Tolly stars Dev and Rukmini on their Puja release, Password and more
After Kidnap that was released this Eid, superstar Dev is back in theatres to thrill audiences with Password, an edgy film on cybercrime, the first of its kind in Bengali cinema. Starring Rukmini Maitra, Parambrata Chatterjee, Paoli Dam and Aadrit besides Dev, this movie which released two days ago, has already become a conversation starter among the tech-savvy youth. We caught up with Dev and Rukmini for a chat on the film, and their Puja plans. Excerpts from the conversation:
Dev, were you sure from the beginning that a film like Password would work for a Puja release?
Yeah, I was pretty much sure. Dev Entertainment Ventures has always taken risks when it comes to films — be it doing a film on a boxer (Champ) or shooting for real sequences 36,000 ft high up in the sky for Cockpit — we have always taken the risk of exploring new subjects. I believe the content of a film should resonate with today’s time and crises. We are at least 10 to 15 years behind the other film industries. When Mumbai is presenting a film like War during the Pujas, Tollywood too should have equally good films with great looks and graphics to contend with. Besides the extensive research that has gone into making a cybercrime flick, a lot of attention has also been given to computer graphics, which was equally important for Password. We also took on board some of the best people like Abhik for lights.
Rukmini, you have always chosen films with a lot of care. All your roles in the previous four movies are different from each other. What made you take the risk with Nisha Chatterjee?
It’s not a very conscious decision, but the credit goes to my directors, who could perceive me in such varied roles. That said, I have always wanted to do a role where I could fight, be aggressive and show my prowess, so I literally lived my dreams while shooting for Password. In fact, while shooting for the song Trippy Lagey, my legs were so bruised due to some action sequences that I had to apply more makeup on my legs than my face! The whole drive gave me an adrenaline rush, since this is how I want to see women on screen, who are rough and tough, yet vulnerable. Nisha has so many emotions to her, and that’s how all humans are in real life. Moreover, in this movie, I got to romance someone else other than Dev for the first time, so it was fun and a total learning experience.
The cast too was very well-chosen...
Dev: Yes, now people can understand why I cast Parambrata and Paoli. I needed actors who can really emote well, for this film.
And you too simply rocked your part of an investigating officer...
Rukmini: Believe me, Dev with a moustache didn’t have to act at all, he absolutely looked his part in this movie, and I am not biased when I say this.
Dev: For me, more than acting and producing, the movie was the real challenge. I lived with this film for nearly a year before it went on floors, so by the time I was acting, I knew everything by heart.
So, what’s your takeaway from Password?
Dev: I have become more aware of my phone, laptop and the WiFi connections I use. Often, we do not pay heed to the agreement before ticking off ‘I agree’ to a particular app or open WiFi networks. You know, all your data and pictures can be accessed by them...
Rukmini: Even if your phone is kept by itself, a hacker can record all your conversations, and even video you, if they can hack your personal WiFi IP address. It’s that scary!
Dev: So, now I uninstall all the apps that I don’t use, and I don’t use any open WiFi networks.
Rukmini: I keep deleting pictures from my gallery, and use an offline hard disk for saving any beautiful memory. And most importantly, I do not save my debit or credit card on any app or site.
Dev: It’s high time there is a One Time Access kind of a system for apps too. Why should any app have 24x7 access to my phone’s or computer’s content?
You must be happy this time with the state government ensuring that Bengali films get good timings at standalone theatres and multiplexes?
I started the whole thing, and made my voice heard on social media — not as a Member of the Parliament, but as a producer, and I was also the voice on behalf of other producers. It’s very important to get an equal footing for Bengali films all through the year, for the first few days of their release, at least. Then you decide after the audience response. It’s not our intention either to hamper the business of hall owners. But there should be fair play, and we will fight towards it.
What are your plans for the next five days?
Dev: I will mostly be at home, tracking Password’s response.
Rukmini: I will have a good time chatting up with friends and family over good food.
Do you miss anything during the Pujas?
Dev: Yeah, I miss going to pandals and having bhog with others.
Rukmini: I miss serving Puja bhog and participating in dance shows in my neighbourhood Pujas. Visiting FD block Puja at Salt Lake was mandatory in our childhood, as we lived in Salt Lake. Even now, I make it a point to visit Ballygunge Cultural Puja at least once, since I have been doing this for so many years now.
Password to health:
Dev: Eat well and exercise, at least for an hour
Rukmini: A good laugh every day
Password to happiness:
Dev: Be good, be humble
Rukmini: Think positive and never pull someone down, but grow yourself instead
Password to success:
Dev: Hard work and only hard work
Rukmini: Determination and a strong will
Password to peace:
Dev: Don’t put your nose in others’ peace
Rukmini: I agree with that
Password to friendship:
Dev: Don’t be opportunistic
Rukmini: Unfiltered conversation
Password to love:
Dev: Give time.