|Gaurav Chakrabarty (centre) in Chayamoy
Chayamoy, which releases on March 22, has a spooky element. Did you choose the story because ghost films are doing well in Tollywood now?
Well, I made the film after Bhooter Bhobishyot. In fact, I was in the censor board when Bhooter Bhobishyot was screened. It’s a fun film. But that’s not why I chose to make a ghost film. Besides, Chayamoy isn’t really a ghost film. It’s based on Shirshendu Mukhopadhyay’s story and I liked it when I read it. It’s a kind of story that people from all age groups can relate to. There’s a ghost and a young man who solves a mystery.
Have you stuck to the book or taken liberties?
No. I have followed the book to the T. I believe when a director is adapting a story on screen he must keep it intact, otherwise the essence is lost. Benuda (Sabyasachi Chakrabarty) plays the ghost and Gaurav Chakrabarty plays the man who comes from abroad to solve a mystery. The cast includes Paran Bandopadhyay, Dipankar De, Shantilal Mukherjee and Sudip Banerjee. Rituparna Sengupta has done an item number. There’s a message in the film that antique jewellery should be preserved. I have only added an interesting format, which is animation.
Among your contemporaries, you are the only one who’s keeping pace with the times, doing different kinds of films rather than potboilers...
Well, I’m known as a maker of potboilers but I was making different kinds of films back then too. Like Ajker Santan with Tanuja, Ranjit Mallick, Tapas Pal and Bumbada (Prosenjit). It was a very different kind of family drama, based on a true story. While I have made masala hits like Sasurbari Zindabad, I’ve also made films like Dai Dayitta, based on Prafulla Roy’s story, with Indrani Halder, Rituparna and Soumitra Chatterjee. Had I made Dai Dayitta now, it would have been a hit! I also made Tulkalam, a political film on Singur and Nandigram.
You are also involved with the ruling party...
Yes, but I am not a political person. I am more involved with the improvement of art and culture and cinema. I am a workaholic. I believe one can always do some work outside one’s field. I do seva of people. I am doing some good work, like the Technicians Studio project.
Has the construction of additional floors started at Technicians Studio?
Two floors are complete. The other three floors will be ready by November. They are all state-of-the-art, compact AC shooting floors with make-up rooms, dining area, costume room... everything under one roof. Nobody has to step out of the floor once they get in. Work on a Dolby Digital recording theatre and a dubbing theatre is also in progress.
What about the film city in Uttarpara?
It will happen sooner or later. There are a few brick kilns.... but files are being processed. Work will start soon.
Since you’re a part of the censor board, tell us what the status of Kangal Malshat is...
The matter has been taken up by the tribunal court. They will decide.