No stranger to doing successful adaptations Beaufoy says  his mantra is  keeping the people, tone, spirit and heart of a book the same but putting everything else up for grabs. He describes the process of turning book-into-film sometimes as “bruising”. He met Torday before they started and got his blessing but did not engage with him after that point. “I think you are doing a disservice to a novel just by transposing it wholesale on to the screen because it doesn’t work. They are completely different beasts. It was the same for Slumdog Millionaire . It was a very free adaptation of the book, Q&A. . It’s kind of like brother and sister , different but the same,” he says.
Beaufoy also was happy to be able to present a portrait of the Middle East we never see in films today, not the one where they are trying to blow each other up. “We get a very mono-dimensional view of the Middle East at the moment and I thought this was the opposite side. We see a side of tolerance and respect and just trying to be respectful of other countries and human beings, ” he says.

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