Debutant director Shabbir Mallick's Bhoot Chaturdashi is a scary thriller
"There's hardly any real scary movie that has been made in Tollywood in the recent past. Hence I thought it would be interesting to make one in the lines of Annabelle or The Conjuring," tells debutant filmmaker Shabbir Mallick, before the release of his film, Bhoot Chaturdashi, a spooky thriller revolving around four friends out to make a film, on May 17. Bhoot Chaturdashi -- which is Bengali equivalent of Halloween, celebrated on the eve of Kali Puja to ward off evil -- has been shot in ten days flat. The story of this film has been written by filmmaker Mainak Bhaumik whom Shabbir has assisted in films including Cholochitro Circus, Happy Pill, Bibaho Diaries and Generation Aami.
"I was thinking of making something unique and Mainak had this brilliant story ready. While scouting location at Bolpur (near Santiniketan), Aritra (screenplay writer of the film), Arindra (associate director) and Shabbir put together the script of the movie. "We shot it in 10 days and in fact, this is perhaps the fastest shot full-length feature release in Bengali," says Mallick about the 100-minute horror flick.The 32-year-old tells that the story revolves around how four friends Rono, Shreya, Pritha and Debu end up in a spooky location for a documentary shoot in Bolpur, and scary things unfurl.
"I have steered clear from turning this film into a hilarious horror flick from yesteryear by keeping things subtle and escalating the thrill part and scare element. The suspense has been kept intact to keep the audience at the edge of their seats," he says. For that, Shabbir, adds, background score, sound design and cinematography played vital roles. "The background score has been composed by Nabarun Bose and Tirthankar Majumdar has taken care of the sound design. The cinematography has been done by Manoj Karmakar, who has worked in several web series in Mumbai.
Apart from Bhaumik, Shabbir, who has been working in the Bengali film industry since 2010, has also assisted filmmakers Aparna Sen (Goynar Baksho), Raj Chakraborty (Bolo Dugga Mai Ki / Champ), Birsa Dasgupta (Obhishopto Nighty) and singer Arijit Singh for his upcoming film, Sa. The young filmmaker who is inspired by Anurag Kashyap, Imtiaz Ali and Rohit Shetty, apart from his mentor Mainak Bhaumik, is already working on two more scripts.
"I have a couple of ideas and currently working on both of them. One is a biopic on a Bengali icon and the other is a romcom with a contemporary twist," reveals Shabbir. Bhoot Chaturdashi stars four young actors including Aryann Bhowmick, Ena Saha, Soumendra Bhattacharya and Deepsheta Mitra and is produced by SVF.