Tag Archive: Indraneil Sengupta


Riingo’s saga continues…

The filmmaker talks about his upcoming film, System, and more

 

Diganta Guha

He is known for delivering hard-hitting films like Kranti and Risk and he has done it yet again. Filmmaker Riingo carries on his tradition of making hard-line cinema with his upcoming venture System. The film, starring Indraneil Sengupta, Indrajit, Subhra Kundu, Barun Chanda and others, is based on the underworld system in Kolkata. “In Tollywood nothing much has been done on the underworld. The producers seem to shy away from the subject, although it’s very popular with Bollywood filmmakers,” says Riingo. “But thanks to the media and its explicit coverage of the underworld, Kolkata is ready to handle such a subject,” he adds. Tollywood’s last take on the underworld was Bratya Basu’s Raasta starring Mithun Chakraborty, Amitabha Bhattacharya and others.
System is actually a trilogy. As many as three stories unfold in the course of the film, each exploring different aspects of the underworld. “It is a full-fledged action film and also Indraneil’s first action drama. He has worked really hard, both physically and mentally, in preparing for the role,” says the director. According to Riingo the pivotal concept of the film is different. He is of the view that for gangsters, killing people is merely their profession, “You report and write, I make films, they kill people. The underworld doesn’t necessarily mean goondas. They are people like you and me, they dress up like us and some of them are quite educated as well,” says the filmmaker commending the underworld’s organization skills too. Riingo has also tried to explore the parallel power system.
As for action, Riingo informs that the film has loads of it, including a road fight in Kolkata. “We will shoot a car chase sequence in Mandarmani,” says Riingo whose shooting locations also include Himachal Pradesh and the Thar desert. “I have never worked in Himachal, I plan to shoot a song sequence there,” adds the filmmaker.
Every filmmaker has an inspiration. So what inspired Riingo to make such a film? “It’s the flamboyance of the characters in underworld sagas that has inspired me. Every individual is a rebel in some sense. Again the parallel system needs to be explored,” says Riingo. However, the filmmaker informs no particular film or book has influenced him to make System.
“Technologically we have advanced quite a lot. People are coming to the theatres to watch good films like Moner Manush, which has been liked by people of all classes. That’s a very positive sign,” says Riingo. He feels that his film System has happened at the right time. “I have no target audience in my mind. My aim is to make a good film so that people come to watch it,” he says. We hope it works.

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PostScript caught up with the model-turned-actor, Indraneil Sengupta, on the sets of Riingo’s System, an underworld saga…

 

Diganta Guha

He has made a mark as an actor in Bengali films working with directors like  Buddhdev Dasgupta, Kaushik Ganguly and Anjan Das. Excerpts:

Have you managed to settle down in Tollywood?
I don’t know whether I have or not but yes, I am working here.

Aarekti Premer Golpo is going places…
I am elated with the response. When we were making the film, I was under the impression that the film would go to various festivals, win awards, receive critical acclaim, both nationally and internationally. But I am amazed that it has also got such a good response from audiences. People are buying tickets in black, and those who are unable to see it are going back home disappointed. It was a bold subject, alternative sexuality, and we never thought the public would accept it so freely. The movie is being watched by one and all. This isn’t exactly the commercial everyday love story that you see on-screen and people appreciate the difference.

How was Rituparno Ghosh as an actor?
Rituda is brilliant. As an actor he is absolutely amazing. Working with him gave me the impression that he must be a great actor-director. He is very patient and his acting style is completely different. I learnt a lot from him…..
 
Did he guide you on the sets?
To a certain extent he did, but when you are acting yourself, it is not possible to guide your co-actor constantly, because you are busy with your own lines and parts. But yes he did help me with a few things. The character that I played was very complex. I am looking forward to working with Rituda, the director because then he would have the luxury to guide his actors.

You have done very meaningful films in Tollywood and not just run-of-the-mill stuff. Was it a conscious decision?
It’s a two way process. I have been choosey with my films, and I have got offers for certain kind of films only. I am really lucky that such scripts have come my way. Tollywood had a good run in 2010. Many small and medium budget films did very well. There are many talented, creative people in the industry. We have brilliant actors and directors. For me as an actor, Tollywood is important because of the kind of characters and scripts that I get. Hopefully, 2011 will see Tollywood doing even better.
 
Your wife Barkha is also working in Tollywood…
Barkha is hosting a show on Zing and doing a lot of live shows in Mumbai and Kolkata. She is consciously avoiding daily soaps because it takes up a lot of time. Even I suggested that she should skip daily soaps at the moment. In Tollywood she has done a cameo in Dui Prithibi which won her a best debutante award. She is also doing a full-fledged role in Mahesh Manjrekar’s Aami Subhash Chandra Bolchi with Mithun Chakraborty. She is very excited about it. Language is not a barrier for Barkha. She loves acting. If she gets more opportunities in Tollywood she would definitely work here more frequently.

Do you get time to meet each other?
When I am not working here, I am in Mumbai. When I am shooting in Kolkata, she makes it a point to take some time off to be with me. So, in a month we are together for about 15-18 days. 
 
