Silver screen star–producer-filmmaker Nayak Raj Razzak needs no introduction to cine-goers. In a career spread over five decades, he has received the National Film Awards several times over. The crowning glory was the recent recipient of the Shadhinota Padak, one of the country's highest civilian awards. In a recent conversation, the thespian spoke about what the prestigious award means to him and a host of other subjects.
How does it feel to win the Shadhinota Padak?
Razzak: Although I have received the National Film Awards several times, Bangladesh's Shadhinota Padak is a big achievement. I'm thankful to the government for conferring such a prestigious civilian award on me.
What is your next goal?
Razzak: Frankly, I don't have any expectations after such successes. I'm happy that in my five-decade long career, I've been flooded with people's love. I am blessed with a very happy life with my sons and grandchildren around me. I'm very proud to have everyone's blessings.
How do you view our film industry?
Razzak: It is not an industry at all now. If Almighty wishes, the industry will return to its golden days otherwise it will die out. We have made great efforts to boost the industry, but if it dies it will be really unfortunate.
Do you get time to watch your old movies?
Razzak: Yes, but only occasionally. Whenever I do I am wonderstruck to see what wonderful movies were made those days. Those movies still entertain me and you want to watch them over and over.
Do you feel that cinema halls are on the wane?
Razzak: It is very sad that many cinema halls have shut down but if we tried a bit, they would not close shutters. The government can take initiatives to this end.
When did you first stand in front of the camera?
Razzak: “Shilalipi”, a moment that is indelibly printed in my mind.
You also worked as an assistant director those days?
Razzak: I first worked with filmmaker Kamal Ahmed and then Zahir Raihan.
You came into the limelight with the film “Behula” by Zahir Raihan?
Razzak: Zahir Raihan Saheb offered me the role of the hero in the movie which was later critically acclaimed.
You are the pioneer of modern action cinema in our country. Tell us about that film.
Razzak: “Rangbaj” was directed by Zahirul Haq. The film earned me immense fame.
How did you get the title of 'Nayak Raj'?
Razzak: Ahmed Zaman Chowdhury, editor of Chitrali, gave me the title and since then everyone addresses me as Nayak Raj Razzak. I'm really grateful to him for this.
How do you look back on your career?
Razzak: I'm quite satisfied with my success. I just want to die when I'm still working. I don't want to depend on others in my last days.