Interview Conducted by Talk Show Host Harry Johal
Subhrajit Mitra, a visionary director whose creative journey has been marked by passion, learning, and unwavering commitment, recently engaged in an exclusive interview with talk show host Harry Johal on Studio Carry On Harry. In this revealing conversation, Subhrajit Mitra opens up about his background, creative process, inspirations, and his upcoming cinematic masterpiece, “Devi Chowdhurani…Bandit Queen of Bengal.”
Subhrajit Mitra’s journey in the world of cinema began with a Bachelor’s degree in Computer Science and Engineering from a premier Indian university. He further honed his craft by completing a certificate course in ancient Classical literature from Harvard University and earning an Honorary Doctorate in Literature from a reputed South Indian university. His early career involved creating documentaries for government institutions and renowned channels like National Geographic, Discovery, and History Channel.
Subhrajit Mitra’s passion for storytelling ignited at a young age when he watched Steven Spielberg’s “E.T.” in a theater. Since then, he pursued his dream of becoming a director with unwavering determination.
During the interview, Mitra shared insights into his creative process, emphasizing his preference for classical literature with historical backgrounds. He described his meticulous research process, delving into the time period, customs, politics, and social context of the narratives he chooses to bring to life. Interestingly, Mitra still writes his scripts with a fountain pen, cherishing the human touch in his work.
Casting, for Mitra, is an intuitive and organic process closely linked to his scripting stage. He selects stories that resonate with him personally, infusing his philosophical thoughts into the dialogues.
A voracious reader and film enthusiast, Mitra continuously upgrades his craft by studying literature and watching films, particularly those based on literary works.
As a multi-faceted filmmaker who spearheads various aspects of filmmaking, Mitra spoke about his dedicated team. He collaborates with technicians and actors who are not just professionals but also friends. While he enjoys the entire creative process, he acknowledges the financial challenges in filmmaking as the only stressful aspect.
Mitra’s upcoming film, “Devi Chowdhurani…Bandit Queen of Bengal,” explores historical events such as the Battle of Plassey, Battle of Buxar, and the Sanyasi and Fakir Rebellion during the British colonial era in India. The film narrates the journey of a simple village girl who becomes the first Indian woman freedom fighter. It also sheds light on the Hindu ascetic monks who took up arms against the British East India Company, marking the first armed revolution by Indians.
The film is a result of extensive research, including archives from the East India Company in London and texts from various institutions.
“Devi Chowdhurani…Bandit Queen of Bengal” was shot over a period of 60 days in locations across West Bengal, including Purulia, Kolkata, and Bolpur.
This project allowed Mitra to step out of his comfort zone and present a larger canvas of lesser-known history. Inspired by master directors like Akira Kurosawa and Ridley Scott, Mitra aimed to create a realistic film that offers a plausible historical reconstruction.
The film is set to be released in Autumn 2024, with availability on global streaming platforms and a wide theatrical release.
In closing, Subhrajit Mitra shared his philosophy of embracing both positive and negative feedback, considering himself a perpetual student of the craft. He expressed his appreciation for Studio Carry On Harry and encouraged the platform to continue supporting independent filmmakers.
About Studio Carry On Harry: Studio Carry On Harry is a prominent platform for interviews and conversations with notable figures from various fields, including film, literature, music, and more. The platform aims to amplify the voices and creativity of independent artists and creators in mainstream media.
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