KOCHI: A novel based on the Telugu film Bahubali: The Beginning, the biggest grosser in the history of Indian cinema, will be released soon. It has been written by author Anand Neelakantan, a Kochi native who is famed for novels based on mythological figures Ravana and Duryodhana.
The three-book series is titled Bahubali : The Untold Story. It will be a prequel, ending where Bahubali: The Beginning began. It will be fiction in the fashion of a historic fantasy – yes, somewhat like Game of Thrones -- which narrates the unseen, unheard and untold story of the empire of Mahishmathi.
The book will narrate episodes from the childhood of the royal slave Kattappa and the queen of Mahshmathi, Sivagami, prior to her ascension. It will feature earlier threats to the empire from Kalakeyas, the ferocious and cruel clan,” said author Anand Neelakantan.
The book is being written in English and will be translated to four languages -- Malayalam, Hindi, Tamil and Telugu -- and released simultaneously. The writing took almost a year, said Anand Neelakantan.
The release of the 500-page book will coincide with the release of the second film in the Bahubali franchise, titled Bahubali: The Conclusion.
The author said the novel is not to be a book version of the film script, which was written by K V Vijayendra Prasad, the father of the film’s director S S Rajamouli. “No one would be interested in reading a script rehashed in the format of a novel,” added the author.
Neelakantan’s debut novel Asura: Tale of the Vanquished became a surprise bestseller within a week of its launch. His second book was based on the Mahabharata and was a two-book series, titled Ajaya: Roll of the Dice and Ajaya: Rise of Kali.
Bahubali: The Untold Story will be published by Westland Books in collaboration with Arka Media and Graphic India.