According to Bengali actor Prosenjit Chatterjee, who is looking for exciting roles with no regard to language and has appeared in almost 350 films over the course of four decades, reinventing the wheel in cinema may be “a little difficult.”
The actor is savoring the success of not one but two projects that came out at the same time last month: the Bengali feature “Shesh Pata” and the Prime Video series “Jubilee”. He portrays creative persons who are divided like the “north and south poles” in the titles.
In Vikramaditya Motwane's “Jubilee,” he played Srikant Roy, a moviegoer and cunning studio owner, while in Atanu Ghosh's “Shesh Pata,” Prosenjit played a famous author by the name of Balmiki Sengupta who now lives in obscurity.
“I'm savoring every second of this. It's not only because of “Jubilee,” but also because of “Shesh Pata,” in which I portray a writer who is a very different person than in “Jubilee.” In addition, there is “Jubilee,” where the protagonist is charismatic, powerful, and talented, said Prosenjit, 60, in an interview with PTI.
Every day, I want to reinvent myself. I want the audience to have fresh experiences. People have watched my 345 films, so it's becoming harder now that I've played so many different roles in the previous 8 to 10 years. What fresh information should I provide the audience right now? Everything has been a hardship for me, he said.
The actor, a native of Kolkata and the son of renowned filmmaker Biswajit Chatterjee, said that he tries to learn something new about filmmaking every day.
“If you work in this field, you must constantly learn new things. I often declare, “I am a student of cinema, and I live with cinema.” I can spend four to five hours with someone if they come to me for a half-hour and chat about a tale because I like discussing movies. I'm too invested in it, he said.
Prosenjit said he broke out of every mold he was put into. He is known for flitting over genres, media, and languages with works including “Moner Manush,” “Mahanayak,” “Chokher Bali,” and “Shanghai.”
“When I first entered Bangla film, people referred to me as a chocolate boy. They remarked, “He is just like his father.” But I want to escape that picture. I then began taking action. It felt like there had to be action in every movie.
“When I used to attend events, people would comment that he was making money by dancing, acting, etc. I believed that if I did anything, people would see me differently. The actor, who had his acting debut at the age of five with Hrishikesh Mukherjee's Bengali film “Chotto Jigyasa” in 1968, says that he began with black-and-white movies before moving on to color.
Srikant Roy, also known as Roy Babu in the Prime Video program, is often compared to Himanshu Rai and Guru Dutt, two of the trailblazing figures of Indian cinema's golden period. Prosenjit said that Motwane's assignment was to revive the “Indian godfather” in show business during the 1940s and 1950s.
The actor said that when filming a sequence for “Jubilee” in which people applaud his character Srikant Roy as he enters Roy Talkies, he was reminded of Guru Dutt's timeless film “Kaagaz Ke Phool” (1959).
“I had a dream about this… I love everything that has to do with Guru Dutt. The Indian godfather was emphasized further in Motwane's brief. He makes decisions. They don't end in peace, but everything this guy says must be carried out. The brilliance of “Jubilee” is how many different colours each character has. Although it is not a biopic, it has a wide range of personalities.
Prosenjit stated he would continue to work on projects that he finds appealing, regardless of the language. He will next be featured in Hansal Mehta's series “Scoop.”
“Something need to test me. It's not like I'm going to sign 10 Hindi movies right now. The persona must be fantastic; the language doesn't matter. With what I'm doing, I'm content. I make two to three movies a year; that has been my standard for the last ten years,” he said.
The actor wants to perform in Malayalam and Marathi movies. He admits to being a fan of Subodh Bhave and Fahadh Faasil.
“I want to work on Marathi and Malayalam movies. I'd want to collaborate with several fresh filmmakers, like Subodh Bhave and Sachin (Khedekar). I monitor (Fahadh) Faasil's output. I must see his OTT releases if they are available. It's fantastic to see him on television,” he remarked.