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Mirza: Ankush speaks on his debut as a producer, Oindrila 'satisfied' with her commercial launch Mirza
Photo courtesy: Instagram/Oindrila Sen

Mirza: Ankush speaks on his debut as a producer, Oindrila 'satisfied' with her commercial launch

India Blooms News Service | @indiablooms | 02 Apr 2024, 01:24 pm

After Magic and Love Marriage, Tollywood couple Ankush Hazra and Oindrila Sen set to feature as a romantic pair in upcoming Bengali film Mirza, which is slated for April 10 release. Days ahead of the release, IBNS correspondent Souvik Ghosh brings a candid conversation with the two actors... Read...

Q (to Ankush): How was the experience of donning the hat of a producer?

A. It was a weird experience (laughs). The responsibility fell upon me suddenly. It was not at all a planned journey. After the other makers backed out, the whole pressure and responsibility fell upon me. Frankly, I never had and still don't have the capability to execute such a big film. I am quite aware of the pressure till the release. I can only cherish being a producer after the release of the film because I am totally under pressure from all corners right now.

Photo courtesy: PR TeamPhoto courtesy: PR Team

Q (Ankush): How challenging was the juggle between the two roles, acting and production?

A. It's a dangerous situation. One might pardon an actor over a film considering various reasons. But no one will spare a producer if a film fails because he/she is in the controlling position. Now the performance of a film can only be judged after the release but I wanted to ensure that the first impression of the film, via first look or teaser or song, is not dull. It becomes very tough to revive a film if its first impression fails. So our team has won in the first round considering the audience's positive response towards the first look and teaser.

Q (to Oindrila): How was Ankush as a producer?

A. He is not a typical producer. Unlike hardcore producers, Ankush would never bargain with actors on remuneration. The producer-self is limited to him. Adding to this, Ankush will never compromise financially in making the film. I have already claimed that the Bengali film industry will get a good producer if Mirza works in the box office. Producers like Ankush, who know how to execute plans, are rare.

Q. (to Ankush): Do you feel an actor-turned producer has a different sensibility than a sole producer?

A. Yes, it is because of a few reasons. We actors face a lot of situations while working. The regular producers are aware of the comforts an actor needs or craves for but not the one-off producers. A good vanity van, food and comfortable hotels are not luxury for actors at work rather basic comfort zones for artistes to concentrate on their crafts. I will never make a film if I can't provide at least the comfort to the team. So coming back to the point, hero-turned producers know the basic comfort needed by a team.

Q (to Ankush): You have worked in a number of mainstream films in the past. What do you think is the biggest challenge in making a mainstream film at the present moment?

A. The main challenge is that the expense for the execution is more than the basic calculation of getting a ROI (Return of Investment). In Hindi, a small budget film is made at Rs. 7-15-crore which is still a healthy amount of money but a film can't be made at Rs. 50-70 lakh. It would be very difficult to make a mainstream Bengali film if we can't raise the budget to at least Rs. 3-4 crore. I have received a number of offers where the idea was grand but the budget was too less to be executed.

Q (to Oindrila): How enjoyable was playing a mainstream heroine for the first time?

A. To be honest, Mirza marks my commercial launch. Even if I consider Magic and Love Marriage, I was not used commercially. I may not have danced on foreign locations but earned something beyond imagination grooving in Kolkata studios for Mirza. Moreover, it was a challenge for me to dance alongside Ankush. I am very satisfied with my work in Mirza.

Q (to Oindrila): It is often said it becomes uncomfortable sometimes to work with the person with whom one is most comfortable in real life. Did that happen to you ever while sharing screen space with Ankush?

A. Both of us felt it when we did Magic. But our bonding in Mirza was electrifying. I can safely say our onscreen pair and chemistry have been made in this film.

Q (Ankush): Do you think releasing the film in election and IPL seasons may turn out to be risky?

A. (Ankush): I don't think it's risky for Mirza. A quality film will never fail irrespective of election or IPL season. The audience will look for some refreshment in the form of entertainment amid the high-decibel election season. I don't think it's an issue.

Photo courtesy: PR TeamPhoto courtesy: PR Team

(Oindrila): I have worked on television and I can say, TRPs never drop due to IPL or election. If a film is good, the audience will watch it.

Q (to Oindrila): Do you apprehend allegations of favouritism coming your way while working under Ankush's banner?

A. I used to think of it earlier when I was not so intelligent. Now I prepare myself in a way it would be Ankush's loss if I am not roped in for a tough character. I can guarantee that no one will be able to claim that I was unworthy for a role and was roped in only for my connection with Ankush.

The writer is a Kolkata-based entertainment, sports and political correspondent with IBNS. He can be reached on thisissouvikghosh@gmail.com

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