Anjan Dutta and Rituparno Ghosh on Chitrangada (2012): All actors are tentative in their performances


Click Play to watch Anjan Dutta & Rituparno Ghosh on Chitrangada (2012) Bengali movie

Chitrangada 2012 Bengali film posterIn this video recorded during the press meet on Chitrangada at Hotel Hindusthan International on August 24, Anjan Dutta and Rituparno Ghosh describe how their new Indian Bengali feature film Chitrangada started off over three days of working together in a hospital. Also for the first time, in the shots that Rituparno acts, the baton of the director was completely transferred to assistant director Sanjoy Nag (Bunty) and cinematographer Avik Mukhopadhyay, thus leaving Rituparno without the benefit of his own direction. Sanjoy and Avik had carefully noted Rituparno's requirements during pre-production. While Avik concentrated on visual details, Sanjoy took up the director's role, one of his goals being to match the acting performances with visuals in Avik's camera work.

Anjan Dutta: Since the story of Chitrangada is pretty complex, the acting style of all actors in unpredictable. The performaces come across as non-linear - the actors try to say things or sometimes stop even before saying what they want to say. We don't see much of acting like this. While shooting and dubbing for Chitrangada, Anjan-da felt the entire approach to acting is very different in the film. This is driven by the subject (of homosexuality) of the story, and is about change. True to the story, the actors portray changes and gradually reveal themselves. Anjan-da says he thinks this is what actor-director Rituparno Ghosh really wanted - a certain amount of tentativeness and unpredictibility that even led to the actors not really being sure of themselves even during shooting. Anjanda found this very interesting. A powerful actor and award-winning film-maker himself, Anjanda says the performances in Chitrangada are nothing like the way he has acted before or asked others to act in his own films.

Rituparno Ghosh: The subject of the film itself demanded such tentativeness. Since the film's characters are in an indeterminate space in a state of constant fluidity trying to manage self-conflicting ideas and thoughts, no cast member has acted in a definite or cocksure way. Each actor has performed tenatively in his or her own way. The performances that Anjan Dutta, Anasua Majumder, Titoda (Dipankar De) and others ultimately delivered will occupy a place of their own in the history of Bengali cinema, if not Indian cinema. Anasua and Dipankar De play parents of Rituparno's character. They represent very familiar usual educated well-off Bengali parents, but the way they interpret their roles has definitely added a different dimension to the film.