“Kajol Rekha”: Giasuddin Selim delves into folklore with his new film | The Daily Star
12:00 AM, July 20, 2010 / LAST MODIFIED: 12:00 AM, July 20, 2010


“Kajol Rekha”: Giasuddin Selim delves into folklore with his new film

“Monpura” fetched me honours, appreciation of the audience and much more. Most importantly, it has provided me with a steady platform.

After his blockbuster “Monpura,” TV play and film director Giasuddin Selim is starting his new film. The Daily Star recently caught up with the auteur. Excepts from the interview:
Tell us about your new film…
My new film is called “Kajol Rekha.” Shooting will start around mid-November or first week of December this year. We'll shoot at Sunamganj and Kapashia. The script requires a haor area, which Sunamganj has. I've already been there twice to check out the location. I'm writing the script; have done the second draft. Shooting will continue till August, next year.
Have you decided on the cast?
Haven't finalised the cast yet. But the crew -- cameraman, editor etc -- will be the same as “Monpura.” Might cast some actors who were in “Monpura” as well. I haven't found my “Kajol Rekha” yet though. “Kajol Rekha” is a 300/400 year old story, an era when Bengal was affluent. Kajol Rekha has to be a young girl [between 15 and 20 year old] who'll epitomise that period. Hopefully I'll find her soon.
Tell us more about the set-up and story…
The story is based on the pala style. We're researching on the music for the film; have collected some folk tunes from the Mymensingh region. Songs from the “Mymensingh Geetika” are still popular among the people of that region. We want to use those songs in the film. I haven't yet decided on the music director though.
“Monpura” was a huge hit. Have you been getting offers from mainstream film producers since then?

I've received many offers but declined. Right now I'm focused on “Kajol Rekha.”
Let's go back to “Monpura.” How long did it run at the movie theatres?
“Monpura” ran at Star Cineplex for nine months at a stretch and at Bolaka for six months. Outside Dhaka, it ran at Monihar for eight weeks. Many theatres in Pabna, Khulna and other districts screened it for six/seven weeks.
What has “Monpura” given you apart from the obvious economic gains?
Everything a filmmaker wants. “Monpura” fetched me honours, appreciation of the audience and much more. Most importantly, it has provided me with a steady platform. People have started believing that directors who start their careers in TV are capable of making a successful transition to the big screen.
What are your expectations from “Kajol Rekha”?
“Monpura” was purely a Bangla romantic film. “Kajol Rekha” delves into our folklore. With this film, I'll try to delve into our past. Many are familiar with the “Kajol Rekha” story. As for expectations go, I can only say that audiences won't be disappointed. I consider myself an entertainer and I earnestly hope “Kajol Rekha” will entertain the audience.
Outside Bangladesh, where has “Monpura” been screened?
“Monpura” has been screened in eight/ten major cities around the world. Most of the audiences were naturally Bengali expats. Outside Bangladesh, the film was first screened in Sydney. Then in Melbourne, New York, Toronto, Montreal, Brussels etc. I've attended a show in Australia. Every show was houseful.
Have you decided on how to promote your new film?
I do have plans for promoting “Kajol Rekha.” Don't want to divulge it right now. Everything needs promotion, films are no different. Before a film hits the theatre, audience needs to know about it. All I can say is that the film will be released in movie theatres, and won't have its premiere on TV. Also, it'll be released in several major cities around the world along with Dhaka.
Which was your first directorial venture?
“Biprotip,” a TV serial was my first directorial project. It was aired on Ekushey TV. It enjoyed popularity too.
Are you directing anything for the coming Eid?
I'm directing a one-hour play for the coming Eid-ul-Fitr.
What are you working on right now?
I'm making a 26-episode TV series produced by BBC. I recently went to the UK to shoot the series. The series will be aired on BTV.

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