[ This is a Guest Post by Adv Narayan Radhakrishnan, who also follows the trials and tribulations of characters in reel life with the same passion that he pursues the ones in his professional domain. He has sent across his version of a possible sequel to Kamal’s 1992 runaway hit, Thoovalsparsham as a screen narrative,and this leading article that so rightly explains the ‘background’ of creating his version screenplay. The Sequel Narrative will follow soon. Adv Narayan is right now at work on his new book, based on the depiction of Lawyers in Indian Cinema. You could mail him at firstname.lastname@example.org ]
Thoovalsparasham was a hit movie of 1992. Jayaram (Unnikrishnan), Mukesh (Bonny) and Saikumar (Vinod) were the young stars of the day. The movie was based on a Hollywood movie Three Men and a Baby starring Tom Selleck, Ted Danson and Steve Guttenberg. This movie itself was based on a French movie Three Men and a Cradle. Kaloor Dennis adapted Thoovalsparasham from this hit movie, with Kamal donning the director’s robes.
Three Men and a Cradle (1985 w. & d. by Coline Serreau) is the story of three young men- Jacques, Pierre and Michel who share an apartment in Paris, and have many girlfriends and parties Once, during a party, a friend of Jacques’ tells him he has a quite compromising package (which turned out to be heroin) to deliver, and asks him if he can leave it discreetly at their place. Jacques agrees and, as he works as a steward, flies away for a one month trip in Japan, telling Pierre and Michel about the package. Then, one of Jacques’ former girlfriends drops a baby (Marie) before their door, making Pierre and Michel believing it is the package they are waiting for. Their lives are then completely changed. André Dussollier acted as Jacques; Michel Boujenah was Michel while Roland Giraud was Pierre.
The Version trailer of 3 hommes et un couffin (1985)
Leonard Nimoy adapted this French movie to English as Three Men and a Baby in 1987 . Peter Mitchell (Tom Selleck), Michael Kellam (Steve Guttenberg) and Jack Holden (Ted Danson) are happy living their lives as bachelors in their lofty New York apartment. They all have girlfriends, jobs and a carefree lifestyle. This is disrupted when a baby arrives on their doorstep one day. A note with the child, Mary, indicates that it is Holden’s, the result of an affair with a recent co-star. The baby arrives in Holden’s absence—he is in away shooting a movie, leaving Peter and Michael to fend for themselves in taking care of the child, something in which their lack of experience befuddles them. At one point, Peter and Michael are mistakenly led to believe that they are to deliver Mary to two men who arrive at their door asking for “the package”. They discover moments before their departure that the men are drug dealers who were actually seeking a package of heroin. They retrieve the infant, leaving the men with a bottle of powdered milk. What results is a major change to the men’s lives as they try to adjust to surrogate fatherhood—balancing the demands of work, a social schedule and the rearing of a child. Soon their paternal instincts take hold, and they grow attached to the child. The drug dealers, demanding payment, ransack the men’s apartment looking for their drugs. The men formulate a plan to trap the dealers when they negotiate a deal to deliver the illicit goods. At the end of the movie the baby’s mother, a British woman named Sylvia (Nancy Travis) arrives, asking Mary back. Moments before her departure back to England she realizes she cannot give up her career to raise her daughter alone. The men, having grown attached to the child, invite her to move into their apartment with them.
The Trailer of Three men and a Baby.
