Para myths can rise above idle gossip. They can be fodder for creative endeavours too,insists filmmaker Subhadro Choudhury. A man form Lake Gardens and his obsession with his fantasies,was the inspiration behind Choudhurys latest directorial venture,Clerk. I have never seen that man,but I have heard a lot about him. Apparently,every evening,after returning from work,he would carry long,animated conversations with posters of Bollywood actresses in his room. And these conversations were loud enough for his neigbours to hear. That was the spark I needed to script this film, says Choudhury,who is a faculty member of Satyajit Ray Film and Television Institute.
A few years back,Choudhury made a National award winning film about suffering and redemption called Prohor. It delved in the personal hell of a nurse who is made to take care of the same person who had raped her. Clerk,claims the filmmaker,is a treatise on a man and his perceived reality. What makes Choudhury reside in the inner worlds of his character rather than the outer world? Its true both my films have been character-driven. Clerk,trapezes between reality and imagination with such amazing alacrity that it will be difficult for the viewer to distinguish between the two. I like talking about people and their motivations. Human mind is such a fascinating subject,it offers you the luxury of spinning a story out of every little idiosyncrasy, says the Film and Television Institute of India (Pune) graduate.
Clerk has Prosenjit playing the eponymous character of a typist who is leading a dual life. He has completely surrendered to my vision. He plays an unassuming middle-aged bachelor who changes the moment he walks into his sanctuary. He is a bashful rake courting Bollywood heroines in his imaginary world. And its to his credit that Prosenjit has convincingly managed to project the contradictory sides of the same character convincingly. Only a veteran could have done something so complex so easily, insists Choudhury. Bengals reigning superstar,however,is the only veteran in the cast of Clerk. It has about forty first-time actors and theatre personalities in the cast, says Choudhury.
Produced by Nitesh Sharma of Bangla Talkies (the same production house that produced Raat Barota Paanch and Aamra),Clerk will release next week. Clerk is nothing like a conventional Bengali blockbuster. Its not a remake of a Telugu or a Hindi film. Its an original script and I have tried to tell a story differently. So yes,Im a little nervous about its commercial prospects. But then Im also confident that because my film is a character-driven one,once the audience connects with my protagonist they will not walk out of the theatre until the last reel rolls out, says Choudhury.