Portraying the picturesque rural and urban beauty of Bangladesh, popular actor Mir Sabbir's film 'Raat Jaga Phool' is scheduled to be released on New Year's Eve this Friday across the country, making it the very last release in 2021.
A storyteller by passion, the popular actor has been directing television plays and drama serials for a long time in his two-decades-long career in television. He left no stone unturned for his debut film as its director, actor lyricist and producer.
Talking to the journos at a press conference arranged at the Dhaka Club on Wednesday evening, Mir Sabbir alongside his cast and crew members described the journey behind the film, which has already created a buzz in the cinema sphere for its subtle, beautiful and promising presentation through its trailer, songs and unique promotional campaigns.
"This was certainly a great challenge for me and my team. As it is already known to all that we got Tk 60 lakh from the government as a grant, however, we had to add a lot more to our budget because I wholeheartedly wanted to make this film as enthralling as possible, for our beloved moviegoers," Sabbir said at the press conference.
With an ensemble cast featuring Mir Sabbir as 'Roiss,' the main protagonist of the film, alongside new generation actors Rashed Mamun Apu, Miss World Bangladesh 2018 Jannatul Ferdous Oishee, Abu Hurayra Tanvir, Tanin Tanha, Shahid Shahriar with seasoned actors Fazlur Rahman Babu, Dilara Zaman, Sharmilee Ahmed, Joyraj, Dr Ezaz, Naresh Bhuiyan, Ahsanul Haq Minu and more - the film has already created high expectations among the audiences before its release.
When UNB asked Sabbir about the idea behind the selection of this ensemble cast, Sabbir said: "I have been moving with the story of 'Raat Jaga Phool' with myself for a very long time, and when it came to select the casting, my imagination matched with these popular and versatile actors. We all have truly worked not just as co-workers but a family for the entire period of this beautiful journey."
Oishee's latest release was the spy-thriller 'Mission Extreme' which is still running successfully at the theatres, and speaking of her continuing momentum which was put on a halt due to the ongoing pandemic last year, the young actress said 'Raat Jaga Phool' was a refreshing experience for her.
"I feel really fortunate to be a part of this film, sharing the silver screen with our amazing actors under the brilliant direction of Mir Sabbir. Through this film, I have also explored the mesmerizing traditional beauty of our country, which I am glad that our audiences will get to explore this 31st December," Oishee said at the press conference.
Explaining the decision behind selecting this particular date, Mir Sabbir said, "Through 'Raat Jaga Phool,' we wanted our audiences to start the New Year with good tidings. As a government-grant winning film which is getting released on the year of Bangladesh's Golden Jubilee' of Independence, our 'Raat Jaga Phool' is releasing on the last day of 2021 which will be written down in history forever."
Sabbir also debuted as a lyricist with the film, and the playbacks were made by also an ensemble cast featuring SI Tutul, popular Indian-Bengali singer Nachiketa Chakraborty, Rahul Ananda, Hridoy Khan, Momtaz and Shofi Mondal. Hridoy Khan sang a folk song after a long period of time, eminent singer Nachiketa returned to the rap song genre for this film years after his popular track "Ei Besh Bhalo Achhi," popular band 'Joler Gaan' vocalist Rahul Ananda made his playback debut for this film with the track "Banar Bandhu" which has already become a fan favourite, and SI Tutul-Shofi Mondal's "Range Range Duniya" made justice to Oishee-Apu's exploration of traditional Bengali village festival seen in the music video as a festive song.
"Our music director Emon Chowdhury brilliantly directed the music for this film keeping the intended vibe that we wanted to portray in this film. The idea of these songs crossed my mind situationally based on the demand of the story, and we are really glad to see the positive response of these songs. The title track is sung by our folk-queen Momtaz, which perfectly captured the sentiment of the film," Sabbir said about the music and his experience as a debutant lyricist.
After the press conference, a video promo was shown featuring many of the popular Bangladeshi actors and actresses who worked with Sabbir as co-artistes for the last two decades. Jaya Ahsan, Mou, Tareen Jahan, Aupee Karim, Tony Dias, Chanchal Chowdhury, Shahriar Nazim Joy, Monalisa, Tanveen Sweety, Tamalika Karmakar, Intekhab Dinar, Chayanika Chowdhury and others conveyed their wishes for the film and urged audiences to watch the movie at the theatres, but the most touching was the message of legendary actor ATM Shamsuzzaman who passed away this year.
"I have always told him (Sabbir) that he is born to make films. 'Raat Jaga Phool' will automatically mesmerize the film-lovers with its refreshing breeze - it does not need the blessings," ATM Shamsuzzaman said about the film praising the debuting filmmaker, when Sabbir visited him and showed clips of the unfinished movie, with a promise to show the finished version in the future.
While that future sadly went into oblivion, Sabbir and his team expect to enthral the moviegoers this 31st December with the unique and tantalizing presentation of beautiful Bangladesh through a suspense and mystery infilled narrative, and messages against cruelties against animals and other human beings.
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