Tag: Aparajita-Ghosh-Das

Upcoming Bengali Film Ek Phali Rodh Story to Present the Changing Face of the Once Compassionate City of Joy


Bengali Film Ek Phali Rodh Press Conference

“So Atanu what criterion did you keep in mind while selecting the actors for your upcoming Bengali film Ek Phali Rodh?” asked Rajat in a typical detective kind of interrogation. If you are wondering what is this all about, then let me tell you that this was exactly the way the press conference of Ek Phali Rodh was conducted. Rajat is none other than Barun Chanda while Atanu being questioned is director Atanu Ghosh. The press conference was held in the presence of the director Atanu Ghosh and cast members Ritwik Chakrborty, Dhritiman Chatterjee, Aparajita Ghosh Das, Jisshu Sengupta, Tota Roychowdhury, Barun Chanda, Joy Sarkar and Suchandra Chowdhury.

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The film Ek Phali Rodh revolves around Bystander Effect which is a socio-psychological phenomenon that refers to incidents where people do not help strangers in crisis. The film is about a social scientist Dr. Somshankar Roy who engages Anwesha (a post-graduate in sociology from an affluent family, engaged to the celebrity singer Joy) and Swagato (a journalist with no decent job and a financially distressed girlfriend Rupa whose mother has been diagnosed with cancer) for creating mock situations on the roads of Kolkata to check the reaction of the people and analyze as well as derive conclusive theories on the Bystander Effect. Pratim Guha, the blind yet dynamic and emotional love story writer learns about the whole experiment and gets involved in it in order to find the plot of his next story. All goes well until suddenly one of these people go missing. Who goes missing and why and even if someone is, is it a mock crisis or a real one, will Dr. Roy’s experiment see a successful end or will it go haywire, Ek Phali Rodh answers it all.

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“I was not at all aware of this phenomenon before Atanu da told me. I was both surprised and mesmerized. I had seen such reactions but I did not know that psychologists had developed some theory regarding this” said Aparita Ghosh Das who plays the role of Anwesha in the film.

Jisshu Sengupta plays the role of Joy in the film. Atanu Ghosh, who had worked with Jisshu earlier in Takhan 23 praised the actor for his good looks and his acting capabilities. “Joy is a musician who is possessive about his girlfriend Anwesha. He dislikes the fact that she goes around the city creating such mock situations. He fears that she might get into trouble. He may look like a bit possessive but in reality he ties to protect her from harm” said Jisshu.

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Director Atanu Ghosh highlighted that all the characters in this film have grey shades. None of the characters can be termed as black or white. “I am also happy that I have worked with some of my favorite actors and actresses in this film” added the director with a smile.

The music in the film has been composed by Joy Sarkar while the lyrics have been penned down by Suchandra Chaowdhury. Rupam Islan, Srikanta Acharya, Rupankar, Somlata and Lopamudra have sung songs in this film. Speaking at the occasion, lyrist Suchandra Chowdhury said,“Joy Sarkar is already a very popular music composer. Hence I was having doubts whether I will be able to do work properly with him. But he is a gem of a person and has helped me much. When I was at a loss of words, I used to give him calls at the middle of the night and he would always help me out”.

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Joy Sarkar who is the music composer of this film said “I was initially surprised when Atanu da asked me to compose the music for such a realistic film. I thought why anyone will need music for such a film. However he persisted and I composed the music of this film. This is actually my first work with Atanu Da though Rupkotha Noy released first”.

Produced by Antara Ghosh and Bitan Roy, the story and screenplay of this film has been handled by Atanu Ghosh. Indranil Ghosh is the art director, Soumik Halder is the cinematographer and Sujoy Dutta Ray is the editor of this upcoming Bengali film.

The film is slated for release on the 5th of December.

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Interview: Director Atanu Ghosh on his Upcoming Bengali Film ‘Ek Phaali Rodh’, the Bystander Effect and His Expectations from the Film

 

Ek-Phaali-Rodh-Story

Sanjib Banerji, Sholoana Bangaliana: Your next film Ek Phaali Rodh is ready for release… You must be excited!!

Atanu Ghosh:”It’s a film very close to my heart. I was quite hooked on by the issue of ‘Bystander Effect’ and wanted it to serve as the springboard for the concept of the film. Besides, it gave me an opportunity to work with some of my most favorite actors. The form of the film, combining fiction with non-fiction, use of hidden camera and CCTV footage is quite new for me. The music by Joy Sarkar also turned out to be quite captivating. So, it’s an exciting package indeed.

 

All of your earlier films, dealt with social and psychological and social issues, we guess there won’t be any exception regarding EPR as well. Please throw some light on the plot?

The film takes off from the issue of Bystander Effect – the socio-psychological phenomenon where people do not offer help to strangers in distress. A social scientist (Dhritiman Chaterji) is working on it and as part of the research, he engages Swagato (Ritwik Chakraborty) and Anwesha (Aparajita Ghosh Das) to create mock crisis on the streets of Kolkata. The aim is to analyze human behavior and derive conclusions from them. Suddenly, one day, they come face to face with some acute crisis which takes them off-guard and they cannot decipher whether its ‘mock’ or ‘real’. After that, there is lot of high-voltage drama, suspense and quite a bit of emotion coming in.

 

‘Bystander effect’ is the underlying theme of the movie. Why did you choose such a topic and do you intend to spread any kind of awareness in the society about such human emotions and conditions.

