“Made in Bangladesh” to be premiered at the Toronto International Film Festival

2019 Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF) is starting in a week. And “Made in Bangladesh”, a film by Bangladeshi filmmaker Rubaiyat Hossain, is going to be premiered at the TIFF 2019, under the Contemporary World Cinema category.

What is TIFF

“Made in Bangladesh” to be premiered at the Toronto International Film Festival

Founded in 1976, Toronto International Film Festival has now become one of the largest publicly attended film festivals in the world. TIFF is providing the platform for aspiring filmmakers to kick start their careers and the opportunity to showcase their new works.

There are about 12 types of programmes and categories in TIFF. Films of narrative style which are usually made by young established directors fall under TIFF’s category: “Contemporary World Cinema”.

This year marks the 44th edition of TIFF.  It’s a 10-day festival, from 5 September 2019 to 15 September 2019.

About “Made in Bangladesh”

“Made in Bangladesh” to be premiered at the Toronto International Film Festival

“Made in Bangladesh” is Rubaiyat Hossain’s third feature-length film.

The protagonist of the film is a worker of the ready-made garment (RMG) sector named Shimu. The character is based on a real-life person who acted as a consultant throughout the making of the film.

“Made in Bangladesh” is the story of Bangladesh’s RMG sector. How this sector empowers women, how it makes them financially independent and provides them socio-economic independence. On-screen, the film laments the obstacles female workers face and also celebrates their success.

Read more: French movie “Fahim” to portray the story of Bangladeshi chess prodigy

All about women empowerment

“Made in Bangladesh” to be premiered at the Toronto International Film Festival

The film talks about women empowerment in every way possible. The director herself is a woman. So is the production designer, sound editor, cinematographer and art director.

“One of the things I’m proud of about the film is that all the major departments were headed by women”

Said Rubaiyat Hossain.

Production Information

“Made in Bangladesh” to be premiered at the Toronto International Film Festival

The film, which began its production phase on 17th April 2019, chose different locations of Dhaka and Gazipur of Bangladesh as shooting spots and continued for around 36 days.

The film is co-produced by Bangladesh, France, Denmark, and Portugal. It was also financed by France’s CNC fund, Norway’s Sørfond plus, the EU’s Eurimages fund and Denmark’s Danish Film Institute fund. Pyramid International is the French distributor and international sales agent for the film.

A big step for Bangladeshi films

Not saying there are no good films being made in our country. Of course, a handful of really good films have been made in the last century. Watching them, people in Bangladesh have been growing a better taste in the moving pictures. And “Made in Bangladesh” helps this process to gain momentum.

TIFF 2019 premiering “Made in Bangladesh’ is indeed a huge move forward for Bangladeshi films.

It is promising and hopeful for the young aspiring filmmakers. Especially, the story on screen and behind the camera is motivating for all women.

Bangladesh premier

Rubaiyat Hossain has expressed her anticipations that “Made in Bangladesh’ will be soon premiered at the Dhaka Internation Film Festival. She also expects for a local distributor to make her film commercially available to Bangladeshi audience through cinema halls. 

We cannot wait to watch it!

Like our content? Follow us on our Facebook page for regular updates. We want to hear from you. Take a moment to write to us with your stories, contributions and suggestion. Contact us for advertising and partnership opportunities at [email protected] Thank you!

Ferar Gaan: The first Bangladeshi short made entirely with a Smartphone

Let us begin with an analogy. Steven Soderbergh’s latest film High Flying Bird was shot entirely on a smartphone. Referring to this award-winning director, it is like ‘writing script in pencil’. The director replied so to his fellow visionary director, Christopher Nolan, when Nolan challenged him to go back to shooting on film. This thrilling dunk had its world premiere at the Slamdance Film Festival earlier this year. It received accolades from both the critics and the audiences.

Technology and filmmaking

When it comes to film making, one would surely think of new technological advent in equipment. But in reality, there are a lot of things that will appear with that thinking which may confine the opportunity of becoming a film-maker, when you also have the chance to shoot your dream with just a smartphone. Soderbergh and other directors prove that it’s not about the camera, the best camera you got probably in your pocket to make your vision into reality.

Ferar Gaan: The first Bangladeshi short made entirely with a Smartphone

Our celebrated director Shafayet Mansoor Rana took the idea further and decided to try his hand at writing his script in the metaphorical pencil and it certainly worked. He successfully delivered the first ever professional production completely shot on a smartphone in Bangladesh. The film, Ferar Gaan, was released last week as the iflix original on this popular streaming platform. The film has been entirely shot using Samsung flagship smartphone Galaxy S10+. 

