur plays twins who can be told apart by their particular speech impediments. The twins, Charlie and Guddu, get embroiled with a gangster (played by Taare Zameen Par writer Amole Gupte) and spend the course of the movie trying to save their skins. The speech impediments are Bhardwaj’s innovation, as is the gangster angle.

Boy said his story, titled Roho (which means soul) was about identical twins from Kibera in Nairobi, Kenya’s biggest slum. There are no gangsters in the original plot. “The movie was initially set in extreme poverty,” Boy said. “I set out to show that there is a direct link between crime and poverty; crime and the police; crime and the affluent. I set to show that the system conspires to have poverty.”

Boy said he wrote the story, the screen treatment as well as one draft of the script. He said he had mixed feelings about selling the story to Bhardwaj. The director told the Mumbai Mirror that he bought the idea from Boy for $4,000, or just under Rs 2 lakh. Boy describes himself as a “passionate movie maker who is determined to make Kenyan movies with or without a budget – mostly we have none”. Kaminey’s rumoured Rs 44 crore budget will probably come as something of a shock to him. 

Boy is the Products Development Leader for Et Cetera Productions, a film and television production house. He has written one-act and full-length plays, including Benta, which was made into a movie in 2006, as well as the screenplays of All Girls Together, a social drama, and Backlash, which he described as “an HIV/AIDS epic exploring culture and the pandemic”. He met Bhardwaj at a scriptwriting workshop in Kampala organised by Maisha, the filmmaking centre set up by Mira Nair in 2004. “I am hopeful that I will get a visible credit that will put me on the map as a writer,” Boy said. “So far all the material I have seen on the net makes no mention of Maisha or me – maybe I am not checking in the right place.”

Boy’s concerns as a writer are about “poverty, crime and classes – the links between them and how each preys on the other”. He said he was also keen to accurately portray the lives of those who live on the margins of society. “I am concerned with how to make people look at what they take for granted (slums, prostitutes, thieves, drug dealers etc), accept their existence and question why these things exist,” he said.

The Kenyan writer hasn’t watched many Hindi films, but the few he has seen have impressed him. “Those that I have watched thrill me with the intensity of the characters, the beauty of the picture and the ability to make mundane even ugly scenarios and locations cinematically beautiful,” Boy said.

Comments
  1. gina says:

    Interesting. I liked the film but then many people love Vishal Bhardwaj’s cinema.

  2. rohit says:

    i loved both movie as well as screenplay im a big fan of vishal bhardhwal from the day i saw makdee

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