Bollywood actor Ronjini Chakraborty on playing a sex worker in ZEE5's Lalbazaar
Wanting to make a mark on the national platform, Ronjini Chakraborty made Mumbai her home soon after completing a course in acting from FTII Pune. Since then, she has worked in several ads, serials and films to sustain herself in the acting world until she got noticed and praised for her acts in films like Tumbbad and Article 15. “If it were the nineties, survival surely would have been an issue in a city with no connections. But with so many opportunities now, you can actually sustain if you keep up the hard work,” tells the congenial actor, who was a year’s junior to actors like Jaideep Ahlawat and Rajkummar Rao at FTII.
So far seen in only one Bengali film Abosheshey that released back in 2011, this Bengali beauty will be seen in a very interesting role in the web series Lalbazaar — a gripping tale of the underbelly of Kolkata — to be released both in Bengali and Hindi on ZEE5 this June 19. We had an interesting chat with the actor about the character she plays and more. Excerpts:
Tell us about your role in Lalbazaar.
When the casting team of ZEE5 offered me the role I found it extremely exciting. The character Farzana had a strange mix of strength and vulnerability due to the harsh times she was going through and despite being a sex worker she was a very responsible daughter looking after her father, who was unaware of her profession. What made this character even more interesting and layered was the fact that she worked as a spy for the police too.
How did you prepare yourself for this role?
I went through the script very rigorously to understand and portray Farzana organically. I am a spontaneous actor and go by the instincts, relying a lot on my director and the script. Sayantan Ghosal (director of Lalbazaar) had a clear view of what he wanted, which helped a lot.
Lalbazaar is your first series in Bengali. How was the experience? Are there any filmmakers in Bengal who interest you?
Though punctuality is an issue in Bengal, we had a great time working with a warm bunch of people. It would be great to work with Kaushik Ganguly and Srijit Mukherji.
Any such wish list in Bollywood?
Oh, there are many including Imtiaz Ali, Amar Kaushik, Anurag Kashyap and other new talents.
Your seniors Jaideep Ahlawat and Rajkummar Rao have really made it in Bollywood. Any fun memories with them in FTII?
Jaideep is extremely friendly, gentle, warm and helpful. Rajkummar was always very serious and studious type and never missed a single class. He rose early to attend physical training and yoga classes, which we would often give a miss.
What are the other projects you are a part of?
Lalbazaar is releasing and web series Raktanchal too released a few days back. The shooting for the second season of Raktanchal and third season of PA Girls will resume once the pandemic settles down and we get clear rules of shooting.