Bhotbhoti: My film might seem like a fairy tale but it is rooted in reality, says director Tathagata Mukherjee

A man peering out from a boat. A mermaid peeking out from the water. A film poster with such an imagery is bound to lead people to believe that it is a fairy tale. Tathagata Mukherjee’s upcoming film Bhotbhoti does indeed have fairy tale elements. But the director is quick to add, “Bhotbhoti is not just a fairy tale. I have taken a poetic approach to depict contemporary issues. The film has a political standpoint, like all films are bound to. There is a blend of fantasy and reality in Bhotbhoti.”

In the film newcomer Rishav Basu plays the role of Bhotbhoti, a young man who lives in a slum near a river. “He is a born storyteller and claims that he sees a mermaid. Then one day he actually meets the mermaid. That’s when my story starts,” explains Tathagata. The director adds, “My film is a story of fire and water. The man and the mermaid represent these two elements.”




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Tathagata Mukherjee says, “In 2010 I had gone to the Rabindra Sarobar lake in Kolkata with a friend. It was dark and the water looked pitch black. I had this feeling that, what if the Loch Ness monster appears out of this water? The mermaid in Bhotbhoti is a representation of that thought.”

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Tathagata Mukherjee has been connected with acting since early childhood. He says, “I’ve been acting in theatre since I was five years old. I’m an avid student of world cinema. And I’ve also been a storyteller since my school days. I was five years old when I watched King Kong and that’s when I decided that I have to make films.”


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