Like most Brook's productions, the staging of the Mahabharta met with its share of controversies. But in spite of an unsuccessful American tour, a nine-hour film version of the epic is scheduled for PBS's Great Performances series this spring. O'Connor, former director of the Royal Shakespeare Company, gives a hodge-podge chronicle of Brook's search for sponsors, suitable cast, and stage for the film. Applauded runs of the play at Britain's Old Transport Museum and a granite quarry in Perth led to choice of setting for the film version: Paris's Joinville Studios, now marked for demolition. The creation of phantasmagoric landscapes, costumes, make-up, and props, captured in Abegg's photographs, adds to this close-up of the ``king of image makers'' at work. For those interested in the modern stage.--Bibi S. Thompson, ``Library Journal ''