Thursday, May 24, 2012

Positive Attitude: One Morning in the Month of September, 2010

Interactions and exchanges are important. If you are hurt I'd surely apologize to you once I die. But till I'm living this life of mine I'm bound to do things that make you react, and thus join the conversation. Often I tell myself to act and not to react, but it's not possible every time. The worst thing is that you generally open up only after I start shouting. Can't it be the other way round?

I know it's tough for you to understand. You've never been in my shoes. I remember, in 2005, when I joined my grad school in Kolkata, I got a mobile phone from my father. I was about to move to the city. So, it was needed to keep in touch with the family. The next day I woke up and it was 2010. I got an SMS. "Congratulations! Your relationship with Reliance GSM services has crossed 5 years. We are thankful to you for your continued support." Like a dream, I started recalling where I was. Last two days I had two 15 hour shifts. I was involved in a boring commissioned project at that time. Who were my friends in 2005? I found that only 7 are there whom I still can call friends. Where was I? The locked out factory, our home, the estate --- exactly that's when I planned to make Memories... of a Dead Township (2012) --- The film did not cost me even a penny. But there was risk involved. If they could catch me... I don't know... I was afraid for my camera. Hence, that morning in the month of September, 2010 I was at Bhawanipur and I was trying to recall how I came this way. After coming to Kolkata I started living with a batch-mate at his house, Debarghya Mukhopadhyay, probably the only friend who loved me more than himself. But our "commune" did not last for long. I had to move out. The next year, I spent most of my time at Jadavpur University. I was not a student there. In 2006, the campus was the source of progressive 3rd stream politics for me. Yeah, and then in the month of December I was arrested from Nandan and taken to Hastings P.S. My comrades did not want me to do whatever caused this incident, but it made our magazines and literary-political activities get some campaign. The wind carried us for 3-4 months and then friends started to turn their backs. For almost a year, I kept myself locked up in my room and re-invaded Kolkata in February 2008 with Shabdoprokriyakoron. In June or may be July, I got a new registration number and was registered as a student of Film Studies department at the Jadavpur University. Classes, the few I attended, were good. It was the time of our first semester when I received a phone call from someone named Mr. Arupratan Ghosh. He just wanted to check out whether the phone number provided in my book is a real one and whether the names mentioned in the book are of real people. By the end of November we met in a pub, Baraduari at Janbazaar. We both were amazed to find our common feelings about some phenomenons in world cinema. The last film he made was in 2004. It was the fifth year of silence. I was trying to do something on my own. In fact we had already started shooting the infamous incomplete documentary on Subimal Mishra. Sriparna was with me since 2005 and everything was possible just because she got a handycam in 2007. So that's how it all began. On 6th December, 2008, we were in a car. Shooting for a short, obscure, Arupratanistic. Once the film was complete we called our film-enthusiast friends of that period and decided to make it big. Through the year 2009, we just kept on working. I edited five shorts. It was difficult as three of the makers had no idea about what they wanted to shoot or how to handle the smart-ass little-learnt cameraman. Only one of these three turned out to be good (though there was an unintended and inevitable idiotic continuity break). Five No Budget Films (2010) released on the last day of January and 100 copies of the first edition were sold out in just seven days. My film Jean-Luc Godard had No Script turned out to be a bit controversial. The film was made with Rs. 573 /- (The costs of food and transport). Moreover, I could not stand the irritating talk-talk culture of the department and attacked my faculties. By May, 2010, I was kinda banned in my department. They were not really helping our initiative and people who really mattered are still in good terms with me. All these I was thinking in the morning, I don't remember the date, of September, 2010. Suddenly I realized I better move out of the bed and make some phone calls . I borrowed 70,000 cash from my father for some project which I was thrown out of some days ago. My partner was a revolutionary friend (allegedly one of the squad that attacked the lexus motors' showroom in 2006) from old times who has turned into an irritating fraudulent businessman after accepting loan from the prime minister of India . Moreover, my handycam is left at his office. So, I was running on a negative balance of around 1.25 lakhs and since I was an idiot (I still am) I had no papers with me to prove anything.

In 2011, Season Two: No Budget Film released and got wider circulation than Five No Budget Films.

In 2012, 3rd Compilation was out on DVDs in time

Would you still say my attitude towards life is negative? It's just that I know what I had to do, what I'm still doing and how, as I said, you were never in my shoes.

Throughout the production and post-production of Jean-Luc Godard Had No Script we had to face apocalyptic occurrences. A friend of mine suggested me to start a blog and share the experiences. I never really had enough time to do that. During the shoot of Secret Footage (2011) [Part of Season Two], I myself thought of staring a blog named 'Secret Diaries' but my schedule never encouraged my positive thinking. Then during the shoot of Memories... of a Dead Township I really felt the urge to share my experiences with those 239 people on the FB page. How we were proceeding with the shooting --- it would  have been an enjoyable and thrilling story. This time I also opened up a blog, but that was all. The only thing I posted there was the welcome note. But this time, I'm happy that I'm doing what I wanted to do. See, time is changing. Finally plans are being converted into actions. You'll have this feel too, in a better way, once we enter the month of June.

Come, Play the Time...

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