Exclusive WBRi Kolkata Bangla Radio Interviews, Reviews, Features & Profiles

Tollywood Hero Saurav talks about debut Bengali movie PIRITI KATHALER ATHA (2011) - Interview

[New Tollywood Hero SAURAV in Debut Film PIRITI KHATHALER ATHA]Germantown, MD, Feb 28, 2011 (Washington Bangla Radio) Saurav plays the lead role in his debut Bangla film, Piriti Kanthaler Atha (2011). The movie has been a big hit in Kolkata. In an exclusive interview for WBRi, Saurav talks with Arijit Chakraborty.

Piriti Kanthaler Atha is produced by Niranjan Mistry and released under the banner of Arati Chitram 2009. The film is directed by Reshmi Mitra (interview) of Bhalobasha Zindabad fame and stars Saurav, Riddhima, Debika Mukherjee, Biplab Chatterjee, Shakuntala Barua and others. Malay Bandopadhyay (interview) has written the story, screenplay and dialog of the film. The Bengali film songs are penned by Gautam Susmit and music is by Pinak Bhattacharya. The film released in theaters across Kolkata on Feb 18, 2011.

Singer Bisakh Jyoti - Saregamapa Singing Superstar Finalist From Kolkata (Interview)

Bisakh Jyoti Majumdar - Bengali Singer From KolkataWashington DC, Feb 27, 2011 (Washington Bangla Radio) Bisakhjyoti Majumdar - who is popularly known as Bisakh Jyoti - is a rapidly upcoming song writer, music composer, music director and singer from Calcutta. Bisakh Jyoti is the playback singer for the title song of Bollywood superhit film No Problem (2010), which was also his first Bollywood venture. He was the 2007 Zee Bangla Sa Re Ga Ma Pa second runner up and the 2010 Zee TV Sa Re Ga Ma Pa 2nd runner-up, and the only Bengali singer in that contest to make it to the top three among the hundreds of thousands of contestants. Arijit Chakraborty of WBRi chats with Bisakhjyoti in this interview with Washington Bangla Radio.

Interview: Danseuse-Actress Soumili Biswas (Teen Tanaya, Sudhu Tomake Chai, Kanchanbabu) talks about her career in Bengali films

[Bengali Actress Soumili Biswas]Washington DC, Feb 27, 2011 (Washington Bangla Radio) Soumili Biswas is an established dancer and actress currently working out of Tollywood (the Calcutta Bengali film industry). Aalo (DVD), her first feature film, was released in 2003. Her acting career, however, started when she a 9th grade student with Shimarekha  - a television serial. Other credits include hosting Syllabus-e Nei, a non-fiction TV program aired on Tara Bangla channel, and Bengali movies like Gerakol (DVD), Sangram (DVD), Bajimat (DVD), Agnisapath, U-Turn, Agnisakkhi, and most recently Teen Tanaya, a one-film trilogy based on Rabindranath Tagore's poems, in which she plays the role of Camellia. At the time of this post, at least two more of her films are in the final stages before release.

Arijit Chakraborty talks to Soumili in this informal chit-chat with the beautiful and talented Bengali actress on Washington Bangla Radio.

Here are a few more pictures of Soumili.

Bengali Actress Soumili Biswas Soumili BiswasTollywood Kolkata Bengali Movie Actress Soumili BiswasSoumili Biswas

Director Reshmi Mitra talks about Bengali films Pirit Kathaler Atha, Mon Rage Onurage, Ektu Ushnotar Jonno (Interview)

[Tollywood Bengali Kolkata Film Piriti Khataler Atha Poster]Washington, DC, Feb 26, 2011 (Washington Bangla Radio) Film-maker Reshmi Mitra chats with Arijit Chakraborty in a live interview for WBRi. Ms. Mitra talks about her movies, prior work, and future plans. Of her previous movies, her incomplete dream “Char Odhdhay” based on the acclaimed story by Rabindranath Tagore is still the closest to her heart. Her previous movie, Bhalobasha Zindabad was satisfying to make because of its novelty and its realistic flavor. Her docu-features on Pramathesh Barua, Salil Chaudhury, the HIV/AIDS epidemic, junior artists in the movie business, and eunuchs have moved people, and herself, and remain some of her favorites.

Piriti Kanthaler Atha, her latest movie is getting rave reviews in Kolkata. Ms. Mitra attributes this to its appeal to the current, young generation because of the combination of its entertainment factor, original story line, freshness, realistic flavor, and relatability. The fight sequences are exquisitely coordinated and CG (computer graphics) is used effectively. Created by the famous fight master (action director) from Mumbai, Andali Pathan (who has directed action sequences for heroes like Akshay Kumar and Govinda), they have a fancy-ness (“chamak”) to them, while the songs, directed by Indian classical instrumental Santoor artist Pinak Bhattacharya are classical-based and sequenced according to the story line. The lyrics of the songs are penned by Gautam Sushmit.

