Debaloy (L) and Solanki (R)
Debaloy (L) and Solanki (R) Photos by Partha Saha

Director Debaloy Bhattacharya and actor Solanki Roy on their new web series

Boka Bakshote Bondi is streaming now !

Thinking out of the box and giving food for thought to the audience is the reason behind director Debaloy Bhattacharya’s success with works like Montu PilotIndubala Bhaater Hotel, and Shri Swapankumarer Badami Hyenar Kobole. In his latest series, Boka Bakshote Bondi, he takes us through the illusions and language of reality and fiction in the ‘mad’ world of television sets through his protagonist played by the talented Solanki Roy. We catch up with both to learn more about the web series.

Excerpts:

Q

Debaloy, where do you draw inspiration for the out-of-the-box contents?

A

I managed to realise that beyond everything what is important is to keep your originality alive.

Q

Solanki, how challenging has the character been from your previous ones?

A

This character was very interesting. Since I had been a television actor for long it was easier for me to relate to Aupala pretty fast. This character is quite like me and the core beliefs were very similar to mine.

Aupala has been a television actor for a long time. She started out as a child artiste and then continued working. For us television actors, now we work for 14 hours a day but earlier it was 20/21 hours a day and so it was a king of grinding work. To continue that for 20 years takes a lot. Aupala has been continuing it for too long and it’s now her choice to come out and find a new calling. But the fun part begins when she decides to change her reality and reality refuses.

Debaloy (L) and Solanki (R)
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Q

Did you consciously cast the leads keeping in mind their previous television experience?

A

Debaloy: It has been a long time since I wanted to work with Solanki again after Montu Pilot. For this, as she rightly said, she had gone through the grinding and grueling life of a television actor. It was important for someone to feel it in order to enact it. It’s a very complicated and complex wave of real–unreal; but since she knows where the boundaries merge, for her it was a very natural and seamless transition. Neel (Bhattacharya) portrayed his part very rightly, just like a character behaves in a mega-serial. For Shoumo (Banerjee) , he was in the real dimension.

Q

How do you as a person combat the taxing transition between who you are and who you are essaying on screen?

A

Solanki: In the case of television it’s a long-time commitment. For me, the transition is sometimes easy and organic and sometimes it’s taxing. I don’t combat it because the moment I try to do so I become alienated and as an actor that alienation will not help. I think whatever happens, happens in the subconscious and it stays with you.

For me, while I was shooting for the last decade, I was not consciously switching on and off but that whole process had stayed in my subconscious. When I started shooting for this series, since it stayed in my subconscious, it became my wardrobe. I could choose the colour of the character and personalities. In this shooting, I have actually stepped out of my character and had a third-person view.

Q

Where do you think OTT is headed?

A

Debaloy:  If you look at OTT overall, the way it’s consolidating and creating a regime of its own it’s a big threat to any creator. Even though I’m still able to keep my voice alive, I do think the way things are going all over the world, it will be difficult for any individual to do anything that he wants to do, that goes against the norm. Everyone is trying to make the audience homogenous and put them into a manufactured experience. I am sure this will continue and independent voices will again come up. I want to stand with independent voices.

Debaloy (L) and Solanki (R)
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Q

Your most challenging character to date…

A

Solanki: All the characters I have played have been very close and different to who I am. I would mention two. Bhromor from Montu Pilot because that world was unknown to me and  Kadombini because she was a woman who belonged to the 18th century and through her I was speaking a completely different language that I was not used to.

Q

Share one good thing about each other…

A

Debaloy:  As an actor, I haven’t seen greed in her eyes. She’s not overly ambitious. She comes to the set, gets into a character, lives it throughout the day, and enjoys it. This is rare in the industry and probably that makes her the spontaneous actor that she is because she is living it.

Solanki: I love his madness. I have always respected people who are rebellious and Debaloy da’s madness itself is a rebellion. He doesn’t have to do it by shouting or propagating something. The way he functions, behaves, and perceives things, I love that.

Boka Bakshote Bondi is streaming on hoichoi 

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