| June and Parambrata in Swapnasundari action at The Park swimming pool. Picture by Aranya Sen
She’s 28 and a glamorous ad executive. He’s 22 and a gawky copywriter. A love tale with a twist is telefilm Swapnasundari starring Parambrata Chatterjee, Kushal Chakraborty, Arnabi Chowdhury, Biplab Dasgupta, Tanima Sen and June. But the real twist in the tale lies in the face behind the camera — June.
Here’s a portrait of the actress as director, on July 17-18:
6.30 am: June downs a cup of coffee, gets into her tracks and speeds off to Bharat Lakshmi Studio. No time to grab a bite. The first shoot is outside Victoria Memorial, the sky looks menacing and June has her fingers crossed. After an hour of nail-biting wait, Parambrata turns up and the team heads off for Victoria Memorial.
10 am: Time to roll and cinematographer Purnendu Bikash Chaki is ready with the camera. June takes one long ‘look through’, shouts ‘action’, and then jogs up to leading man Parambrata along the thoroughfare in front of the Memorial. “I try to drill some sense into my copywriter about being smart and suave,” explains June.
1.30 pm: A corridor at The Park. As ‘director’ June pores over the monitor, adjusting Parambrata’s position, daughter Shivangini and son Shiven troop in with their grandma. A couple of shots taken, the team shifts to the swimming pool. “That’s the scene closest to the climax,” says June, taking a quick look at the script before slipping into a swimsuit (covered in a green wrap).
3 pm: A crowd-stopping shoot is underway on the Maidan. With June prancing around in excitement and barking instructions, Parambrata pulls off a Govinda act. “A dream sequence which I want to keep as a surprise,” says the tight-lipped director.
6 pm: The team lands at Genesis ad agency on Elgin Road for the office scenes, with Arnabi, Parambrata and Biplab Dasgupta.
9.30 pm: Pack-up. After a couple of shoots on Chowringhee, June heads for home. “I just slumped on the bed,” says she, but not before flipping through the following day’s things-to-do.
8 am: From morning till evening, the cast and crew are locked up at Bharat Lakshmi Studio for the indoor shots. After 16 scenes or so, the team lands at The Park around 6 pm to can “the beginning of the climax”.
7 pm: A room in The Park Residence Lounge is where the final night’s action is slated. Looking pristine in white sari, June is a lot more relaxed discussing the details with Sudeshna Roy (who has penned the script). A party scene is on, with Kushal and June exchanging rings and the crew is on a high. June’s friends (including Kanishka Sarkar who scores the soundtrack) and family figure among the “guests”.
9.30 pm: Time to call it a day; June is happy with the way things have shaped up. “She was a little hyper on the first day, but she is very confident and relaxed now,” says Parambrata about his director. “June has done all the groundwork and is handling it very efficiently,” he adds.
Final frame: The debutante director who “worships Aparna Sen” is convinced she’s found her calling. “I would rather direct than act,” she declares.