Listen to Reshmi Mitra talk about her films via Washington Bangla Radio free on-demand audio broadcast service.


Interview: Film-maker Anindo Banerjee on Bengali Movie CHAPLIN (2011)

[ANINDYA BANERJEE - Tollywood Calcutta Bengali Movie CHAPLIN]Washington, DC, Feb 26, 2011 (Washington Bangla Radio) Film-maker Anindo Banerjee chats with Arijit Chakraborty in this informal and intimate chit-chat and presents us with a colorful sketch of his fascinating journey from the hallowed classrooms of Jadavpur University to the Bengali film Chaplin and beyond.

Listen to the free online radio broadcast of the interview exclusively from Washington Bangla Radio.


Interview: Writer Malay Bandopadhyay talks about Bengali films Paribartan, Piriti Kathaler Atha, Kache Acho Tumi, Dujone & more

[Malay Bandopadhyay]Malay debuted in feature films with resounding success with his friend Rajib Kumar in the director's chair with the blockbuster Dujone (2009) which starred Dev and Srabanti as the lead pair. Dujone was the directorial debut in feature films for Rajib as well. In this informal chit-chat with Arijit Chakraborty, Malay reveals quite a few interesting trivia, inlcuding the fact that one of today's leading Tollywood heroines - Srabanti - actually is his student and Malay was a private tutor of the actress!

Interview: Saibal Chakraborty - Producer of Tollywood Bengali supernatural horror films BHOY and BHOY 2

[Tollywood Kolkata Bengali Horror Movie BHOY Press meet]Germantown, MD, Feb 25, 2011 (Washington Bangla Radio) Saibal Chakrabarty is a well-known producer of movies in Kolkata's Tollywood Bengali film industry. He has produced Amar Bhalolaga Amar Bhalobasha and Fight 1:1, and his horror-thriller Bhoy and it's sequel Bhoy-2 are awaiting release at the time of this interview.

Living legend Lata Mangeshkar has performed a song in Amar Bhalolaga Amar Bhalobasha, thus singing for a Tollywood Bengali movie after sixteen years, and Saibal himself has sung a duet in the film with Lata-ji.

Arijit Chakraborty talks to Saibal in this audio broadcast of an informal chit-chat. Saibal has appeared in a dance number in Bhoy alongside Abhishek Chatterjee, as well sung a song as a playback singer for the movie, too.

Interview: Cricket Journalist Gautam Bhattacharya talks about SACH - his book on Sachin Tendulkar released in the USA

Sachin Tendulkar - Launch of book SACH by Gautam Bhattacharya
Sachin Tendulkar and others at the launch of Gautam Bhattacharya's book Sach

Mahendra Singh Dhoni, Rahul Dravid and Anil Kumble at SACH book launch
Gautam Bhattacharya, Mahendra Singh Dhoni, Rahul Dravid and Anil Kumble at SACH book launch
Pictures courtesy of Utpaal Sorkkar

Gautam Bhattacharya - Author of SACHWashington, DC, Feb 19, 2010 (Washington Bangla Radio) Renowned award-winning writer and sports journalist Gautam Bhattacharya talks to us from Dhaka, Bangladesh in this informal chit-chat with Arijit Chakraborty. At the time ths interview was recorded, Gautam was in Dhaka for the inaugural ceremony of the World Cup Cricket championship of 2011 which is jointly being hosted by India, Sri Lanka and Bangladesh. You will surely be infected with the cricket bug when you hear Gautam share his thoughts about the inauguration which featured a great, some may even say overdone, cultural extravaganza. The opening ceremony was of particular pride to Bengalees as Bangla songs like O Amar Desher Maati and Amar Sonar Bangla ("My golden bangla, I love you"- the national anthem of Bangladesh) were performed with people across many nations watching live. Gautam also shares with us his best educated guesses on what might transpire in this Cricket World Cup, but, needless to say, anything can happen in the game of cricket.