Following the success of Three Men and a Baby, a sequel spawned in 1990 titled Three Men and a Little Lady. Coline Serreau the creator of the original film had no role in the writing process, save for lending the name of the characters. Sara Parriott and Josann McGibbon wrote the screenplay with Emile Ardolino donning the director’s robes. The film carries on with the story of the three men – Jack, Michael and Peter. They are living with Mary who is now five, and her mother Sylvia. The group is split up when Sylvia announces that she is getting married to an Englishman, and that she and her future husband intend to move to England after the wedding, taking Mary with them. Peter and Michael (joined later by Jack) travel over to England for the wedding where Peter realizes that Sylvia’s fiancé, Edward, intends to package Mary off to a boarding school as he has no real interest in her. Edward denies everything and Sylvia refuses to believe Peter as she knows he has disliked Edward from the beginning. During this time the attraction between Peter and Sylvia is growing, something he refuses to acknowledge to her (because he doesn’t know how to deal with these feelings) and she is determined to get married and forge a new life for herself and Mary with Edward. Peter eventually breaks into Pileforth in an attempt to get some proof of Edward’s scheme to send Mary there. He is discovered by the headmistress, Miss Elspeth Lomax, who was told by Edward that Peter is in love with her. She takes off her coat in front of him wearing a nightgown thinking it will turn him on. Eventually Peter comes clean and he and Miss Lomax head off to stop the wedding. In the meantime, in an attempt to cause a delay, Michael has kidnapped the vicar and Jack disguises himself as an elderly replacement vicar. Peter and Miss Lomax arrive at the church after numerous delays and he confronts Sylvia with the truth, Miss Lomax herself confirming that Edward has been lying. Sylvia confronts Edward and he admits the truth but it is too late – they are already married. Or so it would seem…. until Jack reveals himself to everyone. Not only has Jack finally proved his acting skills and fooled his friends, but the marriage is null and void. Sylvia declares her intention to go home and makes to leave until Peter stops her and declares his love, the two marry with Mary as their bridesmaid. However, this movie was not a big success.
In the same year (1990), Thoovalsparsham was released- with Jayaram (Unnikrishnan) portraying the role played by Roland Giraud in the French movie and by Tom Selleck in the Hollywood version; Sai Kumar (Vinod) portrayed the role played by Michel Boujenah in the French version and Steve Guttenberg in the Hollywood version. Mukesh (Bonny) portrayed the character played by André Dussollier in Three Men and a Cradle and by Ted Danson in Three Men and a Baby. Urvashi acted as the mother of the baby. The story revolves around the arrival of a baby at the doorstep of the flat belonging to the trio. Opposite their apartment is the flat of Ananthapadmanabhan (Suresh Gopi), a quiet and serious person.
A Clipping of the Movie.
Though Unnikrishnan and Vinod suspect Bonny to be the real father, eventually they find out that none of them are the parents of the baby. After the initial attempts to abandon the baby fails; the trio soon begins to fall in love and care for the baby. Kingini becomes the centre of attention of all in the flat, including the kids next door, the watcher Moosakka (Mamukoya), an aged doctor (Paravur Bharathan) and other neighbours played by Oduvil Unnikrishnan and Valsala Menon. The trio even engage a servant- Sisupalan (Innocent) to look after the baby. Then one day an old man (Bahadur) comes to the flat of the trio and asks for Ananthapadmanabhan (Suresh Gopi). Saikumar informs the old man that Ananthapadmanabhan is staying in the opposite flat. Though a shocked and confused Bahadur leaves, he later returns. Then the true story of Kingini’s parentage comes out. She is actually the daughter of Ananthapadmanabhan begotten through Bahadur’s unmarried daughter Maya (Urvashi). Keeping in mind the better interest of his daughter, Bahadur had decided to leave the baby at the footsteps of its father’s house. Unfortunately he got confused and placed Kingini at the wrong door. Now Urvashi is demanding the return of her daughter. Once the truth comes out, the trio insist that they will hand over the baby only if Ananthapadmanabhan and Urvashi both come together. Finally setting aside their differences, the couple comes together to claim the baby. The trio gives Kingini a warm send off packing her off with all the presents, gifts and toys they had bought for her during the few weeks she had stayed with them. The movie ends in a sentimental note- though only for a few days, Kingini had really touched the hearts of all three. Thoovalsparasham was a lot different from both the French and the English versions.