The plot

In the opening sequence of this short, we see two men looking for an address quite frantically. When they finally get to their desired destination, the person gets shell shocked and falls to the ground with awe and the title pops-up on the screen. The director pushes us back to two months earlier. The film is starred by rock icon Jon Kabir, popular actor Azmeri Asha and Sayeed Zaman Shawon. This short is split into three chapters which portrayed the vicissitudes of the life of Rubab Khan, the famous star played by Jon Kabir.

Ferar Gaan: The first Bangladeshi short made entirely with a Smartphone 2

The plot revolves around him, his music, his fame, his losses and how he reclaims his lost kingdom with the strike of a moment of epiphany. Rubab Khan was very popular and surrounded by millions of fans, but his ego and snobbishness made him fall from the sky. On his prime, one day, a diehard fan of Rubab Khan, played by Sayeed Zaman Shawon, made his way to the backstage despite strict restrictions and asked for a selfie with his icon. In response, he got a tight slap and very rude behavior from his icon and later was thrown out by the guards. The very next morning, Rubab finds out that he has lost his gifted voice. And eventually, he lost everything including his fascinating career, his fans, and even his girlfriend, played by Azmeri Asha. 

Filmmaking with smartphone

The story of Ferar Gaan is penned by Tanvir Chowdhury, the person behind the operation of the camera is Sumon Sarkar and the uplifting music is composed by Fuad Al Muktadir. Ferar Gaan was shot entirely with Samsung Galaxy S10+ which features three rear professional grade cameras consisting of a 12MP wide lens, 12MP telephoto lens, and 16MP Ultra-Wide lens which records 4000 pixels horizontally video very easily. No additional lenses were being used to shoot the film. And the director didn’t do much manipulation after shooting, thanks to Samsung’s ground-breaking innovation.

Ferar Gaan: The first Bangladeshi short made entirely with a Smartphone 1

Anyone would love the fact about making a movie with the handiest yet advantageous device like Samsung S10+ that they can make a very quick decision and perform creative execution albeit spending very less than shooting with the equipment screams movie camera. As Soderbergh said, ‘If you want the lens on the wall, you don’t have to cut a hole in the wall and put the camera behind it. It’s a great tool.’

The creative duo Shafayet Mansoor Rana and Sumon Sarkar carried out an experiment with a spontaneous style which delivered the audiences a worth-watching 40-minutes story of redemption. That has the merit to revive the viewers with sparkling momentum. 

French movie “Fahim” to portray the story of Bangladeshi chess prodigy

With the movies that we are expecting to excite us head over heels, Fahim is that one movie that will leave us with tears, joy and a roller coaster of emotions. An unexpected french treat about a Bangladeshi champion.

Acted by Ahmed Assad, this French movie just might get us into the lives of the chess champion Fahim Mohammed and the obstacles he survived through it all.

The story of a champion in hiding

Fearing of abduction, Fahim Mohammad and his father are forced to flee from their hometown Bangladesh. Away from home, the father and son settle for Paris. Fahim and his father continue to live in Paris as illegal immigrants after their application seeking political asylum is rejected. Fearful of what the future may hold, both father and son continue to fight for the little champion’s dreams.

Fahim’s passion and love for chess lead him to meet with Sylvian, one of the best coaches in France. Their bittersweet relationship teaches him the purpose of putting his intellect into perspective. Fahim’s love for chess shows how he battles in the French Championship all the while tries to fit in a new country, tackling the pressure of expulsion and meeting new friends.

From “A Clandestine King” to a heartwarming movie

Fahim: The story of a brilliant Bangladeshi chess prodigy 1
Fahim Mohammad from the age of 11 has mastered the art of chess with the help of his father. Source: Google

A Clandestine King is an autobiographical story written by Fahim Mohammad himself. This heartwarming story of a struggling eight-year-old Bangladeshi in the world of chess is now being adapted to screen by director Pierre François Martin-Laval and produced by Patrick Godeau.

The movie is to be released on October, 2019.

Touquir Ahmed is creating a Bangladeshi Feluda and here’s your first look!

