Special: Tollywood superstar Jeet is back on the big screen ahead of Eid with Raavan
The movie sees Jeet playing a very dark role
Any festive occasion calls for on-screen celebrations too with some purely commercial films wooing the audience. And Tollywood too has been churning out such potboilers for years now, with superstars like Jeet, Prosenjit Chatterjee and Dev leading the show. Setting aside the glum that loomed over the entertainment industry for the past two years, Tollywood is ready with two big releases this year around Eid and Jeet's much-anticipated movie, Raavan, is one of them.
Starring Jeet in the title role, this film also stars actors such as Tnusree Chakraborty (who looks menacing in the role of police personnel), Kharaj Mukherjee, Shataf Figar and debutante Lahoma Bhattacharya. Directed by Tamil filmmaker MN Raj, this out and out commercial potboiler sees Jeet play a suave and friendly professor, Ram Mukherjee. We also see him play the very sinister character Raavan, who sets about to avenge all the evils and wrongdoing happening around us. The catch is whether Raavan and Ram are the same person or not.
As the film releases today, we catch up with Jeet about the movie and his future projects. Excerpts from the chat:
With the trailer view touching almost 3 million, you must be very excited about Raavan?
Yes, the kind of feedback we are getting post the release of the film's trailer, we are really happy and excited, more so, because we really tried to offer the audience something very visually different and unusual both in terms of looks and characterisation. And I am so grateful to the audience and the fans for accepting the grey character that I am playing so well.
How did you prepare for this very dark and intense character called Raavan?
I have always wanted and worked towards creating or bringing something new to the table. I think I always somehow feel responsible to raise the bar of the industry and take it ahead qualitatively by always experimenting and coming up with something unique. Raavan too is a product of that thought process.
The character started playing out in my mind from the first day of the script narration and it got sketched out with further script-reading sessions. I thought about how to approach the look and go about the dialogue delivery and of course, certain things and improvisations happened spontaneously on sets as we shot the film.
And the graphic and technical approach of the film looks so good...
The entire credit for this goes to the in-house team of Grassroot Entertainment. Also, we have many people on board this new who are new or are working for the first time in the Bengali film industry, like our director MN Raj, our choreographer Imran Sardhariya and action master Ravi Varma and newcomer Lahoma Bhattacharya.
Even the posters are being made by a new team and this whole idea emanates from the thought of how to get better with each film.
How was it shooting with newcomer Lahoma?
It's always wonderful to work with new people who have fire in their belly and an insatiable hunger to do better work. Newcomers always have a lot to prove and an urge to work on themselves and I appreciate that a lot because I am like that too, even now. I treat each of my films as my debut film and try to better myself each day in every possible way.
How much do you feel has Tollywood evolved?
We are seeing changes everywhere and we have to accept the change and move on. I really salute the way the South film industry has evolved but it's a result of many years of perseverance and discipline that can't be achieved overnight. I also like the culture of cinema there- it is beautiful and they treat each movie deeply and intensely which is something we should learn too.
Tell us about your future projects?
Well, I am now busy with my next film, Chengiz which also stars budding talent, Susmita Chatterjee. It's an out and out entertaining film that covers a span of years from the 80s to the current times. It is a super action thriller but I can't reveal any more right now. Aso, my television TV reality show Ismart Jodi (telecast on Star Jalsha) keeps me very busy and I am enjoying it thoroughly despite the hectic schedule.
Raavan is playing in theatres now.