We asked the director of Kapoor and Sons, Shakun Batra, to list the books on cinema that gave him the best understanding of the film business and moviemaking. Here are his picks:
Conversations with Billy Wilder by Cameron Crowe
These are two of my favourite directors and master story-tellers. It’s a similar format as Hitchcock-Truffaut but both these men are much funnier and share secrets to their craft in a very friendly tone. Okay, time for a little confession – as a film student, this was a rare find. I borrowed a copy of this book from Vancouver public library and never returned it. I paid a heavy penalty but it was well worth it.
PS – Please don’t get any wrong ideas here. Ahem ahem!
Woody Allen on Woody Allen by Stig Bjorkman
I’m obsessed with Woody Allen and there’s no film list for me without his mention. Out of all the books on him and and his work, I found this one to be most comprehensive.
Adventures in the Screen Trade by William Goldman
Here’s a man who won two Academy Awards and said “nobody knows anything”. It is one of the most definitive and unabashed insights into Hollywood and a lot of it holds true for how the Indian industry functions too. Especially that “nobody knows anything”. Amen.