June 29, 2011 (Calcutta Tube): Ushasie Chakraborty is a very good actress but is not seen as frequently as one would like to see her. She is beautiful and talented too. She has portrayed the complex role of Dipanwita in Anjan Dutt’s Ranjana Ami Ar Ashbona and talks about how she worked out the character in the film. She was last seen in a very brief role as Byomkesh Bakshi’s wife Satyabati in Anjan Dutt’s film of the same name. She talks about her career in acting, for the small and large screens. Read the interview at Calcutta Tube.
Was it difficult enacting the role of Dipanwita, the single-minded news channel journalist who is making a documentary on Abani Sen in Ranjana Ami Ar Ashbona?
I belong to a journalistic background. I worked as journalist in one of the biggest newspaper houses in West Bengal. I also worked for television both as journalist and as actress. So, as far as the role of a journalist went, which Dipanwita in fact is, was not difficult as I had a feel of the character. But the pressure I felt was sharing screen space with Anjan-da who is an institution unto himself, as director, singer and actor. There was a tension building within me which made me concentrate on my character much more than I ordinarily would have under normal circumstances.
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Dipanwita’s is a very complex character. So how did you prepare for it?
I did not have to go through any workshops but we rehearsed several times on the sets before the camera would begin to roll. In my opinion, all characters are complex and this one is no different. Specially, we rehearsed my last scene with Anjan-da when I confide in him about how it was his music, his songs that helped me overcome the darkest phase of my life. I place my head on his shoulder and at that moment, it is as if we seek and find emotional solace in each other. It is not love. It is a relationship you cannot give a name to but which is very much there.
What kind of director was Anjan Dutt?
He gives his actors a lot of freedom to interpret and improvise within the framework of the character he has written in the script. This gives the actor the fluidity and the confidence to do his own thing and then turn around to ask the director if everything is okay. He is really good because he knows how to handle his cast and crew and to draw the best out of them.
You are also part of the cast in Bedroom. Would you like to throw some light on your role?
Fortunately or otherwise, in Bedroom too I play a journalist. But the character in this film is miles away from the journalist in Ranjana Ami Ar Ashbona. I go to interview a character played by Rudraneel and a relationship develops between us. I do not think I should reveal any more about the film.
Which of your roles you would pick on as your favourite ones?
For television, my favourites are Sonar Horin and Ekhane Akash Neel. In the former, I had to play a little-educated school drop-out, a wife who is a fighter-cock which was very challenging. In Ekhane Akash Neel, I play a doctor who is crazily obsessed with the hero, a doctor in the same nursing home who is in love with someone else. It had many shades to it and was challenging to play. For the large screen, I enjoyed playing Prosenjit’s distraught wife in Bappaditya Bandopadhyay’s Houseful which did not do well so went unseen by most. The other two are a brief role in Sekhar Das’ Kaler Rakhal and Byomkesh’s wife in Byomkesh Bakshi.
– Shoma A. Chatterji