Crowd Funded ‘Dostojee’ Goes to Cannes

By Shubhankar Ghosal Roy

Dostojee, (Two Friends), India’s first Bengali film was selected as a work-in-progress project in the ‘Goes to Cannes’ section, Marche du Film, Festival de Cannes, 2020.

Launched by Kathak Talkies, the film revolves around the friendship of two 8-year-old innocent boys ( Palash and Safikul) who go against the barriers of society and religion to remain best friends, in a remote village in West Bengal. 

Produced by Prasun Chatterjee, Prosenjit Ranjan Nath, Soumya Mukhopadhyay and Ivy Yu-Hua Shen (from Taiwan), the film takes us to a distant village, from the ’90s,  situated in West Bengal, adjacent to Bangladesh, in the homes of our two protagonists Palash, the son of a Hindu Brahmin, and Safikul, the son of a Muslim weaver. 

Tuhin Biswas (Cinematographer) draws us towards the greenery of a village, the serenity of a peaceful river, the blissful vision of paddy fields and the nostalgic beauty of a village, in this film. 

Furthermore, Tuhin Biswas debuts in the film as a Cinematographer with no prior experience of film making, but does a wonderful job in capturing the essence of a village life. Prior to his contributions in Dostojee, he worked as a still photographer. 

Prasun Chatterjee (director, writer, producer), shares his journey and experience with News Sense as he says “I spent a considerable amount of time in my life observing villagers, residing in the Indo-Bangladesh borders. I closely connect with their emotions and livelihood, which inspires me to write this story.” 

Prasun Chatterjee commenced with the script of the story in 2013. Three years later in 2016, he started approaching sponsors and producers to fund the film. Initially, producers were hesitant to invest in the film as it was Prasun Chatterjee’s first film, but gradually he received the required funds with the help of public support and investment from private sponsors. 

In the interview, Prasun Chatterjee says, “I’m extremely grateful to the entire team of NFDC Film Bazaar,” expressing his gratitude to NFDC and all other sponsors who helped him fulfill his dream. 

The struggler who took to film to such a level by sheer dedication and will power, says “A dream is fulfilled with the blood, sweat, and tears, invested in them. The taste of success becomes more flavourful if the individual works hard to taste them.”