Gautam Bhattacharya has recently written a book titled Sach about the iconic Indian batsman Sachin Tendulkar, a man who dreamed big, stretched his arms towards the sky and reached the summit. Sachin is applauded the world over for his cricketing feats and the person he is. This book, however, is not just another tome on Sachin. The book sizzles with new features, and a foreword by Mahendra Singh Dhoni. As Gautam puts it in this interview, Sach - the title of his book - is not just a nick name of Sachin, the word also means "the truth". In the book, a record 83 individuals, all path-breakers in their own right speak out on what Sachin means to them. If Asha Bhosle calls him 'God's apna aadmi', and Kapil Dev wants him 'to stand as tall as Mahatma Gandhi', Viv Richards gives him '10 upon 10'. Taking the reader through Sachin's journey of life, Gautam steps boldly on what has been 'forbidden' ground till now - the controversy surrounding the erstwhile Indian coach Greg Chappell, who breaks his silence on Sachin after four long years. The high-point of this must-have book is a set of 40 never-before-asked questions put to Sachin by Gautam.

Sach is available for purchase online in both USA via Amazon.com and India via Flipkart.com using the links in this exclusive interview-feature on Washington Bangla Radio.

Interview - Rohit Kulkarni - Pitch Of Dreams: Cricket In America | Documentary on the past, present and future of Cricket in USA

Rohit KulkarniGermantown, Maryland, Feb 17, 2011 (Washington Bangla Radio) Rohit Kulkarni is the head of Multimedia of the South Asia division at Voice Of America, with over fifteen years of hands-on experience in Television production. Like most Indians (and people from the British Commonwealth nations), Rohit is a passionate fan of the game of Cricket. It is but natural that Rohit's vast experience in film-making and his passion for Cricket should come together, and the result is a fascinating documentary on Cricket in the United States of America.

Titled "Pitch Of Dreams - Cricket In America", the film documents the past, present and future of the game in the US. A fruit diligent research and many hours of travel with a camera, the film is a true labor of love. The journey reveals quite a few surprising facts about the game of Cricket in America - and Rohit shares with us some trivia that are surely going to surprise you as well while he talks to Marian Chakraborty of Washington Bangla Radio about the film.

Singer-Composer Suvodeep Mukherjee talks to Soumitra Talukdar - Extempore Performances and Interview

Subhojit MukherjeeCalcutta, Feb 14, 2011 (Washington Bangla Radio) On behalf of Washington Bangla Radio , Soumitra Talukdar talks to Suvodeep Mukherjee in an exclusive video interview with entertaining extempore performances.

Actress Rachita Chauhan (Bhattacharya) Talks about Bengali movies Chaplin, Rang Milanti, Uro Chithi and more: Interview

[Actress Rachita Bhattacharya]Germantown, Maryland, Feb 13, 2011 (Washington Bangla Radio) Rachita Chauhan née Bhattacharya is a rapidly upcoming actress in Indian cinema and has recently appeared in Yogesh Mittal's Hindi film Yeh Faasley (2011) with Anupam Kher, Pawan Malhotra, Sudha Chandran, Seema Biswas and others. Among her widely anticipated Bengali films, Kamaleshwar Mukherjee's (interview) Uro Chithi, Kaushik Ganguly's (interview) Rang Milanti and Anindya Banerjee's Chaplin are awaiting release. Susmita Dasgupta caught up with Rachita in Kolkata in this informal chit-chat where Rachita talks about her background and films.

Apratim Mukhopadhyay: Singer-Songwriter-Composer From Kolkata

Apratim MukhopadhyayGermantown, Maryland, Feb 12, 2011 (Washington Bangla Radio) Apratim Mukhopadhyay is a Kolkata-based modern Bengali singer-songwriter, musician, poet,  TV presenter, and Entrepreneur.

Subhomoy Mukherjee has an informal chit-chat with Apratim in this audio interview presentation that also features some songs performed by Apratim.

Listen to Cricket World Cup 2011 Song by Kolkata Band KAYA

Washington DC, USA, Feb 12, 2011 (Washington Bangla Radio) The acclaimed folk-rock fusion band KAYA from Kolkata, India has released their World Cup Cricket 2011 song for the enjoyment of Indians across the world.

This song is also being aired by 94.3 Radio One and Radio Misty in India.

Listen to Band Kaya's Cricket World Cup 2011 song exclusively online via Washington Bangla Radio USA.



Interview: Anik Dutta - Director, Bengali Movie BHUTER BHABISHYAT (2012): Discerning Audience Is Welcome To Read Between Lines

ANEEK DUTTA, Writer-Director - Bengali Film Bhuter Bhabishyat (2011)Germantown, Maryland, Feb 5, 2011 (Washington Bangla Radio) Anik Dutta is the director of the Kolkata Bengali film Bhooter Bhobisshot which will, in all probability, continue and expand on the spectacular streak of fabulous Bengali films started last year by a new crop of smart young film-makers. The story, script and lyrics are also Anik's. Bhuter Bhabishyat is Anik Dutta's first full-length feature film. Anik is presently involved in post-production for the film.

