was here as a part of the five-city 'Landmark Jeffrey Archer Tour'
May 11-19 to promote "Paths of Glory" and scout for
an "ideal director or producer who could very convincingly
and skilfully transform" his novel into a movie.
The novel is based on the real-life story of
George Mallory, who some say was the first person to climb Mount
Everest, the world's highest peak, even before Tenzing Norgay
and Sir Edmund Hillary.
Ignored by Indian filmmakers so far, the 69-year-old
king of racy fiction said he does have some leads in Hollywood.
"I've written the screenplay for 'Paths
of Glory' and Bruce Beresford, whose film 'Driving Miss Daisy'
(1989) won an Oscar, wants to make the film. I'd like to find
a producer, I'd like to find the money...but I'm not having a
lot of luck so far. I'd love to make it," he said, chewing
the ear hooks of his prim glasses in thought.
"We are also talking to a major (in Hollywood)
and in theory they are bidding for it at the moment," added
the writer, who has rehabilitated himself in British high society
after a prison sentence for perverting the course of justice.
Archer, who had been a Conservative MP before
he was jailed, revealed to IANS his plans of a Hollywood-Bollywood
"collaboration" for a film based on "Paths of Glory".
"It's a natural Hollywood-Bollywood film...a
collaboration would be ideal...all natural Hollywood razzmatazz
and you get to go to India. It'd be better to go to Everest than
another mountain," explained the man who has also penned
novels like "Not a Penny More, Not a Penny Less", "Kane
and Abel" and "The Prodigal Daughter".
So will the movie be bilingual?
"No. Not interested. It is an English film.
It is an Englishman we are talking about. We can't have a Hindi-speaking
George Mallory climbing the mountain...when I say of a combination,
I mean you've got here some of the finest equipment and some of
the finest technicians in the world. If I'm going to India and
then going to Everest, wouldn't it be wise to use the technical
skills of Bollywood and the Indian people?" he asked.
Did he follow Bollywood? Archer replied with
a prompt "no". He later acknowledged he had heard of
"Shah Rukh Khan", but admitted complete ignorance about
What are his other plans? Archer has on his plate
a revised version of "Kane and Abel", a collection of
short stories called "And Thereby hangs a Tale" and
an untitled novel.