Pavel’s debut film Babar Naam Gandhiji has been making quite a ripple due to the posters put on the walls all over the city. Sholoana Bangaliana correspondent caught up with the new director on various facets of the soon to release film. Excerpts from the conversation…
Priyanka Dutta- So, the film’s name Babar Naam Gandhiji has been creating much curiosity among the people. What is the story of the film?
Pavel- The story is about a boy named Kecho, aged about ten years. He is a professional beggar. Why do I say professional? Because when the others earn Rs 30-40, he earns about Rs 250. But how does he accomplish that? He has some special techniques up his sleeve. He earns from the lovers whom he sees at parks or somewhere doing something illegal at some place. He befriends a girl named Mimi. Kecho wants to study in an English medium school. But for that, one requires the name of his father. He discovers that Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi is his father. However proving that is a challenge for Kecho. He is helped by Pavel who heads a NGO. What happens next is what the film is all about.
This is your debut film and you have a stellar casting comprising of the likes of Kaushik Sen, Parambrata Chatterjee, Sayoni Ghosh, Arun Mukhopadhyay, Debdut Ghosh, Ritabrata Bhattacharya. How was the shooting experience?
Oh!! I had a great time shooting with the cast. Kaushik da is extremely professional. He plays the role of a Tamil teacher, Vidyadhar Swaminathan. He is what one can describe as the negative character in the film. We hired a teacher who used to teach Kaushik da Tamil language. He was also present during the shooting and dubbing so that Kaushik da’s accent was perfect.
Param (Da) was very busy when I contacted him for the film. But after listening to the script, he actually took out time from his busy schedule to do this film. He took days off from the other films he had in hand to actually complete this film. I am very grateful to him for that. During the course of the shooting he became like an elder brother to me. He even had asked me to write the script for his next film. Param (Da) plays the role of Pavel in the film, who heads the NGO. This character is actually a reflection of my personality.
Sayoni, Arun Mukhopadhyay, Debdut da all have helped me immensely in making the film. Ritabrata Bhattacharya will be seen in a special role in the film.
Since you mention that Pavel is a reflection of your personality, what aspects of your personality can we see in him?
Well, I am also involved with a NGO and engaged in their activities like the character Pavel in my film. Apart from that I try and educate the children in developing thought processes and developing their moral agenda too.
You have worked with kids in the film. How was that experience? Can you recall any fun moments shooting with them?
I actually shot with five kids in this film. They were actually great to work with. We bonded well during the workshops that we had organized for them. Kecho (Surojit) and Mimi (Srijita Chowdhury) have made me proud by acting so well in the film. They proved that I was right in selecting them for the roles. As for fun moments during shooting, we used to have phuchka eating competitions. That indeed was something!! (laughs)
How did you make the selection of Kecho and Mimi for the film?
Well I had been to every acting institute and schools in the city looking for suitable kids to play these roles. But I returned empty handed. However I chanced upon them suddenly and I selected them. They had never done any acting before. So we conducted workshops for them. And they have acted really well in the film!!
Tell us something about the music of the film, Babar Naam Gandhiji…
The music has been composed by Raja Narayan Deb while the special music for the film has been composed by Sanjay Mondal and group. There are three songs in the film. Sanjay Mondal and his group has composed Raghupati Raghav Raja Ram (revisited) for this film.
You seem to have timed your release date quite well (releasing on 2nd October). A cliché question but still I am tempted to ask- your expectations from the film as a director?
Like every other director, I have high expectations from this film. The trailer has received great feedback from eminent personalities like Prosenjit Chatterjee, Srijit Mukherji. Srijit da was actually speechless after watching the trailer. Bengali films work much on word of mouth publicity and I too am banking heavily on it. I would only request my audience to honestly review the film and clearly state the good and bad parts. Hence, it is important to come and watch the film at the cinema hall.
With such an interesting name and a stellar cast, Babar Naam Gandhiji will surely feature in many audiences’ must watch list. Wishing the young debutant director all the very best!!
Director Pavel Interview by:
Priyanka Dutta takes a keen interest in lifestyle and entertainment related news. She also enjoys interviewing celebrities and other renowned personalities. Priyanka holds a post graduate degree in English and Mass Communication. Journalism is her passion and she has reported for many a reputed international web portals.