This discussion was no laughing matter. The open forum at the Kolkata International Film Festival on Monday afternoon saw a debate erupt over the topic, Comedy in Bengali cinema.
Among the panelists, this is what Subhasish Mukherjee had to say: “Comedy in today’s films is just an exercise in slapstick. Directors rope us in and think we will `d something’ to make a scene come alive. But we can’t pull off a miracle, can we? Mainstream films are all about the hero, heroine and villain. Comic actors are like the break at the interval. I don’t think there have been classic comic films since the time of Uttam Kumar.“
Director Raj Chakrabarty disagreed with this view. “In my opinion, it’s not right if we say that we don’t make comic films today . I try and present actors in unconventional comic roles, like Saswata Chatterjee in Proloy. Katmundu, for example, is an out-and-out comedy ,“ he said.