December 5, 2010 (Calcutta Tube): Bengali Film Star Prosenjit Chatterjee is experimenting with roles these days. Whether it is ‘Autograph’ or ‘Tara’ he is giving something new to his audience. Tollywood superstar Prosenjit Chatterjee interacted with press in an informal session about himself and his upcoming movie ‘Moner Manush’ on Friday. IBNS correspondent Supriyo Hazra was on the spot. Excerpts :
When did you decide to portray the character of Lalon Fakir in ‘Moner Manush’?
It is a great experience. It was basically for Rabindranath Tagore that Lalon gained so much popularity. I knew this much. But after reading the book by Sunil Gangopadhyay I felt that if this can be a film it will be good. Then I heard from Gautam da (director Gautam Ghosh) that he was planning a film on him. Then one day we met, he asked me to find some time. I told him i will give time for the movie. And then I got involved with the movie and the character deeply.
Speak something on how you prepared for the movie?
I have already said about it a lot of time and I hope many of you know about it. Actually, for six months I kept myself absolutely free from other involvements. I took myself to an entirely new world. I am not a methodical actor but an emotional actor. I did the preparation in my own way. It was difficult and challenging. My family supported me a lot. Everybody did it during that period. So i could easily motivate my soul outside.
Please share with us about the songs portrayed on you in this movie.
The songs portrayed on me are sung by a Bangladeshi singer Latif. He is a traditional singer who actually sings under the tree, unlike the professional singers, His style is completely opposite and different.
What was the most challenging part while portraying this character?
Actually I have to do a character about which there are not much research materials. There is only one picture, that too of his old age. So my character expands a pan of history from young age to old age. It’s a long journey. So I had to work hard. His society was completely different from us. I slept on ‘madur’ (mattress) for three to four months. I did not wear formal shirts; I tried to acquaint myself to his life as I do not belong to that life.
Which character was difficult for you to portray- Arun Chatterjee or Lalon Fakir?
I feel Arun is different from Lalon completely. This is completely different where I am trying to establish a character. Arun was a created character. But this man was a multi faceted man. Playing his role is a real challenge for an actor. I have learnt a lot while doing this character. I have learnt to forgive man more easily than before after performing Lalon’s character. I was taught to forgive man in this 6-7 months. I feel Lalon should be an inspiration to today’s young men. He believed in small-scale industry, he believed in free sex. Such a positive thinker he was. At the same time he had such wonderful creations.
If this role was offered to you 20 years back, would you have taken the challenge?
Actually, I think nobody would have offered me that role at that time, because of the long span of life that the character features. But may be I would have taken up the challenge.
How much confident you are about the success of the movie?
‘Moner Manush‘ will work great. It will do well in both villages as well as cities. And especially people in Bangladesh too will love this movie.
Do you think that this movie is your ‘best one’?
This cannot be called the best one. Actually it is too tough to say as I am going to act in more films in future. You have to understand that I have done films like ‘Doshar’, ‘Utsav’, ‘Autograph’ and others, but surely one of my favourite films.
Do you feel that younger generation is getting attracted towards watching Bengali movies these days and you are playing a crucial role in it?
Not only youngsters but also middle aged people are getting attracted towards Bengali movie. The young generations want to see something sensible. It is important how you promote the movies and touch them. The promotion is really important. Young children have also changed the mind set.
Is there any character that you dream to play in future?
There are various historical characters that I want to do. But I also want to do the character of ‘Jalshaghar’. Few characters from Bengali novels are also my favourite which I will love to portray. I will also like to play characters like ‘godfather’, maybe a psychopath killer.
Bengali film is doing good business these days, what do you feel about this transformation?
Bengali films in the past also used to do good market than many Hindi movies. If a successful Hindi movie was earning Rs.100 in the East then at that time a Bengali film used to earn Rs. 200. But media never highlighted that. Now they are doing it, they are showcasing a different perception altogether. And changes are becoming clear.