Screenwriter Spotlight: Finalist Vikas Bandhu

Chicago Screenplay Awards Questionnaire

By Chicago Screenplay Awards Dept.


  1. What’s your name? Where were you born? Where do you live? And what’s your hobby? 

I’m Vikas Bandhu. I was born in New York City. I currently live in LA. My hobbies include reading, watching sports (like tennis), music, and board games.

  1. Where did you come up with the concept that just placed as Finalist in the screenplay contest? How long did it take you to develop it into the screenplay it is now? 

I had heard about the Bhopal disaster many years ago. After watching Chernobyl I saw how a series about an ecological disaster could be done in a polished and non-exploitative way. It took me a 4-5 months to develop the show.

  1. From concept to finished draft, can you take us through your screenwriting process? 

First I write out all the details I want to see. Then, I do character sketches and do a very rough outline – what happens first, second, third. Then I do a more refined outline. Then I jump right into the script.

  1. When did you realize that you wanted to become a screenwriter?

I wanted to be a screenwriter when I was a kid, before I knew what a screenwriter was. I wanted to tell stories that got made into movies and TV shows.

  1. Who are your biggest filmmaking/screenwriting influences? What about their style do you like or borrow?  

Alfred Hitchcock, Davis Fincher. 

  1. Have you ever been obsessed with a movie or TV show? If so, which one? Why? 

Zodiac, Psycho, Apocalypse Now, Mad Men, Sholay.

  1. What’s your favorite moment in cinema history? Why? 

It changes, depending on the mood I’m in. Right now, it’s one of the key reveals from SHOLAY.

  1. Who’s your favorite character in cinema history? Why? 

I love Jay and Veru from Sholay.

  1. If you could talk to anyone from any era, who would it be and what would you ask them? 

Stanley Kubrick.

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