The dynamic duo of Anurag Kashyap and Sunil Bohra — whose mission statement is to turn good cinema into a movement — is back with one more offering. Their upcoming film chronicles the events of the Chittagong Uprising of 1930 and is appropriately titled Chittagong.
Writer-director Bedebrata Pain calls his film an incredible story of victory. The biopic has many firsts associated with it. Chittagong Uprising was one of the first historical movements that propelled the freedom struggle by shaking the very foundation of British Raj. For the first time, the British were kicked out of a town that too by a team of poorly-trained and poorly-equipped freedom fighters, most of them who were in their teens. The teens raid the garrison and forced the British to flee.
NDTV is associating with a Hindi film for the first time. Former NASA scientist Bedabrata makes his directorial debut with this film. He is a technocrat whose inventions include digital imaging that kick started the digital camera revolution from cell-phone cameras to the popular RED camera. Manoj Bajpai, Nawazzudin, Jaideep Ahlawat and Rajkumar play pivotal roles in a saga that chronicles true events. Another man to look out for as far as the cast is concerned is acting guru Barry John. Manoj Bajpai essays the role of the revolutionary Surya Sen.
Musical trio of Shankar Ehsan and Loy have scored the soulful music while noted lyricist Prasoon Joshi has written the songs. Bolo Na, a song based on Raga Bhagyashree, rendered by Shankar Mahadevan in his soulful voice is quickly moving the charts closely followed by the high-octane inspirational track Ishan, sung by the director himself. This song is a father’s tribute to his son who tragically passed away during the making of the film. Incidentally, Chittagong is dedicated to his late son Ishan.
There comes a moment in the film when the lead protagonist Jhunku Roy has to make a choice between his commitment to the cause and to surrender. Similarly, Bedabrata faced insurmountable odds during the shooting. He had the same choices as Jhunku does in the film and he too decided against surrendering.
The film has been ready for quite sometime now but the makers were finding it hard to find a buyer. That’s when the messiahs of New Age cinema — Anurag Kashyap and Sunil Bohra — stepped in. NDTV also joined the bandwagon and the film is finally seeing the light of the day. “I was clean bowled by the director's passion and commitment and hence decided to back Chittagong,” says Bohra. The kiosks, the wall paintings, hoardings and the print advertisements reflect his enthusiasm in helping Chittagong reach as many people as possible.
October 12 is the day Chittagong hits the screens all over the country. It was received with a standing ovation in Los Angeles and has wowed all at various film festivals. “It is bound to create waves at the box office,” prophesises Sunil Bohra with his trademark smile.