Superstar Jeet and Susmita Chatterjee on their Eid release Chengiz that's also coming out in Hindi

Set in the 90s era, this underworld movie sees Jeet paired opposite newcomer Susmita Chatterjee
Jeet and Susmita
Jeet and Susmita

Among the handful of stars in Tollywood whose names still sell tickets at the box office, actor Jeet definitely features foremost. One of the last superstars in Bengal, Jeet’s films are well-crafted potboilers with larger-than-life plots that offer the audience a wholesome treat of romance, action and all emotions in between. This Eid too, his film Chengiz offers all that and more. Chengiz also happens to be Jeet’s first Bengali movie that’s releasing nationwide in Hindi too. Set in the 90s era, this underworld movie sees Jeet paired opposite newcomer Susmita Chatterjee and their sizzling chemistry is more than evident in a couple of songs from the film that recently got released. Ahead of its release on April 21, we speak to the glamourous screen couple about the film and more.

<em>Jeet in Chengiz</em>
Jeet in Chengiz

Chengiz is your first film to have a simultaneous Hindi release. How does it feel?

Jeet: It does feel good since we have been thinking about making a film for the pan-Indian audience for a long time. We observed that with the theatres remaining closed during the pandemic, the palate of the audience has completely transformed. With access to world content courtesy of OTT platforms, they now appreciate watching stuff in different regional and global languages and the phenomenal popularity of Korean content is an example in hand. And already we have seen a roadmap created by Southern mega-hits like Baahubali and RRR -- how such regional cinemas established themselves in the national arena and got well-accepted by the Hindi-speaking audience. Also, even new heroes are getting acknowledged. There are other regional movies too setting such instances and we thought of taking the same roadmap with Chengiz.

In an age when all movies are wrapped up within 15 to 20 days, Chengiz got shot for 50 days.

Jeet: Initially we had a 40-day filming schedule but the way things were shaping up, it stretched for 10 days more. I always believe it takes time and care to build anything nice.

<em>Jeet in Chengiz</em>
Jeet in Chengiz

Tell us a little about your role?

Jeet: Genre-wise, it’s a rags-to-riches film and I play Jaidev Singh who made it from a nobody to somebody. The film depicts the 90s Bengal and its mafia underworld, which has never been shown in any film before and so it was something very novel for me to try out.

I always take up the challenge to define the characters differently for each film through looks and mannerisms and in Chengiz too I tried the same with the help of my director and the amazing styling and makeup and hair team.

Susmita, what are you playing in Chengiz?

Susmita: I play an air hostess and love interest of Chengiz, who loves him despite knowing everything about him. When I got selected, I was initially very nervous about working with such a huge superstar but the moment he came on the sets, all things became easier since Jeet has no airs about him. He is humble and down-to-earth and it’s amazing to get seniors like him who are willing to work with newcomers like us. We need more such people in the industry who would offer us platforms.

<em>Susmita Chatterjee</em>
Susmita Chatterjee

How did you prepare for the role?

Susmita: I go to theatres to watch films in every language and for me, it’s very important to come out happy, positive and entertained and all these elements are there in Chengiz. It’s set in the 70s to early 90s and shows Bengal’s underworld that I had no idea of. It’s my first mainstream commercial film, so, it was a bit daunting for me. I did a few workshops and I am still in the long process of building myself as an actor. I always wanted to do a larger-than-life film where there would be romantic songs and I would be glammed up and wearing flowy dresses. So, doing this film was such a big opportunity to fulfill that wish.

 Jeet, what inspires you as an actor?

Jeet: How to get better in life and do things better as a human being in personal and professional lives.


And you are so fit. What’s the secret?

Jeet: Well, apart from a daily fitness routine, I have a very disciplined and boring diet. I have 10-12 eggs in total and lots of nuts. I eat boiled chicken for lunch, some more eggs and fruit in the evening and grilled fish at night. There’s not much deviation to this and for this, people don’t enjoy my company for dinner. But it’s also true that I’m a huge foodie with a big sweet tooth. When I go on holiday, I eat and drink everything and after returning when I observe a gain of 2-3 kgs, it fills me with immense guilt and regret but the cycle continues.

And Susmita, you?

Susmita: I eat everything but thankfully that doesn’t reflect on my weight and I would like it to stay that way because I want to pull off any kind of outfit. Fashion-wise, I am a very experimental person and I love wearing out-of-the-box clothes that are eye-catching and in different odd colours. Saris are one of my favourites but for daily wear, I also love casual denim and shirts, jeans and sneakers that are comfy and loose-fitted.

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