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"Mumbai never disappoints when it comes to fascinating stories": writer S. Hussain Zaidi

The film industry is a highly competitive place where morals have a short shelf life, says writer S. Hussain Zaidi.

March 27, 2022 / 06:21 PM IST
Alia Bhatt in 'Gangubai Kathiawadi'. The film is based on

Alia Bhatt in 'Gangubai Kathiawadi'. The film is based on "The Matriarch of Kamathipura", a story in 'Mafia Queens of Mumbai' (2011), written by S. Hussain Zaidi with Jane Borges.

S. Hussain Zaidi's passion for his work as a crime reporter in Mumbai during the '90s shines through in the multiple stories he has told us through his books in the last few decades. Years of meticulous research, accumulation of facts, and his honest and artistic portrayal of events make him a master storyteller. While Hollywood was known for its gangster films, it was Zaidi's stories that gave a new lease of life to gangster cinema and the underworld in Bollywood, during the early 2000s.

His reporting days as an investigative journalist, multiple interviews and encounters with the underworld and its associates, honed his ability to create compelling characters and share chilling insights into the mind of a criminal - and that's what drew filmmakers to him.

Talking about his foray into Bollywood, he tells us, "I am thankful that my first book Black Friday was adapted into a movie and that got the ball rolling for me." Zaidi's latest book, Zero Day, is a thriller on cyber terrorism.

Most of Zaidi's best-sellers went on to become memorable films like Black Friday, Phantom, Shootout at Wadala, Byculla to Bangkok, documentary Terror in Mumbai, Class of 83, Mardaani, London Confidential to the latest release, Gangubai Kathiawadi.