Years later in 2003, Coline Serreau wrote and directed an original sequel titled 18 Ans après (roughly translated to mean Eighteen Years Later) with Roland Giraud, Michel Boujenah and André Dussollier reprising their roles. Marie (Madeleine Besson) is now on the verge of turning 18. She decides to spend a summer vacation with her mother Sylvia. Joining them are Sylvia’s ex-husband (Ken Samuels) and his two young adult boys (Gregoire Lavollay-Porter and James Thierree). Eventually her three “dads” and a housekeeper show up. The differences between Americans and the French, the foibles of single parenthood, and the pitfalls of middle-aged love and sex provide the material for the film’s comedy. The movie became a hit in France, but did not attain the cult status of the earlier.
From 18 Ans après.
In 2007, Sajid Khan readapted Thoovalsparsham into Hindi as Heyy Babyy starring Akshay Kumar, Ritish Deshmukh and Fardeen Khan. Vidya Balan was the heroine of the said movie. Arush Mehra (Akshay Kumar) lives a fairly wealthy lifestyle in Sydney, Australia along with two room-mates Tanmay Joglekar (Ritesh Deshmuk), and Ali Haider (Fardeen Khan). He works for a food chain, while Tanmay entertains children as ‘Eddy Teddy’, while Ali takes care of their apartment. All three are womanizers. One day they find a baby girl right outside their door with a note that tells them to take care of her, since she is the daughter of one of them. The three boys go to all the girls they dated and slept with, and none of them claim that this baby girl is theirs. The boys try to take care of the baby, but she becomes a huge pain, so they drop her off at a church, but then realize they love her, so they take the baby back and name her Angel. They love her, pamper her, and grow a huge attachment towards her. One day, a girl, named Isha, comes to take Angel back, claiming her to be her daughter. The boys are shocked, but that’s when Arush tells them about his past. (1 year ago) Arush travels to Delhi to attend, his friend Arjun’s wedding, and this is where he meets with Isha Sahni, who also resides in Australia, he impresses and wins her over, and they spend a night together, but shortly thereafter Isha catches him sleeping with Devika, Isha’s friend, so they both split up. Arush returns to Sydney and forgets about this incident. Tanmay and Ali are shocked after hearing the story and the boys find it very difficult to live without Angel. Arush ends up challenging Isha that she has to marry someone faithful within 7 days that will accept Angel, if she’s not successful she will have to give Angel back to him, so they both sign a contract to make the deal final. The boys worry that they might lose the bet since, Isha is very beautiful and wealthy, Arush makes a plan to win Isha and his daughter Angel back with the help of Ali, Tanmay and Isha’s father. Firstly Ali disguises himself up as a freaky, traditional boy, with the help of Isha’s father, but it backfires when Isha thinks he’s good for her and Angel. To scare Isha, Ali attempts to shoot an apple off the top of a boy’s head, at a fair, which angers Isha, and she decides not to marry him. Then on the same day Tanmay/Eddy Teddy meets her at the fair, after seeing his affection towards kids, she decides he will be good for Angel and herself. A few days later, Isha finds out the truth, and plans to flee with Angel on her private jet, since she was fooled and has lost the deal. Tanmay and Ali take the contract with them as well as phoning the police, and get their right on time. Just when the police were about to take Angel away from Isha, Arush comes and tears up the contract and allows Isha and Angel to go their separate ways. Arush, Tanmay and Ali are nevertheless upset until their bell rings the next day. The boys are amazed because they find Angel at their doorsteps. A few moments later, Isha turns up telling Arush that it was very hard for them both to forget him. In the end, Isha weds Arush and they all live happily ever after. This movie actually combined the story of Three Men and a Baby as well as Three Men and a Little Lady.
The Trailer of Heyy Babyy.
Hollywood grapevine has it that a third part of the movie titled Three Men and a Bride is in the making, with Peter Mitchell (Tom Selleck), Michael Kellam (Steve Guttenberg) and Jack Holden (Ted Danson) coming back making arrangements for Mary’s wedding.
It’s in this background the sequel for Thoovalsparasham is written. Frankly, I believe that the charm of the story lies in the sequel thread. As a standalone movie, this plot might not work.