"The Director is on the line."
"The director? Phone please, father."
The actor held the mobile in his nervous hands which were trembling with fear and curiosity. Had the director decided to book him for his upcoming film? This very thought gave him goosebumps and there was a smile on his face. He decided not to ask him about the film. He wanted to hear the director telling him that news in his voice. He didn't tell anyone about a very slight chance he had to take a lead role in the director's classic. Instead he thought that he should wait for the public announcement.
"Hey, this is the director speaking."
"Sir, yeah! I am so much enthralled to speak with you."
"So, ready for a change? Drive to my office! I shall talk to you about a lead role in my upcoming film."
The director cut the call after saying about - the news the actor had been expecting through out his life - the agreement. He was at a loss for words and there he stood frozen midst his people asking him questions like a statue in the beach which stands unfazed midst the rumbling waves.
This had been his passion from the moment films were introduced to him or he was introduced to the films. His friends always told him that he had a talent for acting and he really didn't know if it was true or mockery. He was fortunate enough to have some good friends in the film industry. He clung on to them and was waiting for an opportunity which would change his career. Well, it did come. Not so easily.
Three minutes in a 3-hour long film was his first cast. Then 6 min in the next. It extended as an arithmetic progression. Finally the day has come to act for the entire 3 hours in a lead director's film. He was so excited for the next few days that he started growing his beard, exercising to keep his body fit. It was a film on the forest dwellers and he lived nearly for a month with them in the dense forests. He had not eaten food with fat content since the call. He looked similar to the protagonist of the Hollywood movie, "The Machinist". His hair had grown long enough that he could try a French plait. The shoot was supposed to start by the beginning of the next week. He didn't know that there was a storm coming to knock him down.
It was Sunday, a week before April in which the film's shoot was scheduled to begin. He was incessantly talking about his shoot to every Tom, Dick and Harry. One such Tom reported him the tragedy. The prayer ceremony was going to happen on the next evening much ahead of schedule and he was not informed about that. He called the director, there was no response. He tried his assistant's number and he picked up the call. It was so unfortunate that he picked up.
"Sir, what happened? I was not informed about the ceremony change."
"Uhh, Please hold. I will put him on the line."
Him? Who him? He was perspiring. There could not be a mistake. But the director would not have done it deliberately. What if he had? He would know everything in a moment.
"Director? I wasn't..."
"This is not the director speaking to you. I am the son of the producer."
"I wasn't informed about the change."
"Aren't you informed about the change? Oh, yeah! How could the director tell you? He was feeling a little bad about this."
"What is there to regret in telling me about the change of the dates?"
"Change of the dates? No, I am not talking about that. I am talking about you. You are not doing the lead role. You are not doing it. It is me."
He was stunned, wordless and his face looked pale like a dead fish taken out of frozen ice. However, the speaker continued.
"I am the son of the producer of this film and my father had accepted to produce it under this condition. I am playing the lead role."