This skit is written especially for the Indian/Asian audiences. It wouldn’t make sense elsewhere… even if you change the characters to Hollywoodesque stars. You need to understand Hindi movies to understand this. As well as the current scenario (ie. the reference to Amitabh etc). Of course I am a fan of Hindi movies… so this functions as a satire of Hindi movies as well as a modern-take on the Christmas narrative. Once again, not to be taken seriously.
Characters: Script writer and Director
Setting: Youth Bible Study | Time: About 3 minutes
Bible Passage: Matthew 1:18-2:18, and Luke 2:1-20
Key thoughts: Values of the world versus the values of God, Fact vs fiction
Director: Tell me honestly, will this film run?
Writer: Of course, boss. Especially if Shah Rukh (Khan) and (Amitabh) Bachchan saab are signed then 100 per cent!
Director: So, what’s the story?
Writer: Well, it’s based on the Christmas story….
Director: Whaaat? Christmas? Don’t you know that Christians are a minority in India, that means no one will watch the movie!
Writer: No sir, you’re misunderstanding the market. Remember Mel Gibson’s Passion of Christ? And Da Vinci Code? Themes that involve Christians are quite hot in the market today. Usually, they’ll be a fight by some religious group and then, some explanation. Free publicity is guaranteed!
Director: But some state will ban the movie and we’ll lose more money.
Writer: That’s a risk, but we can avoid that completely by giving each chief minister a share of the profits.
Director: Ok, go on.
Writer: The story is very simple. Shah Rukh Khan is Joseph who lives in Bethlehem. He is in love with Mary (and we can caste a fresh face to save some money). However, the rich Zamindar of Bethlehem also loves Mary and so he tries to kill Joseph. Instead, Joseph’s parents get killed and Joseph escapes from Bethlehem with Mary. When Mary sees a vision, telling her about the birth of a son, Joseph decides its time to take revenge. He returns with Mary to Bethlehem. But because he is in hiding, he rests in a local shed where Mary gives birth to Jesus. The Zamindar finds out about this and tries to kill Joseph. But instead, Joseph gets the help of the dwellers of Bethlehem to fight against the Zamindar.
Writer: (ignoring Director) And then the Zamindar goes to Herod for help. Herod will be played by Bachchan saab. That’s where we’ll have a mujra scene, it will be excellent, appeal to the younger male audience.
Director: You’re making Amit ji a villain?
Writer: Wait and see… Herod and Zamindar team up to destroy Joseph. But when all seems lost, three wise men from the East come to help Joseph, along with the local shepherds and with their help Herod’s army is defeated. Of course in this fight scene many innocent lives are lost. But Joseph, Mary and Jesus are saved. The Zamindar is killed and Herod is badly wounded. Just before Joseph kills Herod, one of the wisemen tells Joseph that Herod is Joseph’s real father. So, Bachchan saab (Herod) in his final act of heroism, protects Joseph from a sword of the Zamindar (who we all thought was dead), and helps Joseph to escape to Egypt, and takes the blame for killing the Zamindar. The End.
Director: Wow. But are you sure this is based on the Christmas story?
Writer: Creative license Director saab. When filming religious stories, everyone is allowed a little bit of divine imagination.
Director: Where are the angels? In Christmas story there were some angels.
Writer: Oh I forgot. The shepherds are angry with the Bethlehem people, but angels will be a gang of desert nomads who will come to the Shepherds to tell them to join hands with Bethlehem people so that there will be peace on earth. There will be song sequence there as well.
Director: Excellent, we might even get a Tax Free rating. Make sure you put something about ‘Peace on earth’
Writer: Yes boss. I told you it’ll work.
Director: Can we just make one change.
Writer: What boss?
Director: See, we want to project Shah Rukh as a young man, so making him a father of a child can make him look like an old man. Let’s just remove the birth scene from the movie, and then it will be a better film.
Writer: Yes boss, I think you’re right. Jesus can come in part two or something. (scratching with a pen) Birth of Jesus is out from this film.