Bond’s simplistic novels exude his love for mountains, friendships, and life in all its shades. The famous author has been awarded many awards including the Sahitya Akademi Award in 1992, the Padma Shri in 1999 and the Padma Bhushan in 2014.
Over the years, his work has inspired many filmmakers to turn them into films and TV series. On his 88th birthday, here’s a look at movies, TV series, and short films created from the imagination of a literary genius.
Directed by prolific filmmaker Shyam Bengal, “Junoon” is an on-screen adaptation of Ruskin Bond’s novel, A Journey from the Pigeons, which is about the uprising against the British East India Company in 1857. The film stars Shashi Kapoor, Shabana Azmi, Jennifer Kendall and Nasiruddin Shah. Produced by Shashi Kapoor and narrated by Amrish Puri. The film received critical acclaim and won three national awards in 1979 for Best Feature Film in Hindi, Best Cinematography, and Best Sound Cinematography.
“Ek Tha Rusty” (1995)
“Ek Tha Rusty” by Shubhadarshini Singh was a Doordarshan show based on the Ruskin Pond stories. The show has aired for three seasons – season one (1995), season two (2012-2013), and season three (2014-2015). It chronicled 10-year-old Rusti, his boarding school life, his family, and his friends living in Dehradun. The series is the story of Rusty’s coming of age that was filmed extensively in Mussoorie and Dehradun.
“The Blue Umbrella” (2005)
This drama was based on Ruskin Bond’s novel The Blue Umbrella. The film directed by Vishal Bhardwaj received positive reviews upon its release with critics praising Pankaj Kapoor’s performance. Set against the backdrop of a small village in Himachal Pradesh, it revolves around the life of a nine-year-old girl whose precious umbrella is stolen. The movie also stars Deepak Dobrial.
“7 Khun Maf” (2011)
This is the second time that independent director Vishal Bhardwaj has adapted a short story by Ruskin Pond for a movie. “7 Khoon Maaf” is adapted from the Bond short story “The Seven Husbands of Susanna”. The film, starring Priyanka Chopra in the lead, tells the story of Susanna Anna Marie Johannes, an Anglo-Indian woman who caused the deaths of six people. The film stars Irrfan Khan, John Abraham, Anu Kapoor, Naseeruddin Shah and Usha Utop. The black comedy was well received by audiences and critics.
This anthology of stories by Ruskin Bond is currently streaming on Zee5. The 12-episode series features stellar stars. The series is an on-screen adaptation of Bond’s horror stories.
“The Black Cat” (2017)
The short film, which runs about 20 minutes, is based on the Bond short story. The film stars Tom Alter as Ruskin Pond, and is directed by Bhargav Saikia. The film revolves around a black cat and a mysterious woman who visits Bond’s shack after he fetches an old broomstick from an antique store. The film tells the story of Bond masterfully.
“The Funeral of Chachi” (2014)
Another short film based on one of the Bond short stories. The film revolves around a boy who is angry with his aunt. The main theme of the story is that anger is temporary and love is permanent.