Jisshu Sengupta: Today with OTT, it is no more about star power
Actor Jisshu Sengupta is riding high on the current OTT wave in India, and says the ever-growing diverse world of web has blurred the lines between industries, helping him make his way to south filmdom.
“The main reason behind the blurring lines between the industries is the growth of OTT. Whether you are sitting in the South, East or West, people are watching the content from there through the streaming services. So, people are getting to know about the actors. And that’s where we come in,” shares Sengupta, adding: “Today, it is not about star power. It is only about the content”.
After building his repertoire in Bengali film industry, Sengupta gradually made his way into Bollywood, and started getting noticed through films such as Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose: The Forgotten Hero (2005), Barfi! (2012) and Mardaani (2014). Having achieved a star status in Bengal, he did not snap his ties with Hindi film industry, but instead strengthened it by exploring web projects.
“I might be a star in Bengal. I might be a hero in Bengal, but I believe myself to be an actor (first). I have already done seven Telugu films, and I’m doing three more right now. I’m doing a lot of work in Hindi. So people have begun to know me,” says the actor, who was recently seen in OTT projects such as Shakuntala Devi, Sadak 2, Durgamati: The Myth, and Criminal Justice season 2.
And through his work, Sengupta has managed to cement his position in the Hindi film industry.
“In Mumbai, people knew me for a really long time. I have worked with Shyam Benegal, Sujoy Ghosh, Anurag Basu, Shoojit Sircar and Pradeep Sarkar. They and others in Mumbai know the kind of work I have done,” he tells us.
However, the National-Award winning actor credits the booming digital space for opening more doors for him.
“Down south, it started because many people saw me in Typewriter, and then in Criminal Justice. Now, they know the kind of actor I am. And that is the main reason how the lines are getting blurred,” says the 44-year-old.
Next, he will soon be seen alongside Salman Khan in film, Antim: The Final Truth, and Chiranjeevi in Telugu film Acharya.
“I am playing a negative role in Antim. It was great and fun working with Salman. He really is a down to earth and sweet. He doesn’t talk much, and talks just about films, technique or the technicalities of making a film. It was great knowing him,” says the actor, who is also working on his autobiography.