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"Slumdog Millionaire" and "Spotlight" Writers Join Boulder Lit Fest

An event dubbed "the Greatest Literary Show on Earth" is bringing numerous award winning authors to Boulder. (Pixabay)
An event dubbed "the Greatest Literary Show on Earth" is bringing numerous award winning authors to Boulder. (Pixabay)
September 14, 2017

BOULDER, Colo. -- Boulder's public library will host an array of international writers this weekend as part of the ZEE Jaipur Literature Festival.

The event kicks off Friday and will feature India's Ambassador to Canada, Vikas Swarup, better known as the author of the book “Q&A,” which was made into the movie "Slumdog Millionaire.”

Swarup will take the stage on the heels of Colorado-based poet Anne Waldman's insights into the Beat Generation. Jules Levinson, co-director of the festival, said the goal is to get great writers together, in person, to talk about the big ideas in their work.

"Themes that somehow intersect; you know, it's not always obvious right away that they would,” Levinson said. "But the people who design the program are truly insightful, and they have a kind of magical ability to see connections that are not apparent to the rest of us right away."

The gathering is inspired - and curated - by the world's largest free literature festival in India, now in its tenth year, which draws some 350,000 people. In 2014, a London branch of Zee Jaipur was launched, and a year later Boulder was selected as the festival's U.S. home.

On Saturday, Michael Rezendes with The Boston Globe's "Spotlight" team, played by actor Mark Ruffalo in the Oscar award-winning film by Tom McCarthy, will speak with the editor of India's iconic newspaper, The Hindu, about the changing definitions of news in the current media landscape.

Levinson said in addition to creating a space where great minds meet to talk and listen, a community is formed over the course of the festival.

"That's part of what we are trying to encourage here, and I think in our first few years, that's what we felt,” he said. "People who are veterans of the festival in India would recognize it - that they were being invited into, in some sense, the world they'd like to live in."

Levinson said he expects more than 10,000 people to attend the program's third installment, which is free. To register, visit

Eric Galatas, Public News Service - CO