Aditya Vikram Sengupta, whose debut film, Asha Jaoar Majhe (Labour of Love) won two National Awards for best debut film of a director and best sound designing in 2015, was having a tough time getting a distributor for his film. However, the filmmaker has finally found a presenter in National award-winning director Suman Ghosh and the film will now release on June 26 in Kolkata but only in three theatres -- South City, City Centre and Nandan.
Asha Jaoar Majhe, which has no dialogues, also won three awards at the recently concluded New York Indian Film Festival for best film, best director and best screenplay. The film, which stars Ritwick Chakraborty and Basabdutta Chatterjee, shows the plight of a couple struggling to find love in recession hit-Kolkata.
"Before Suman da came on board, I tried to convince a few distributors but they didn't show much interest. I came to know Suman da (Suman Ghosh) through my brother. They both studied in the same B-school. We met and talked about the film. He showed interest in my project and agreed to present the film. He knows a lot of people in Kolkata and that will definitely help the film," says Sengupta.In an interview to HT in April, Sengupta said that if he fails to release the film in the theatres, he would prefer releasing it on Youtube. "Yes, I had given that a thought too but now that the film is finally releasing in the theatres, I am happy," he says.
A still from Asha Jaoar Majhe.
Why just three theatres? "We could have gone for more shows but we were not sure how many people would be going to the theatres to watch the film. I am aware that a lot of people are interested in watching the film but will they turn up at the theatres too? It's not a Dev-starrer that it will have a wider appeal. The film should run on its own merit. So, we thought of releasing it in three theatres and if it attracts the audiences we will increase the number of screenings," says Sengupta, who also wrote, edited and shot the film.
Unlike other commercial films, Sengupta also doesn't have plans of going overboard with the film's promotion. "We will promote the film extensively online and follow the simple rules of promotion. We won't go over the top," he says.
The film, which has travelled to more than 40 film festivals across the world including Marrakech International Film Festival, BFI London Film Festival Abu Dhabi Film Festival and 71st Venice International Film Festival (Venice Days), where Sengupta also bagged the best director award of a debut film, will also have a simultaneous release in Mumbai on June 26 in one theatre. Sengupta informs he is trying his best to release the film in Delhi too.