Actors Swastika Dutta and Debasish Mondal talk about their web series Johny-Bonny
They also share thoughts about their individual roles
Thrillers have become increasingly popular on OTT platforms over the past few years, but Bengali series Johny-Bonny explores shade of mystery from a different angle. It is not just another regular action packed cop-drama but, a psychological journey of a rookie policeman against all odds. Klikk’s 19th venture in series format, Johny-Bonny features television actress Swastika Dutta, Debasish Mondal and Ankit Majumder in the lead roles alongside veteran filmmaker and actor Kamaleshwar Mukherjee. The series also smoothly accommodates the theme of chess in its fabric, in a series of challenges, and dualities such as the good and evil. We catch up with Swastika and Debasish for a quick chat:
What defines Johny and Ankhi in Johny-Bonny?
Debasish: I portray the role of a rookie policeman formally known as Janardan Das, and fondly called Johny by his loved ones. This particular series delves deep into the psyche of a cop, and his daily turmoil that is generally overlooked. Johny tries his best to balance between his professional and private lives, but often finds himself in a tough spot as ups and downs in his professional life affects his personal space and vice versa. He’s one of those people who tries to put his best foot forward at the workplace, and attempts to remain as sincere as possible despite external conflicts and interferences. It’s all about exploring the emotional and mental upheavals of a cop amidst a corrupted parallel system.
Swastika: Ankhi represents the personal life of Johny and his apprentice, Bonny is my elder sister’s son. Ankhi is that balancing factor in Johny’s life who tries to manage and tackle different aspects on the personal front. She understands, and catches some of Johny’s white lies that he spurts out to save Ankhi from any additional pressure. However, Ankhi chooses to ignore most of these so as to not affect Johny adversely. She, along with Bonny, help him more than often with their thoughts about his cases, and in turn helps him solve them while remaining at the back end themselves.
OTT platforms are flooded with thrillers recently, how does Johny Bonny stand out?
Debasish: I think we are more used to cop-dramas that are action based, but the fights here are more mental and logical. There are action sequences, of course, but even then they are planned not only for entertainment purposes. Johny’s internal conflicts get reflected through his actions, and this series is all about exploring the human experiences of a cop.
How did you prepare for these roles?
Swastika: Particularly for a thriller, it is important to maintain a sense of subtlety since the words and actions demand to be cerebral. I had decided in the very first moments of the script reading that I will make Ankhi extremely subtle. Coincidentally, Ankhi also maintains a very natural and subtle look on screen and I mostly shot for this series without any make up. That actually came as a sweet benefit since I didn’t have to spend hours in the make-up room.
Debasish: For me, it is important to connect to people around me when I prepare for a role. Apart from this, I have tried to remain as true to the script to breathe life into Johny.
Swastika, you are lately more active on OTT as compared to television. Do you have plans of working on television again soon?
Swastika: Well honestly, television defines my career but for now I am trying to explore as many shades of characters that I can. I feel it is important for an actor to experiment with character shades both positive and negative. For now, I am just enjoying my freelancing period across platforms but I’ll definitely come back to television in due course of time.