Yesteryear Bengali actress Sabitri Chatterjee is all set to star in a romantic comedy which is a love story between a young man and an aged woman. The 79-year-old actress, Uttam Kumar’s favourite co-actor, has been paired opposite 36-year-old Abir Chatterjee in “Thammar Boyfriend” (Boyfriend of Grandma). Sabitri has welcomed the new concept and said she missed those days when wholesome entertainers were a regular.
“We are missing pure wholesome entertainers for family viewing. I really miss those days when comedy films with a literary touch and a feel-good factor were in fashion and the audience just lapped them up,” Sabitri, whose acting in the cult movie “Nishipadma” (1971) had set a new benchmark, said.
Years later, “Nishipadma” was turned into a Hindi smash hit “Amar Prem” starring Rajesh Khanna and Sharmila Tagore. Asked if she was feeling uneasy doing the film with a much-younger actor Abir, the actress said in jest, “Who won’t like to be handsome hunk Abir’s girl friend?”
“Thammar Boyfriend” revolves around septuagenarian Nandini Mitra, a widow and loner living in a big village mansion who falls for Partho and wishes to marry him, much to the surprise of her son and daughter leading to funny moments. She said that both Abir and director Anindya Ghose have made her comfortable.
While Bengali cinema shunned the subject of romance between an old woman and her young lover, there are several Hindi films like “Nishabd”, “Shaukeen” and “Cheenii Kum” dealing with the subject. Abir, whose “Byomkesh Parbo” on the popular fictional sleuth is awaiting a December release, said, “I had goosebumps acting opposite someone who I grew up watching on TV. And I am now playing her boyfriend.
“Her comic timing is excellent and we heard stories about the matinee idol and other formidable actors of 70s during shoot breaks. I can now tell my child that I had acted opposite none other than Sabitri Chatterjee,” Abir said.