For any book-lover Bengali, from this side of the border or the other, the name Satyajit Ray is one that’s very close to the heart. His short stories, novels, horrors, thrillers- they’ve all been a huge part of all our childhood. And the largest of them all is the hero we all looked up to growing up, Pradosh Chandra Mitra, or who we know him more as, Feluda.

Soumitra Chatterjee was the very first portrayal of Feluda on the silver screens

Read more: Is Feluda coming to Hollywood?

A Bangladeshi Feluda?

Sharp wit, an even sharper tongue, piercing eyes, tall, mysterious- this enigmatic character has been attempted to be portrayed by generations after generations. The list of visionaries who had their own vision for Feluda includes Satyajit Ray himself, his son Sandeep Ray and also many other writers and directors.  The latest and most intriguing addition to this list is our very own Tauquir Ahmed, who’s shooting a web series on Feluda from 21st April, in various locations of Dhaka and Chittagong.

Sabyasachi has played the character for the longest period of time

Even after decades of Feluda’s arrival, there have never been any attempts at large to create and show his persona in our cultural sphere. All the dramas, plays that have been made, have been at a small scale, never adding much justice to this stellar character of Bengali literature.

The latest series about Feluda saw an Indian Feluda solving cases in Bangladesh’s context. It was still not our own Feluda.

The closest we came to presenting this iconic series was the Feluda series in bioscope- but even in that series, the titular characters of Feluda, Topshe and Laalmohan Babu were played by prominent actors from West Bengal, with Bangladesh providing with the background and Bangladeshi actors portraying only minor parts.

Hopefully, we’ll be able to rectify the situation a bit with a Bangladeshi actor playing the main part and the web series being produced solely in Bangladesh.

Stellar cast and crew

Considering the situation at hand, Tauquir Ahmed has enough awards and recognition under his belt to reassure the avid fans on the project’s success. His different outlook on Bangla cinema and TV has helped the industry gain a lot of the international acclamation it has today.

The entire cast has not been announced yet, only who’s going to portray Feluda and its Ahmed Rubel. We do see Abul Kalam Azad and Abul Hayat in some latest stills but details have not been divulged yet.

Ahmed Rubel, our own Feluda at last?

Given the performer and the character, so far it seems to be the most understandable match. For those of you who can’t place Ahmed Rubel, he is mainly a theatre and television actor, who also has proved his acting chops in films like “Bachelor: the circle”, “Guerilla”, “Chandrokoktha”, “The last Thakur” etc which are far from mainstream. Now the production house claims to have some sort of surprise in store for the two sidekicks- Topshe and Laalmohon Babu, and we hope its more Bangladeshi actor, with the originality of the character preserved.

In a country full of intense Bengali readers, it’s been a shame to not have our own version of Feluda, Topshe, Laalmohon and Maganlal Meghraj. About time we walk in the right direction.

Chris Hemsworth wraps up filming “DHAKA”, the film not filmed in Dhaka

Chris Hemsworth released photos and videos straight from the set of “Dhaka” on his Instagram account recently. The Australia-born star has apparently wrapped up filming his parts in the movie.

No, you probably will not run into Chris this week

To clarify, he was never in Dhaka, the city itself. The movie was filmed in Thailand and India. Those who ventured into Chris and the rest of the crew’s Instagram saw rickshaws and trucks with Bangla written on them. That was just part of a great set building.

An action thriller

In “Dhaka”, Hemsworth plays a mercenary called Tyler Rake. His character is hired by an Indian businessman to retrieve said businessman’s kidnapped son, who is held in Dhaka, the capital of Bangladesh in the action thriller. Hemsworth’s character is described as a physically competent man of vulnerable emotional state. And Hemsworth isn’t the only familiar face from the Marvel Cinematic Universe franchise in the movie. Sam Hargrave makes his feature directorial debut with this film. For those unaware, Hargrave is MCU character Captain America’s stunt double. Stranger things star David Harbour is also one of the supporting casts in the movie.

The “Marvel” factor?

The Russo brothers, directors of several MCU movies including Captain America: Winter Soldier and Avengers: Infinity war, are producing “Dhaka” through their independent production house. Although Hemsworth’s parts in the movie have been wrapped up, the production is expected to continue at least until March.  We don’t have a concrete release date as of right now. So we’ll just have to wait and see how a depiction of our capital city pans out in a Hollywood film.

If you think about it, Dhaka is a character in the film too, since it’s being portrayed by some other, flashier, perhaps better looking city.