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Indian Shakespeares on Screen

Indian Shakespeares on Screen

27- 30 April 2016

A Festival of Talks, Film Workshops and Movie Memorabilia at Asia House, London 27 - 29 April

Screenings with Q&A: Vishal Bhardwaj's celebrated Shakespeare trilogy Maqbool, Omkara, Haider at the British Film Institute, London 29 - 30 April

For tickets and full programme information: Indian Shakespeares on Screen

Keynote panel: Vishal Bhardwaj and his scriptwriters in discussion

  • Vishal Bhardwaj, Director: Maqbool, Omkara, Haider.
  • Abbas Tyrewala (Maqbool, 2004)
  • Robin Bhatt and Abhishek Chaubey (Omkara, 2006)
  • Basharat Peer (Haider, 2014)

Indian Shakespeares on stage have garnered the increasing attention of academics both Western and Eastern, yet local and regional screen versions continue to be largely overlooked within the scope of Shakespeare on film. It has been a decade since the publication of India's Shakespeare: Translation, Interpretation and Performance (2005), in which Poonam Trivedi observes that despite the seven hundred million speakers of different Indian languages worldwide, Shakespeare's impact on the theatre and films in the languages has yet to be accorded the critical attention it merits.

In 2014, we hosted a one-day conference in London to discuss the relationship between Shakespeare and Hindi cinema/ Bollywood, the world's largest cinema industry. In 2016, we seek to widen this discussion to include the relationship between Shakespeare and Indian cinema, bringing together researchers and filmmakers to establish the state of current scholarships in the vibrant, underexamined field. At the beautiful central London venue Asia House we are proud to welcome Vishal Bhardwaj and the scriptwriters of his Shakespeare Trilogy, leading academics in Shakespeare appropriation and Indian cinemas and Film London: Microwave India to present a sneak preview of an exciting new cinematic collaboration between the UK and India via Shakespeare. We also present, for the first time in the UK, a selection of cinematic memorabilia documenting Shakespeare on Indian screens from the National Film Archive of India.

Come and be a part of some of the freshest new thinking and groundbreaking discussions in this important interdisciplinary field.

We invite proposals for panels and 20 minute papers, posters and creative approaches, from scholars of all disciplines including film studies, postcolonial studies, Shakespeare studies and translation studies. These could be on any aspect of Shakespeare and Indian cinema, especially regional cinemas and overlooked aspects of Shakespeare in Bollywood.


Topics could include:

  • Prehistories
  • Indian film translations/ adaptations/ appropriations of Shakespeare's works - particularly in languages other than Hindi
  • Practitioners'/ directors'/ writers'/ actors' experiences
  • Parallel Cinema
  • Intertextual adaptations/ intermedial crossovers
  • Shakespeare in Indian film festivals
  • Documentaries on any aspect of Shakespeare in India/ Indian Shakespeares
  • Screenplays
  • Economics global and local
  • Comparisons of Shakespeare in Indian cinema to Shakespearean adaptations in other countries
  • Shakespeare in Indian cinema and regional audience reception
  • beyond Parsi theatre: Indian Shakespeare cinema and other indigenous performance traditions
  • Shakespeare and South-Asia diaspora films
  • Challenges of researching Shakespeare and Indian cinema
  • The challenges and importance of building an archive
  • Shakespeare and socio-political campaigns in Indian cinema
  • Gendering Shakespeare in Indian cinema
  • Artwork and promotional material: posters, flybills, film trailers, coffee table books, music, releases

Abstracts of 300 words and/ or panel proposals (plus a 50 word bio) should be sent to by 15 December 2015.

Responses will be made in early 2016.

Organising Committee:

Thea Buckley, Shakespeare Institute, University of Birmingham

Koel Chatterjee, Royal Holloway, University of London

Dr Varsha Panjwani, Boston University (London) and University of York

Dr Preti Taneja, University of Warwick and Queen Mary, University of London

Academic Advisor:

Dr Deana Rankin, Royal Holloway, University of London

Sponsors and Partners:

The Centre for Public Engagement, Queen Mary University of London

Royal Holloway, University of London


Asia House

The National Film Archive of India

Film London: Microwave India