National Award-winning Malayalam director Jayaraj says literature has always been a source of inspiration for him and he wants to adapt more classics following his latest film 'Ottal', which is based on Russian writer Anton Chekhov's short story 'Vanka'.
A multiple recipient of national and state awards, he says literary classics, irrespective of language, culture and time barriers, are treasure troves of endless story threads which can be developed into any number of quality films.
"We generally call a literary work a classic when it stands the test of time. These may have been written decades or centuries ago, but they are relevant in any time or period," Jayaraj told PTI.
"We can adapt them into any social and cultural setting. So, I always approach literature through a filmmaker's perspective," Jayaraj said.
The filmmaker, who has made movies based on William Shakespeare's plays 'Othello' and 'Antony and Cleopatra', said he now wants to bring the English playwright's 'Macbeth' and Russian author Fyodor Dostoyevsky's 'The Brothers Karamazov' alive on the big screen.
"My films 'Kaliyattam' and 'Kannaki' are adapted from Shakespeare's 'Othello' and 'Antony and Cleopatra', respectively. Now I am planning to adapt his Macbeth. I also really want to do Dostoyevsky's 'The Brothers Karamazov'," he said.
'Ottal' bagged the 'best film' tag in the environment conservation category in the recently- announced National Awards.
While 'Vanka', the Russian short story from which the movie has been adapted, revolves around the pangs of nine-year -old Vanka Zhukov, destined to lead the life of a child labourer under a shoemaker in Moscow, 'Ottal' tells the story of Kuttappayi, a child labourer hailing from Kerala and his inseparable bond with his grandfather and nature.
The movie, set in the scenic Kuttanad, also narrates how the boy, destined to work in a fireworks factory away from his near ones, missed his childhood.