What are your current projects?
I have just finished a film called Uro Chithi. Only the dubbing is left. I have System which is an action film, so if you think I haven’t done any mainstream film, here it is. I have also signed a comedy called Le Halwa. Bedeni is going to release soon. In System I play an underworld guy.
 
Do you have any projects in Mumbai?
No. I think I am too occupied in Kolkata to market myself in Mumbai.

Shauli Chakraborty
Film: Arekti Premer Golpo
Director: Kaushik Ganguly
Creative Director: Rituparno Ghosh
Cast: Rituparno Ghosh, Indraneil Sengupta, Chapal Bhaduri, Raima Sen, Churni Ganguly
Rating: Very Good

First things first — the film is not just a gay love story. It is more of a love story between two human beings with a strong message. A path breaking film, Arekti Premer Golpo makes you sit up and question if all that you perceive is actually, all that there is to perceive.
Here, Rituparno the actor is faced with his sole competitor — Rituparno the director. It isn’t necessary to choose one or judge both. For a fulfilling cinematic experience you only have to sit back and take note of art for art’s sake. Only then can you come out as a viewer unscathed from social constructs and box office gossip.
Whatever Rituparno’s reasons for choosing Chapal Rani as a subject, the film surely isn’t an explanation. Nor is he using it as a shield. The director makes this point in a scene where Momo (Raima) talks to Basu (Indraneil) about her reservations of Roop’s (Rituparno) intentions. Basu replies, “Nobody knows Roop more than I do…he is anything but a coward.”
The narrative has several layers to it — something that is so characteristic of the film’s creative director. Chapal Rani plays himself and is perhaps one of the lucky people to see his autobiography filmed in his lifetime. Several scenes from his childhood leave a mark. Like the one where Chapal is asked to shave his head after his mother’s demise. He questions, “Why am I the only one who has to shave? Just because I am her son? Why doesn’t Shejdi need to do it?” Later we see a parallel when Roop shaves his head and his unit offers condolences. Roop exclaims, “Nothing has happened. Everybody is fine at home. This is just my new hairstyle!”
There is another scene which depicts Chapal taking a dip in the Ganga and refusing to step out of the water without covering himself. Only his sister seems to understand his plight and throws a gamcha into the water. Chapal’s love for bisexual Kumar is as similar and dissimilar to Roop’s love for a much-married Basu. Also Chapal’s close realtionship with Kumar’s wife (Churni) is a very different one from the disturbing one between Rani (Basu’s wife) and Roop. There are a couple of other parallels as well, but I don’t want to give away the plot.
The film is full of symbolism and imagery. It is also poetic in places. Like the scene where Uday and Roop discuss Abanindranath Tagore’s painting titled ‘Shondhyer Pakhi’ or ‘Bird Of Dusk’ is brilliant. Similarly, music by Debajyoti Mishra is haunting. Bonomalee re…. poro jonome hoyo Radha… has been used all through the film. However, in each sequence the background score has symbolised different things.
When a reporter asks Roop whether his film is about Chapal Rani’s career or his sexuality, Roop retorts, “If I were making a film on Amitabh Bachchan would that have been relavant?” Need I say more?

Prosenjit shines in Autograph

 

 

Film: Autograph

Cast: Prosenjit Chatterjee, Indraneil Sengupta, Nandana Sen Direction: Srijit Mukherji

Rate: Good

 

 

Sudipta Dey

As the saying goes… it is difficult to be a hero in an empty room. For small time theatre actor Arun, it was difficult to get fame and popularity from an audience of six. He moved on, sold himself, and became ‘the untouchable’ Arun Chatterjee, the superstar. The story revolves around Arun Chatterjee (Prosenjit), the biggest star of Tollywood who sets out to take up a challenge at a time when luck has not been on his side. In the process, he meets debutant actress Srinandita (Nandana Sen) and a promising director, Subabrato (Indraneil). After a short period of dark and gloomy composition in the second half, Srijit Mukherji’s Autograph ends with a confident song, Beche thakar gaan, which conveys the character’s devastation in a mixed note. Director Srijit has not only used ‘film within a film’ format successfully, but the subtexts that he has used to depict the conflict in an actor’s life, shows the director’s command over the subject. The plot is not as simple as it is believed to be, but then life is not simple either. The ups and downs of an actor, a superstar, weaknesses and strengths of a man who has gone all out to win the battle are portrayed beautifully by Prosenjit. Only Prosenjit could have portrayed a character like Arun Chatterjee. Interestingly, Arun’s character has a striking resemblance to Prosenjit in real life. The filmmaker essayed by Indraneil too bears a semblance to Srijit himself. Considering the fact that Indraneil is just two films old in the industry (release wise), he has matched up to Prosenjit’s skills, and delivers better than expected from a newcomer. Nandana Sen on the other hand, spoils the best of dialogues with her bad delivery, when she could have added a lot to the script had she brushed up on her Bengali accent. Srijit has done a brilliant job with the script. Crisp and witty, the dialogues made the film an interesting watch. The songs though underplayed, adds to the film’s mood. Though in a small cameo, Dhruv Mukherji was a delightful addition to the story. Overall, it’s neither a commercial nor an arthouse film with convoluted storyline and endless metaphors. It is an honest film which shows the other sides of different lives with reference to the Bengali film industry. A must watch for the Pujas.

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