Dubai: The who’s who of Tollywood, as the Bengali film industry is referred to, joined hands in producing a feel good 13-minute short film ‘Jhor theme jabe ekdin’ (The storm will pass some day) on coronavirus awareness and to raise funds for the badly hit daily wage earners of the small industry. The film was screened on a regional TV news channel on the Bengali New Year’s Day (April 14) and is available on YouTube.
The film follows a thin storyline – Rukmini Maitra (one of the upcoming actresses) who plays herself - is stranded in her Kolkata flat during the ongoing nationwide lockdown as her father is seriously sick in his ancestral home in another part of the state. The other flat owners – played by a host of the A-listers of the regional industry, keep emerging from their flats as themselves and share their concern about Rukmini not being able to reach her father. There seems to be much camaraderie among them as they help the senior citizens residing in their complex by keeping an eye on their daily essentials and supply of medicines.
Rituparna Sengupta, Koel Mullick, Mimi Chakraborty, Nusrat Jahan, Subhashree Ganguly, Parambrata Chatterjee, Abir Chatterjee – all play cameos in the mix. Prosenjit Chatterjee, the senior pro of the Bengali film industry who plays yet another resident there, is approached and he eventually works the phones and organises a police escort car for the stranded girl to take her all the way to Bankura to be with her ailing father in time (played by veteran actor Paran Bandopadhyay).
All's well as the father also recovers in the end and the film predictably delivers a social message of lending a shoulder to others in need alongwith following the dos and don’ts to beat the pandemic.It ends with a message from Dev, the actor-MP saying how all the actors shot their bits without stepping out of home before it went for editing. ‘’It’s a small effort from the actors’ community to do our bit for the daily wage earners of our small industry who are without any work now,’’ Dev says at the end. Other actors like Saswata Chatterjee, Jeet and Priyanka Sarkar also addressed the viewers with messages on putting up an united front to fight the virus.
''It was really a rewarding experience and I must thank all the actors for agreeing to do this. We (myself and Padmanabha Dasgupta) took just two days to create the concept and worked out a script in one day flat. I was in touch with the cast through video conferencing and gave them the lines - and they in turn shot their scenes by family members on i-phones and sent them back to me,'' Arindam Sil, director of the film, told Gulf News over phone.
''Sanglap Bhowmick, my editor, did the whole job from home while Bickram Ghose, the renowned musician, did the background score similarly,'' Sil, a frontranking director in the industry, said.
The film is conceptualised by West Bengal chief minister Mamata Banerjee and produced by Camelia Film Productions. ‘Didi,’ as Banerjee is nicknamed in her state, had also written the lyrics of the theme song 'Jhor theme jabe ekdin' – sung by Suman Chattopadhyay.