Even non-Bengalis will connect with my film: Anjan Dutt


New Delhi, June 28 (IANS) It's a satire on the Bengali community living outside Kolkata. But filmmaker Anjan Dutt is confident that his film "The Bong Connection" will connect with all, especially urban youth.

The film, slated for release July 6, tells the story of two young Bengali men, one living in New York and the other in Kolkata but aspiring to go to Texas, who are ethnically similar but radically different in their views of life.

"It's the story of second generation Bengalis living across the world. How they go about their day-to-day activities, sometimes craving for that feeling of being at home and at times feeling that holding on to their culture holds no meaning in today's times," Dutt told IANS in a telephone interview.

After his films like "Bada Din" and "Bow Barracks Forever", this is Dutt's first crossover film. It has been shot in Texas and Kolkata.

Brushing aside queries on the similarity of his movie with Mira Nair's recently released movie "The Namesake", Dutt said he had completed his film before Nair but couldn't release it because of difficulty in finding a distributor.

"Moreover, 'The Bong Connection' talks about the second generation Bengali community living abroad as well as in India while 'The Namesake' was about the first generation Bengali community moving offshore," he explained.

Having earned rave reviews at all the film festivals where it was screened - in New Delhi, Goa, Dubai and New York - Dutt said he has got a lot of appreciation from the non-Bengali community.

"I have had a lot of non-Bengalis coming up to me after the movie and saying that it felt as if the film was based on them. That's because while the movie revolves around the new face of Bengalis and Bengal across the world, the essence of the film appeals to all," he said.

With model-turned-actor Shayan Munshi in the lead, it has Parambrata Chattopadhyay, Raima Sen and Peeya Raichoudhury in the other key roles.

"Shayan was a natural choice because I wanted a Bengali guy living outside Kolkata and who speaks faulty Bengali as my lead man," Dutt said.

And what about Rahul Bose? "Rahul is old for the role. The hero has to be young," he replied.

Raima Sen, Dutt added, was also an obvious choice because she is a typical Bengali girl who represents the open, dynamic and brave city-bred Bengali girl of today.

On the music front, a remixed version of Rabindra Sangeet and a few other Bengali numbers that are popular in clubs feature in the film.

"I was a little wary of the reactions of people at the film festivals because abroad everyone wants to see the ethnic India in an Indian film and here is a very urban film in English. But the response was great and I am relieved.

"Hence I can say that Bengalis or non-Bengalis, everyone will love to laugh at the satirical comedy that this film is all about," said Dutt.

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