After the success of Asur, film-maker Pavel is all set to start the shoot of his new film, the psychological thriller Monkharap, from June. A chat with Pavel...
How do you plan to celebrate your birthday (April 22) this year?
I have some small cards with pictures of cricketers and footballers on them that I have been collecting very religiously since childhood. I would love to spend time showing them to my son. And I shall take a resolution je ami ar monkharap korbo na!
What is the genesis of your new film?
Monkharap has its genesis in me, if I want to put it in a single line. The turbulent period we are all passing through is the breeding ground of my story.
How did the idea for the story come to you?
Just look outside the window, every face is so pale, no one is happy. The pandemic, its related lockdown, the rally of people on roads, separation of people from near and dear ones, all these have given me the insight into loneliness and depression which were so far latent in my mindscape. I can really feel the monkharap so often, not only in me, but also in others. Therefore I thought of looking into our inner selves. Hence Monkharap.
How would you like to approach the film?
This film will have people like us, the very commonplace middle-class us. Social media-addicted youth, job-deprived youth, anxious parents, middle-aged homemakers... all are parts of the story. A doctor joins them all into a wreath.
What is the genre and storyline of the film?
This is a psychological thriller with base of dark comedy and at last a feel-good topping for us all. Monkharap ja mon bhalo kore debe.
How and why did you decide to collaborate with Ankush?
After the success of Asur, I think this happened. The way people accepted Kigaan Mandi, Jeetda in a new avatar... people will love Ankush in this new role. Being a director, my hunger is to work with all the good actors in the industry. Ankush is no doubt a very good actor. And good actors have a clay-like quality. A good director should be able to make them fit into any shape of their choice.
Ankush. Telegraph Picture
Who does he play in the film?
He plays a psychologist in the film, who is trying to cure our monkharap.
How do you plan on exploring a new side of Ankush?
Every film is unique. In my journey so far starting with Babar Naam Gandhiji, via Rosogolla and Asur, I have always tried to deal with new ideas. Even in my story and scripts like Sonar Pahar, Bala, Bachha Soshur, my plan was to give a unique subject, a completely new idea that our audience have not witnessed so far. When Ankush and I will share this unique space, things will become automatically dynamic.
Who are the other cast members?
For the first time Ankush will not have a heroine in the film. The other important parts will be played by Riddhi Sen, Aparajita Adhya, Bidipta Chakraborty, Abantika Biswas, Priyanka Rati Pal among others.
(Left to right) Priyanka Rati Pal, Riddhi Sen, Aparajita Adhya. Telegraph Picture
When do you start shooting?
I plan to shoot in June and mostly in Calcutta. There will be an outdoor shoot, but the place has not been selected yet.