Prolific Bengali filmmaker and poet Buddhadeb Dasgupta passed away at the age of 77 on Thursday (June 10, 2021) after a prolonged battle with kidney ailments. His demise is a huge shocker for Indian cinema.
Actress Sameera Reddy who is generally associated with glamorous roles, left everyone surprised when she played a simple school teacher in Buddhadeb Dasgupta's 2005 Bengali film Kaalpurush. The film also starred Mithun Chakraborty and Rahul Bose in pivotal roles.
In an interaction with ETimes, Sameera reacted to the news of Dasgupta's passing and said that it's too shocking and something which has made her numb. The actress told the tabloid, "I can't believe he is no more. It's too shocking and something that's made me numb".
Sharing her memories of working with him in Kaalpurush, Sameera remembered him as a sweet and stern teacher who held her hand and took her into a world which she had never imagined. She recalled how he taught her how Bengalis relish maach-bhaat for her role in the film.
"Talking about him evokes so many memories, so many thoughts. Primarily, I would remember him as a sweet and stern teacher who held my hand and took me into a world I had never imagined becoming a part of. He taught me so much about nuanced performances. He had a fine eye for detail. He could invest hours trying to add finishing touches to your performance. I was playing a Bengali girl for the first time in Kaalpurush. He taught me something as simple and as basic as eating maach and bhaat. There's a way in which Bengalis eat and that had to be seeded into my performance, almost as if it's everyday-life for me," Sameera told ETimes.
Sameera said that despite her being a part of mainstream cinema, the filmmaker had the foresight to cast her in Kaalpurush which was unlike what she had done before in her career.
The actress said, "You know, despite being a part of mainstream cinema, Buddhadeb Dasgupta had the foresight to cast me in Kaalpurush. I don't know how but he envisioned me in a role I could never have seen myself in. He could somehow sense what someone is capable of even without them realising it. No one had imagined I could become a part of a world like Kaalpurush, which exposed me to a different realm of cinema."
Sameera spoke about how Kaalpurush changed her career and gave credit to Dasgupta for a huge part of her professional growth.
"That film changed a lot for my career. I could find my spot under the arclights at the prestigious Cannes Film Festival thanks to him. Today, his passing hurts because without him, a huge part of my professional growth would not have occurred," ETimes quoted Sameera as saying.
Kaalpurush revolved around a struggles with his memories of his powerful father. The Bengali movie bagged the National Award for Best Feature Film in 2006.