Actor Sohini Sarkar talks about her first release of the year, Ei Ami Renu, and upcoming projects
If there's anyone among the female brigade of the new-age Tollywood actors who has a set audience looking forward to her films, it’s got to be Sohini Sarkar. Ever since her impressive debut in the year 2013 with films like Rupkotha Noy and Phoring, she has consistently built a great body of work including films like Jhumura, Cinemawala, Durga Sohay, Shob Bhooturey, Rajkahini, Vinci Da and Bibaho Diaries.
But it’s the series of superhit Byomkesh films, where she played the innocently flirty Satyabati opposite Abir Chatterjee’s Byomeksh, that has made her popular cutting across all sections of the audience. This year, she is back with Ei Ami Renu, a film based on the eponymous novel by Samaresh Mazumder, where she plays the titular role. We talk to her about the film that releases today and more. Excerpts.
Tell us about your role in Ei Ami Renu?
This film based on Samaresh Mazumder’s novel is set in the ’80s when the cellphone hadn’t yet invaded our lives. Romance still bloomed amidst lack of connectivity, when lovers separated by distance or otherwise kept in touch through letters. It was a different era altogether which rudely got interrupted by the sudden invasion of cellphones that consequently turned smart, leaving no scope for us to be apart for long.
The movie is about three characters caught in a web of complex emotions. So, to create such a period frozen in time itself was very difficult and when we started shooting, initially, it felt weird without the phone. But it slowly sank in that we were portraying a different time when Kolkata was still not decked up in blue and white, when there were no shopping malls or fashion sense or eating out. So many things were different, not only the absence of cellphones.
Can you relate to a romance without constant connection?
Honestly, I cannot. The kind of person that I am, I need to be in constant touch if I am romantically involved with someone, whether he is away in a different state or here. For me, out of sight means out of mind and I need to be connected.
Have you ever written love letters to anyone?
Yeah, a lot of them. In fact, during the lockdown too, I wrote a couple of them. Even if I stay together with my partner, I can still write love letters.
You will be working with Kaushik Ganguly again for his upcoming film Kabaddi Kabaddi. Tell us about your role and how are you preparing for it?
I am playing Seema, a girl from a small town in a muffasil area. Ritwick Chakraborty will be playing my brother who is an amateurish Kabbadi trainer and Arjun Chakrabarty plays Chanchal, his student. It’s again a very touching relationship story with Kabaddi as its backdrop. When I work with Kaushik Ganguly, there is no need to prepare for the role since he is such a good director and actor himself. I completely depend on his guidance and my instincts while working with him.
What are your other upcoming projects?
I have done Mandar where I play Lady Macbeth and there’s a psychological horror thriller with two new directors. Both are for OTT platform Hoichoi.
There’s also Agantuk...
Yes. Everyone including me is waiting for the film to release. It was supposed to release last year but got delayed due to the pandemic. I play an unusual role of a 70-year-old woman and makeup artist Somnath Kundu has done a splendid job with prosthetics.
Can you tell us about your diet and exercise regimens?
I have no specific diet and love to eat everything. I usually begin my day with lemon-infused warm water or a fresh gourd smoothie with a hint of ginger, lemon and cinnamon. Breakfast depends on my work schedule. If I have night shifts then the schedule gets disturbed and I skip breakfast. But otherwise, I have a late breakfast with fruits and a boiled egg or with rice and fish. Later I have some curd and I usually have my dinner by 8 pm. For dinner, I often have chicken stew with carrots and cabbage leaves.
Throughout the day I have lots of water, coconut water, fresh fruit juices and smoothies to keep myself hydrated. I also like a smoothie made of apple, cucumber and ginger during the summer. I go to the gym very rarely and only when I need to drastically lose a few kilos for any film. Otherwise, I like to walk and swim.
I rarely use facewash and remove makeup or dirt with face butter or olive oil. I always use night cream and sunscreen and have never done a facial in my life. I massage my hair with coconut or olive oil or mustard oil infused with gooseberry and fenugreek.
A few of my favourite things...
Fashion choices: I love the boho-chic or sporty look and like wearing jeans, shirts, harem pants, spaghetti tops and skirts
Five wardrobe essentials: A good pair of denim, a white shirt, sneakers, a nice kurti and a nice dress
Favourite accessories: Earrings and chunky watches
Most expensive buy: My car, Toyota Fortuner and watches
Beauty essentials always in your bag: A lip balm, hand cream and sunscreen
Comfort food: Steamed rice with potato, boiled egg, ghee and green chillies
Favourite drink: Coconut water or fresh fruit juices and smoothies
Hobbies: Gardening, cooking and decorating my home
Location courtesy: Angie's Washouse Cafe
PS: Are you a fan of Sohini Sarkar? Tell us which movies of Sohini are your favourite?