In the News: 1940’s Calcutta Crime Solver

Hello Scholars! I found a link to an interesting interview about a new Detective television show set in 1940’s Calcutta!

Here’s an excerpt:

Byomkesh Bakshy! is Dibakar Banerjee’s most ambitious film

PTI March 30, 2015 | UPDATED 16:17 IST
“Why?” was the question that Dibakar Banerjee asked himself while embarking on the journey of adapting “Detective Byomkesh Bakshy!” as the youthful, dhoti-clad crime solver in the politically volatile era of 1940s Calcutta.

Something of a childhood dream, his next film is his most ambitious and yet the most difficult project.

The director, who has acquired the rights to Sharadindu Bandyopadhyay’s all Byomkesh stories, said his biggest motivation was the curiosity surrounding the unorthodox career choice of this young man in a time when jobs were rare to come by.

Despite its period setting, Dibakar believes, Byomkesh is a man of today. The director is confident that if the film succeeds, it will popularise a true-blue Indian icon as a franchise hero and bring the tradition of Bengal noir back in fashion.

The director, who started his cinematic journey with “Khosla Ka Ghosla” and went on explore diverse contemporary problems in his subsequent projects “Oye Lucky Lucky Oye”, “Love Sex Aur Dhokha” and “Shanghai”, said he wanted to begin Byomkesh’s journey from his first case.

“Detective Byomkesh Bakshy!” also stars Anand Tiwari and Swastika Mukherjee in principal roles. The movie, produced by Dibakar Banerjee Productions and Yash Raj Films, is set to release on April 3.

Here are the excerpts from an interview during his PTI visit:

Q: Why begin from the beginning in Byomkesh?
A: I wanted to stamp it with my own interpretation. When you go from a book to film, then in the film you can introduce many things. When I and Urmi Juvekar, the scriptwriter, sat down, the first question that we asked ourselves was ‘Why make Byomkesh?’ We realized that we wanted to make Byomkesh because we wanted to know why this young man, fresh out of college, would want to become a detective in 1940s. Why not become a clerk or choose any other profession because it is a very unorthodox choice.

Sharadindu has left certain things delightfully unsaid and that’s where a filmmaker comes, between the lines. Slowly, we realized that we wanted to tell the coming-of-age story of Byomkesh, the story of how he became what he became.

Q: You wanted to make the film for a long time. Was it difficult to hold on to the idea for so long?
A: I have always wanted to make it and knew that I will make it sooner or later. When you make films, you start believing in destiny a bit. No matter how hard you push, you can’t force it. There are too many variables involved for one puny human being to fathom. Films are vague; there are too many people involved, too much money and egos. One learns to be patient.

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