The topic is quite alarming. It all started with the public murder of 28-year-old Kitty Genovese in New York in 1964. 38 people watched the young woman getting stabbed and killed on the street and yet no one chose to raise alarm or call the police. It shook the nation and the world at large and rocked our faith against each other. Exactly fifty years have passed since then and there has been numerous incidents happening in different parts of the globe. Though the issue is very sensitive and raises fundamental questions about human behavior, the aim of the film is not restricted to creating awareness. I strongly believe the film stands on its own intending to satisfy viewers as a work of art exploring human emotion, drama and suspense.

 

What kind of research did you have to do in order to create an entire feature film around it?

The most cinematic aspect of Bystander Effect research lies in the use of ‘mock’ crisis. All over the world, social scientists hire small-time actors to enact scenes of crisis on the streets. And that is what turned me on to create a feature film around the subject. Quite a few books as well as Youtube videos gave me a theoretical know-how and then I met a few social scientists and organizations who were working on this issue. I always enjoy delving deep into the basic reality before designing its fictional representation.

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In Rupkatha Noy we saw you presenting Soumitro Chattopadhyay so beautifully, and in EPR you have cast Dhritiman Chattopadhyay who is also a very experienced actor and an industry veteran, your experience of working with Dhirtiman sir? 

I have been waiting for long to work with Dhritiman Chaterji. For quite some time, we used to catch up whenever he came over to Kolkata from Chennai (where he stays now) and I really enjoyed those enlightening sessions. That is how, we started sharing a bond and Ek Phaali Rodh was the best thing to have happened after that. Apart from being a very experienced and accomplished actor, he is a brilliant mind with varied interests and a charming personality. Interacting with him is always a pleasure.

 

You have repeated Tota Roychowdhury, Aparajita Ghosh Das (Chakraborty), Arunima Ghosh (Abby Sen) and Jisshu Sengupta in two of your movies, do you think these four actors are underrated in  Tollywood or some consider them as unlucky for Box Office success as well ? If yes, do you intend to break this notion and jinx?  

This custom of branding an actor as unlucky for Box Office is utter nonsense. Some actors never get their due and that has happened throughout history. We should acknowledge their talent and passion for acting. No use lamenting as to why they never got the adulation they deserve. Jisshu, Tota, Arunima and Aparajita have proved their brilliance time and again in cinema or television and they are some of my most favorite actors. I would go on working with them irrespective of how they are branded by the industry.

 

Ritwick Chakraborty is now the budding Star Actor of Tollywood, your directorial views on Ritwick, the actor?

Ritwick is sensational! He can give a unique edge to a character by using his reactionary power, sharp intellect and improvising skill. It’s not common that we come across such actors who can work wonders with a combination of intuitive skills.

 

Joy Sarkar during the music launch of Ek Phali Rodh said that after working with you, working with other directors becomes a little difficult as no one gives as much freedom as you do… We would like to know why do you always choose Joy Sarkar for the music in your films?

I like film music to be spontaneous and varied. Joy has this rare capacity of blending simple melody with intensity of expression. Besides, he loves to experiment and is never bothered about dictates of the market. In that way, we share a common vision. I have worked with Joy in three films (Rupkatha Noy, Ek Phaali Rodh, Abby Sen) and in each of them, he has developed a different musical expression.

                                                                                                                                        

Such a complex psychological behavior as the Bystander Effect forms the theme of your film, do you think the audience is ready for such complex topics, more from the comprehension point of view?

There is nothing complex in Bystander Effect. You see a stranger writhing in pain on a street. The question is, whether you will help him or not. As simple as that! Besides, none of my films are difficult to comprehend. Basically, I conform to a simple narrative style.

 Atanu-Ghosh-Interview

Currently what subjects are you reading and researching on and what can the audience expect next?

I am working on some subjects but it is too early to tell about them. It will be something entirely different. Can assure you that!

 

The Bengali film industry at the moment is said to be going through a slack period, do you think EPR, just like Srijit Mukherji’s Chotushkone, will act as oxygen for this wilted industry?

Certainly, I do have quite a bit of expectation regarding EPR. The subject is new, the treatment is not common, the cast includes some of the best names, and there is a lot of drama, emotion and suspense! I think the audience would like it.

 

Team Sholoana Bangaliana wishes the director Atanu Ghosh the Very Best and hopes that not only Ek Phali Rodh, his other upcoming Bengali films will also be super successful and give the much needed traction to the slacking Bengali Film Industry.

 

Interviewer:
SanjibSanjib Banerji takes a keen interest in both Old and Contemporary/modern Bengali literature and cinema and has written several short stories for Bengali Little magazines. He also runs a little magazine in Bangla, named – Haat Nispish, which has completed its 6th consecutive year in the last Kolkata International Book Fair. Being the eldest grandson of Late Sukumar Bandopadhaya, who was the owner of HNC Productions and an eminent film producer cum distributor of his time (made platinum blockbusters with Uttam Kumar, like “Prithibi Aamarey Chaaye”, “Indrani” and several others), Sanjib always nurtured an inherent aspiration of making it big and worthy in the reel arena. Upcoming Bengali Film Sesh Anko that has been scripted and creatively directed by Sanjib is currently under production and the suspense thriller is being directed by Tathagata Banerjee.