Writer Suman Kumar on the success of Guns & Gulaabs

The creator of Family Fan, Farzi gets candid about writing, comedy, and more
Suman Kumar in action
Suman Kumar in action

Suman Kumar, the man behind the Screenplays of Guns & GulaabsThe Family Man, and Farzi, is a writer, director, stand-up comic, bird photographer, an avid cook, and a forever learner. Indulge engages in a tete-e-tete with Kumar.

How did Guns & Gulaabs happen?

We had the premise of a small-town kid who is a class topper but loses his rank when a girl from a big city enters. When we were talking to Netflix we researched and thought about taking opium-related smuggling, gangsters, cartels and fusing it with the innocence. That’s how we have Guns & Gulaabs today.

What kind of research went behind re-creating the 90s?

Raj & DK and I lived through the 90s in small towns. Also, we had a list of markers like landlines, phone booths, lending libraries, cold drink brands, automobiles, etc.

A scene that you found difficult to write

The entire climax took us some time to crack because we were traversing through non-linear timelines with multiple narratives.

Do you put face to the characters while writing?

I usually don’t. Once the script is in a certain place where we can go into pre-production, then we start discussing choices.

What inspires you as a writer?

I’m perennially pregnant with stories. When you give me a series I’m like a kid in a candy store. I love creating characters and worlds. I don’t want to limit myself to just cinema or series, one day I’ll probably write a game.

Is there a genre you would like to explore?

Psychological horror

What is your take on writer’s block?

Fortunately, I have not faced it. I write six to eight hours a day but with breaks in between. I watch a YouTube Video, cook, or learn a song. As an artiste, it’s important to have hobbies.

How is the stand-up comedy scene shaping up?

I wrote a show called Mr. Mommy on my experience as a stay-at-home dad in Kolkata. I am also in the process of writing a show on our adopted dog, Buttercup. I don’t think it’s a good time for stand-up comics right now; so I hope to return to the stage in the next two years.

Your upcoming projects

My Tamil film is in post-production. I’m developing The Family Man 3 and also set to direct a crime-comedy Kannada film.

Guns & Gulaabs is streaming now on Netflix

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