Pranjal Banerjee quit his job at PWC in order to pursue his calling. Later he realized that calling is filmmaking. Read on to know more about this CA turned filmmaker.
Tell us about your life journey in brief?
I am Pranjal Banerjee, born and brought up in Kolkata. I completed my graduation in commerce from Heramba Chandra College, Kolkata and pursued Chartered Accountancy course. At the age of 23, I became a CA and joined PriceWaterhouseCoopers as Consultant. After spending 5 rigorous years there, I realized that this job was not for me and decided to do something on my own and for my own! I decided to quit. I started working as a freelancer. At that time, I used to get ample time for myself which exactly I wanted!
I used to spend those times in doing trekking, writing poems and watching movies which was one of my favorite hobbies! Idle Brain, Devil’s Workshop! One day, suddenly, I decided to make a film!
And there started my journey as an independent film maker!
Thankfully, I got contact number of one of my college friends, who was involved in independent film making. I called him and we decided to venture together!
I conceptualized the story, prepared the script. He arranged the casting and helped me in Camera. We did the workshop and finished the shooting. The entire process was completed in less than a month and the film was ready for editing! I finished the editing and gave birth to my baby!
“Bindas” is my debut short film!
Now, I have my own team, own studio and an office! All of my teammates are either freelancer or in service. But passion for film has brought us together and bonded as a unit.
What prompted you to become a filmmaker?
Film is my favorite subject. Whenever, I watch any movie, I don’t watch it for the sake of entertainment or enjoyment. I take that film as a subject and try to comprehend the same. My friends often used to pull my leg calling me as a bogus film critic!
One day, one of my friends advised me to make a film. I laughed out loud but after coming home I got uneasiness in my body and strange feeling through my soul. I felt a strong conviction that I can make a film and hence sailed the boat!
Tell us about your team, if you have?
I write story, script and do the editing. I have Sreejan with me who holds the camera. I have casted Sudeepan and Rupak in my film who are into camera and music respectively. Needless to say, as we all are part of an independent film making unit, we all are jack of all trades! Our production house is “Harsh Creative Studio” in Kolkata.
How many/ What kind of movies you have made?
In last 2 years, I made 1 short film “Bindas”; I edited 1 documentary “Chitrar Chalchitra” which was entirely shot in a VGA mobile camera; made sub-title for 1 short film “News” and got associated with couple of other short films.
“Bindas” is a drama for youth which redefines the meaning of the word “Bindas” through dialogues between a man and a waiter of a bar and also through soliloquy of that man.
“Chitrar Chalchitra” is an experiment through mobile camera which captures Bengali Durga Puja festivity and effect on consumerism on the same.
“News” questions the meaning of the word News through dialogue between a news reporter and a father who has lost his son in an accident.
I am associated with few more short films which are in pipeline and in progress. These are satire and thriller.
What is your dream/ vision?
I do not have any static dream having an end point. My dream is to continue making short films for all. Neither I wanted to be specified for genre of my films nor I wanted to make 2 films from same genre! I have decided to make short films from all genres and my target is to make a full length film one day combining few short films.
What difficulties you face as an independent filmmaker?
Most importantly, finance. “Bindas” was mostly sponsored by one of my friends, Subhabrata. Independent short film makers, in India, do not get much attention from production houses and hence they lack the requisite budget and compromise the quality. I strongly feel that one can make an Oscar winning short film in Rs. 10,000 only and there are such examples!
Secondly, organization. Since Independent film makers do not have any formal association or official banner or entity, they often lack the recognition and consequently need to adjust with promotion, branding and marketing.
What inspires you or keeps you going?
My life, my parents and my ever growing passion for films. I am a very enthusiastic person and don’t want to think like a pessimist. Reality turns me on and inspires me to grow. It gives me impetus to think for my next projects. Positive vibes from within keeps me going. Life has given me and continues to give me lessons to develop myself as an Individual soul. I am thankful to my life and my parents without whom I could not have been where I am today. I cherish their blessings on me. They are the main source of my energy and motivation. I am nowhere without my parents.
Any fun/ memorable incident?
The day, I checked out my Chartered Accountancy final exam results from Internet, I was at my home, sitting in front of my laptop. My Mother was in kitchen and my Father was helping her. The moment I told them my result, my parents could not hold their tears. Later on, I realized that all was due to Onion! I was so angry from within.
I have made a 2 minute short film on this!
What advice you’d like to give to someone who is interested/newbie in film making?
Do not lose hope. You WILL face lot of challenges. But if you can hold yourself up, you will survive and reach the Pinnacle. Have faith in yourself, you will succeed.
Anything else you’d like to share?
It is Your life. Live it Your way.
If you are also a filmmaker and want to get featured, submit your short film here.
If you would like to create any video content for your organization, click here