- Shakuntala Devi released on Amazon Prime Video on July 31, 2020
- The film has been directed by Anu Menon
- The film also stars Sanya Malhotra and Amit Sadh
Bengali cinema star Jisshu Sengupta believes streaming services have brought in a true crossover of different cinemas in the country. The 43-year-old actor is known for his extensive and award-winning work in Bengali cinema but he is not a stranger to Hindi audiences, with films such as Barfi!, Piku, Mardaani and its 2019 sequel, and Manikarnika to his credit. Jisshu believes a much-needed amalgamation of all regional film industries has happened because of OTT platforms. "I think in Amazon only, there is a lot of content from Bengali cinema. There are also a lot of Bengali apps which are there for quite some time now. It is up to the audience, if they want to watch it, they can go to these apps."
"Same goes for us as we couldn't see Marathi films or movies from the south as much as we wanted to. We never knew of Punjabi films as we were not able to watch these movies. Now, because of OTT platforms, we are able to see these different kinds of cinemas. So a crossover is happening," Jisshu told PTI in an interview. He stressed that OTT platforms have made people aware of his past work, which motivates him to venture into different territories.
"I'm doing a Telugu film now which will be my fourth. I have started acting in Hindi. That's a great thing that has happened," he added. In the Vidya Balan-led Shakuntala Devi, Jisshu plays the role of Shakuntala Devi's husband Paritosh Banerji. The film, directed by Anu Menon and also featuring Sanya Malhotra, started streaming on Amazon Prime Video from Friday.
"The way the film is, I really wanted to be a part of it. When I read the script, I had some doubts. I asked Anu and she was very clear about how she is dealing with the entire subject. I was very lucky that I was approached for this role," the actor said without going into the details of his character. Jisshu feels very proud of the work he has done in Hindi cinema till now and he wishes to continue working on films as diverse as Shakuntala Devi.
"All the films that I have done till now are special to me. Most of the directors were Bengali, like Anurag Basu, Shoojit Sircar and I have also worked with Sujoy Ghosh. They all knew me and the kind of work I had done. These films remain very close to my heart."
The highlight of his two-decade-long career, however, is his collaboration with the late filmmaker Rituparno Ghosh in The Last Lear (2007), Shob Choritro Kalponik (2009), Abohomaan (2010), Noukadubi (2011) and Chitrangada: The Crowning Wish (2012). Jisshu said Rituparno Ghosh, who died in 2013 at the age of 49, played an important role in his professional life.
"Rituparno Ghosh was undoubtedly my mentor, my guide, my everything. He was like a family number. I miss him a lot because he's the one who made me an actor. He made me understand exactly what an actor should do and how he should approach a character. He made me understand how to feel a character. His films have taken me to places, to some of the best film festivals across the world. I'm grateful to him and to god that Rituparno Ghosh happened to me," he added.
(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)