The spirit of Kolkata in the early '70s when the music of a pioneering rock band was first heard, the arrival of hippies and the naxalite movement together with autobiographical elements will be the thrust of national award winning film director Anjan Dutta's new venture Dutta vs Dutta.
"Unlike other '70s films, which mostly sought to portray Naxalite violence, Dutta vs Dutta will recapture turbulent College Street, the pub culture of Park Street and the emergence of Goutam Chattopadhyay and his 'Mohiner Ghoraguli' rock band," Anjan told PTI during the film's shooting in north Kolkata.
Admitting that he had long felt the need to share certain autobiographical elements in his life, he said, "I feel this is the right time when I can retrospect on these things in a dispassionate and mature way."
"Aparna Sen once told me I must make a film from what I have personally felt from deep within," he said.
"And, when the producers, Orion Entertainment, heard my story, they wanted to be part of the project. I then sat with the script and things moved on," said the director, whose recent film Ranjana Ami Ar Asbona won three national awards.
"It's more than that, it's a time of the rise of a new Bengali bourgeoisie. I have memories of so many things during those days in my life," Anjan said.
The 58-year-old singer-turned-filmmaker, whose Ranjana... Won the Best Bengali Feature Film, Best Music Direction (Songs) and a Special Jury Award at the 59th National film awards, said there were traces of personal accounts and experiences in his recent films except the movie on detective Byomkesh Baksi.
Talking about Dutta vs Dutta, Anjan said, "It's a coming-of-age film of a passionate boy and his father. There is a reference to Darjeeling where the boy studied."
Ronodeep Basu, grandson of thespian Soumitra Chatterjee, will portray the character of the boy while Anjan will play the father's role.
Rupa Ganguly, Arpita Chatterjee are in the prominent female leads.
"There are a whole lot of characters... A grandfather who plays music, a rebellious elder sister, an uncle. It is drawing on my personal experiences, but not making it too similar and changing the names," he said.
Asked if the film could be called a period one, Anjan agreed. "Yes, every prop, decor, every car has to bear the stamp of that period. It can be called many things, and yes in that sense it is a period film of the early 70s Kolkata."
The music for the film will be composed by Anjan's son Neel Dutta, who won the best music direction (song) national award for Ranjana...
Acknowledging that he was humbled by the national honour, Neel said, "In this film (Dutta vs Dutta) I am seeking to recreate that heady music of the '70s. There could be five or six songs."