Sameera Reddy had the privilege of working in two Bengali films Ami Yasin Ar Madhubala in 2007 and Kalpurush in 2008. “Kalpurush changed my attitude to my career and my self-esteem. Please remember I was a glamorous actress in Mumbai. I had done Sanjay Gupta’s Musafir. I wanted to know how Buddhada thought of me in the role of Supriya, Rahul Bose’s unhappy wife in Kalpurush. It needs a visionary filmmaker to see an actor in a role that seems very removed from her real personality or her on-screen image.”
Did Sameera ask the filmmaker why he thought of her ? “Not really. Buddhada was a man of few words. He hardly spoke. You can see the importance of silence in his cinema. There are long stretches of no dialogue in his films.There were beautiful unspoken passages between his characters. I shared a mentor-pupil relationship with him. I would strain to hear when he talked. He said so little, it was like a treat when he spoke,” Sameera laughs , remembering the standing ovation Kalpursh got in Cannes. Also read: Mithun Chakraborty On His Unique Experience With Buddhadeb Dasgupta
“I got goosebumps when the film received a standing ovation in Cannes. I get goosebumps now thinking about it. He was a big favourite among international audiences. And Kalpurush is regarded among his finest works.I am so proud to be part of it.” Also read: National-Award Winning Filmmaker Buddhadeb Dasgupta Passes Away At 77; West Bengal CM Mamata Banerjee Offers Condolences
Was the Bengali language a problem for Sameera? “Not at all. In fact my recently husband asked me what was it like to work in cinema in so many languages and I told him Bengali was the easiest to learn,maybe because Buddhada was such a great teacher. He would sit me down, coach me in the nuances of Bangla. From him, I learnt about the food, the culture of Bengal and how Bengali women wore their saree.”
As for her other film with Dasgupta Ami, Yasin Ar Amar Madhubala Sameera says, “That was a much lighter film in tone.It was about Prosenjeet Chatterjee and his friend(Amitabh Bhattacharya) becoming fascinated by my character. I learnt a lot more in Kalpurush. But it was because of Ami, Yasin Ar Amar Madhubala that Buddhada came to me for Kalpurush, That he found it worth his while to repeat me within a year said something about my abilities as actor.Buddhada affirmed my faith in myself. For that I will be always grateful. I did stay in touch with him . But he wasn’t somebody I could think of calling for a casual chat. One doesn’t gossip with a genius.”
Image source: sameera reddy
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