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Feluda clears throat for radio stories

Ray's much-adored Feluda stories, The Golden Fortress and The Mystery of the Elephant God will be broadcast on BBC Radio.

india Updated: Jan 19, 2007 13:24 IST

The transmission of Vikram Seth’s A Suitable Boy, broadcast on BBC Radio in 2000, was not taken up as a cue by either the All India Radio (AIR) or any of the other FM channels. So, the BBC Radio has stepped in again.

This time around they have zeroed in on the Satyajit Ray’s much-adored Feluda stories, The Golden Fortress (goes on air on February 10) and The Mystery of the Elephant God (goes on air on August 11) , to be precise.

The voices of Rahul Bose, Anupam Kher, Jackie Shroff, Dalip Tahil and Jaspal Bhatti will activate the two productions.

Anne Edyvean, producer director of the dramatisations, pithily describes Feluda as an amalgam of Sherlock Holmes, Tintin and Indiana Jones.

Satyajit Ray in Banaras, filming The Elephant God from the Feluda series.

She says, “Ray was a Renaissance man, I have read and loved the Feluda stories. With these productions I hope we can take Ray to a new audience.

“Though they have been sitting on my bookshelf for a very long time, this just seemed like the perfect time Bombay is the hub of acting talent it was the best place to get on with the productions.” Feluda is the protagonist of a series of 35 short stories written by Ray. In the stories, he essays the part of a private detective anchored in Kolkata.

“Feluda,” says Rahul Bose and then checking himself and pulling up his socks and the half Bengali in him, he continues, “Phelooda… Pheloo… I love his puckish sense of humour, it is so Bengali, working on the productions has been a very rewarding experience.” Bose, who plays Feluda, admits that he had never read the stories until a year ago, which was when he was gifted the entire series.

He says, “Once I started reading them it took me five days to run through the series. I was very aware that the world of the stories has now disappeared. That said, they are still very engaging.”

In the past Bose has projected his voice for the radio play, A Suitable Boy. Anupam Kher will be making his debut on the airwaves with the Feluda stories. Kher, who plays the part of Felu’s close friend Lalmohan Ganguly, says, “I have had to reinvent myself as an actor for the radio play In films you have funny cos . tumes and hideous wigs to coverup your flaws, no such luck with the radio.”

First Published: Jan 19, 2007 13:02 IST