I was never inclined towards acting as a profession. But prodded by my father, I thought of giving it a shot. Initially, what attracted me to the world of films was the idea that one got to travel to wonderful places at the producer’s expense!
But, when I joined actor Jochon Dastidar’s theatre group, Charbak, I had to do all sorts of work along with acting — from designing the sets to taking care of stage properties. Now I realise that no job was small as it gave me a fair idea of the world that I was about to enter.
In the late ’90s, I got my first break on television with a Hindi serial, Kaalpurush, and also featured in Raja Mitra’s Bengali film, Nayantara. I also played the role of the sidekick, Topshe, in Sandip Ray’s popular tele-serials on the fictional detective, Feluda. Over the next few years, I worked mostly in Bengali serials and films.
The turning point in my career came in 2006 when actor Arindam Sil referred me to director Anjan Dutt who cast me in his film The Bong Connection. The film was a resounding success and offers for meatier roles in Bengali films began to pour in. Other successful films like Chalo Let’s Go, Madly Bangalee and Rang Milanti followed.
With Sujoy Ghosh’s Kahaani, I received national and even global recognition, and the character of Bob Biswas, which I portray in the film, became a rage.
I have loads on my plate today like Arindam Sil’s Aborto and Manoj Michigan’s Damadol. I have also started getting offers for Bollywood films.
(As told to Yashodeep Sengupta)