Now, there is a war of words between Chetan Bhagat and the makers of ‘3 Idiots’ film. Aamir Khan is acting as the poster boy of ‘3 Idiots’ and it seems that Chetan Bhagat has an impossible battle to fight. If it was just 5 years ago, he would not stand a chance against someone like Aamir Khan and all the people would have laughed at this face. However, this is the age of Internet and thanks to Blogging, everyone has an opportunity to spread their message.
The bone of contention is that Chetan Bhagat is claiming that the movie is ‘largely’ based on his novel “Five Point Someone” and he did not receive any appropriate credit for this. On the other hand, Aamir Khan and others are saying that the movie is ‘loosely’ based on this novel and the script of ‘3 Idiots’ is original and it is Chetan Bhagat who is acting inappropriately.
Chetan Bhagat is a columnist for Dainik Bhaskar & The Times Of India and thus, he is well known to many readers. Now, let us see who said what.
First is Aamir Khan:
"He is trying to take away the credit from the film's writer Abhijat Joshi, which I am very upset about. It is an attempt on his part to try and take the credit away from the person who has actually worked on the script. It's very unfortunate. There should not be any confusion to anyone that Abhijat is our film's writer."
"But in my opinion the credit should be given to Abhijat. For three years, this man has worked on the script. Nobody knows him, but Chetan is a big star."
"Abhijat has written the script and Raju Hirani worked on it. Raju and Abhijat took the idea from Chetan's book. The starting point is Five Point Someone, but after that the script has changed entirely."
So, what Aamir Khan basically said is:
1. Aamir is sure that Abhijat Joshi is the real writer of the movie and it is original script.
2. Chetan Bhagat is acting in a bad way.
3. The starting may have been some similar like Five Point Someone but then there is no similarity.
On the other hand, Chetan Bhagat has written in his own blog:
The only reason it has surfaced after the movie’s release is because Five Point Someone has a few million readers, and when you copy a popular story claiming it as ‘original’ and ‘completely different’, people are going to find out. People did, and so did a lot of media journalists.
The case is as simple as the makers claiming the story as their own, and clearly it is not. Pre-release, the makers made press statements like the movie is only ‘very loosely’, ‘2%-5% inspired by the book’. After release, those who have read the book and seen the movie (and frankly, I think those are the only people who have the right to comment) find the film to be an adaptation of Five Point Someone. The setting, characters, plotline, dramatic twists and turns, one-liners, theme, message – almost all aspects that make up the story are from FPS. Yes, there are some changes, any adaptation requires that – but it is no way an original story. Leading movie critics have privately admitted to me that the film is 70% the book. Still, don’t take my word for it – go read the book, watch the film.
The entry is very long and you should read it. Anyway, Mr. Bhagat is saying:
1. It is a best seller book with thousands of readers. So, the readers know already whether ‘3 Idiots’ is largely or loosely based on his nove.
2. The people related to ‘3 Idiots’ contacted him and although he wanted to see the script or see the film in advance was not granted this facility.
3. Aamir Khan has not even read the because "he was told by the makers not to read the book, and he hasn’t."
I am shocked with the third accusation that Aamir Khan has not read the book. If this is true, then Aamir should have been silent about the whole issue.
By the way, the blog entry of Mr. Bhagat has received enormous amount of comments and many visitors supported his claim that the film was largely based on his novel.
I think that the best way to solve this problem is that some writers and journalists watch the movie and read the book and then write about their own opinions.