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If, in the unlikeliest of possibilities, you are a period British novelist, one whose work has endured the test of time, is taught vociferously by schoolmarms, and have been classified as Classic, then it is time you shuddered.

Chances are that some Indian woman, adding loud song to your restrained work, making the stiff upper-lip quiver with the smell of masala, is going to turn your piece of literature into a big movie.

In timing best described as queerly coincidental, William Makepeace Thackeray and Jane Austen are having their bestsellers turned into big films -- Vanity Fair and Bride And Prejudice respectively.

While Vanity Fair opened to a lukewarm opening in the US, Bride And Prejudice releases in India and the UK on October 8. Both are hoping for an Oscar nod.

While the fact that our celebrated international mistresses of cinema, Mira Nair and Gurinder Chadha, happen to be simultaneously making period films, is amusing, there are few lesser-known facts about the films and the people involved, that are certainly worth more than a look.

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Text: Raja Sen
Design: Uday Kuckian

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