In this candid but informal chat with Subhomoy Mukherjee, Anik Dutta - who is a renowned film-maker in the advertising world - dwells upon the similarities and differences between ad films and full-length feature films, and in his unique witty way describes the challenges and opportunities drawing similarities with one-day cricket versus test matches. He also makes it very clear that he never just wanted to make any film - but wanted to make a film that he would himself love to watch as well as offer a reasonable chance for the producer to recover the investment.

Bhuter Bhobissot
A shooting still from Bhooter Bhobissot

Anik talks about a remarkable convergence of events that quite suddenly made it possible to start making his first full-length feature. With his keen insight, he describes and contrasts various artistic and commercial aspects of film-making in Kolkata with Bollywood or other regions in India.

Of course, Anik talks at length about the film Bhuter Bhabishyot and provides us glimpses of it from the director's perspective. Among the various old mansions in Calcutta in various states of dilapidation exists Chowdhury Palace - a property under dispute and pretty much not cared for other than being rented out to film production companies as a shooting location. The ghosts who live in the mansion are happy - they do not complain much about the short disturbances caused by film crews. Things take a serious turn when a promoter gets control of the property and plans on demolishing it in favor of a new construction - thus threatening the supernatural residents with homelessness. Also a film unit arrives there for shooting, and facing multiple threats including eviction, it looks like the ghosts have no option but to try to hold on to their residence with all resources they have.

Bhuter Bhobishyot  has all the ingredients of a successful commercial film, says Anik - used in a humorous way that stands a very good chance of resonating with the masses. Anik also subtly hints at the presence of deeper layers of interpretation of the film and welcomes the discerning audience to read between the lines, though he jokingly says "if I wanted to send a message, I would have sent SMS' (text messages on mobile devices)".

Anik shares with us his thoughts on attempting to categorize films (including his own) into urban or rural genres - he correctly observes it is incorrect to assume folks in rural Bengal are any less capable of visual arts comprehension than their urban counterparts (the reverse is probably closer to reality, given all the visually rich performing arts forms still actively indulged in at the suburbs and villages).

All in all, you will spend a wonderful time, as we did, listening to Anik speak in his own erudite and witty way. Please join us in wishing Anik Dutta, his crew and cast, spectacular success and continuation of the resurgence in Bengali film.

Actress Swastika Mukherjee in a still from BHUTER BHOBISHYOT
Actress Swastika Mukherjee in a still from Bhuter Bhabishyat

Interview: PUJA PAL - The Young and Fast Rising Tollywood Bengali Movie Actress

[Tollywood Bengali Film Actress POOJA PAUL]Germantown, Maryland, Feb 5, 2011 (Washington Bangla Radio) Pooja Pal is a very young and promising actress from Kolkata who has just started appearing in Bengali feature films. With support and inspiration from her mother, Puja is an accomplished dancer from a very young age, and it was her on-stage appearances as a danseuse that led to her being offered roles in Bengali movies. Arijit Chakraborty caught up with Pooja and in this informal chit-chat Pooja talks about her background and films and shares with us stories from behind the camera.

After quite a few successful appearances in ad films and modeling assignments, actress Pooja Paul debuted in the Tollywood Bangla movie industry with a "item number" (an entertaining song and dance sequence frequently used in Indian commercial cinema for interludes) in Gobindadeb Krishna Haldar's Tumi Kaar. Subsequently, her debut as a full-fledged actress was with her role of Goddess Mangalchandi (a form of Goddess Kali) in Gobindadeb Krishna Haldar's AMAR SATHI (2010) alongside Karan, Pamela, Sumanta Mukhopadhyay, Dipankar De, Dolon Ray, Chaitali Dutta Burman, Mita Chattopadhyay and others.

Her next film after Amar Sathi is Joddha directed by Khokhon Chakrabarty co-starring Abhishek Chatterjee, Soumitra Chatterjee, Rama Prasad Banik, Nimu Bhowmick, Mrinal Mukherjee and others. Joddha - also known as Abahelito Mukti Joddha - is a patriotic film, and it is quite possible it will be released around one of India's independence commemorative holidays in 2011.

Pooja Pal subsequently appears in Shibprosad Chakrabarty (Khokhon) directed Ajo Bhalobashi Tomake co-starring Raj, Pragya, Bibek, Anamika Saha, Mrinal Mukherjee, Subhasish Mukherjee, Kanchan Mullick and others and even features Raza Murad who will be seen in a Bengali film after a long time playing the part of Bhootnath. The film deals with modern youth and post-marital issues in the light of pre-marital affairs and more, and is shot in Bengal and Sikkim.

Listen to our exclusive audio interview broadcast of Tollywood Bengali Movie actress Puja Pal.


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