Sandip Ray has given extra effort to make his new Double Feluda film look special given that this year marks the 50th anniversary of Feluda, the iconic Bengali sleuth created by Satyajit Ray. Apart from celebrating the 50th anniversary of Feluda, the film, which is based on two of Satyajit Ray’s favourite stories, Samaddarer Chabi and Golokdham Rahasya, will also be celebrating 50 years of Sandesh. The popular Bengali children’s magazine was started by Ray’s grandfather Upendrakishore Ray Chowdhury. Feluda was first published in Sandesh in 1965. Keeping that in mind, Sandip has decided to pay tribute to the publication in the film through a variety of images, photographic collages and videos. From photo collages, stills of Satyajit Ray’s Feluda films — Sonar Kella (1974) and Joi Baba Felunath (1979) — to illustrations and interviews of those who worked in Sonar Kella, Sandip promises that the closing credits of his double Feluda film will leave the audience awestruck. HT caught up with Sandip, who brings back Sabyasachi Chakraborty as the private eye after a gap of five years, at his Bishop Lefroy Road residence, Kolkata.
Sabyasachi Chakraborty, who returns as Feluda after five years, told HT that he will do another Feluda film if you insist?
I am ready to do it. I share a strong bond with Benu (Sabyasachi Chakraborty is affectionately known as Benu). Our relationship started in 1995 and since then we have worked on so many Feluda films, which has only strengthened our relationship. But now, the most important work on hand is to find an actor who can convincingly play Jatayu (aka Lalmohan Ganguly, who is the narrator of the stories and also an author).
You have been searching for your Jatayu for the longest time after the untimely demise of Bibhu Bhattacharya, who used to play Jatayu in your Feluda films.
We keep receiving portfolios of actors, who are interested in playing Jatayu but I haven’t quite liked any of them. Jatayu was one of the most favourite characters of baba (read Satyajit Ray). So, I don’t want to cast just anyone.
You have plans of doing another Feluda film after a year. Will Sabyasachi be seen as Felu Mitter again?
Everything depends on the success and response of this film. If the audiences like our take on two Feluda stories, then I would want Benu to play Feluda again. I would always want him to play the sleuth. Not all Feluda stories are high on action. These two stories require Feluda to use his magojashtro (the brain) more than his physical fitness.
Sabyasachi Chakraborty had earlier suggested the names of Indraneil Sengupta, Anirban Bhattacharya, Priyanshu Chatterjee and others as Feluda. When you decided not to cast Abir Chatterjee as Feluda again as he was also playing Byomkesh Bakshi, did you consider taking suggestions from Sabyasachi this time too?
Not really. Also, almost all these actors were playing a detective character. Given a chance, I would work with Sabyasachi again. Since this is the 50th year of Feluda, we wanted to make it special. Both the stories were extremely close to baba and he thoroughly enjoyed writing them.
Would you consider Sabyasachi Chakraborty’s elder son Gaurav as Feluda?
Of course Gaurav is a brilliant actor. He plays a pivotal role in this Feluda film. I am a fan of his acting. He stands a chance but he needs to mature as a person too.