{ Page-Title / Story-Title }

News Hindi

Small towns are filled with quirky, colourful characters, says Chaman Bahaar director Apurva Dhar Badgaiyann

Netflix will start streaming the Yoodlee Films production, starring Jitendra Kumar and Ritika Badiani, from Friday 19 June.

Our Correspondent

A week after its digital release Axone (2020), Yoodlee Films is readying for its next, Chaman Bahaar (2020), which will be released tomorrow. Directed by first-time filmmaker Apurva Dhar Badgaiyann, the film tells the story of unrequited love in small-town India.

Jitendra Kumar, recently seen in Shubh Mangal Zyaada Saavdhan (2020) and the web-series Panchayat, plays Billu, an ambitious young man who starts a paan (betel leaf) shop in Raipur. His fortunes change when a new family with a teenage daughter moves in across the road from him. Billu’s shop becomes the local hangout as all the young men hang around for a glimpse of the elusive Rinku (Ritika Badiani).

Speaking about his character, Jitendra said he was eager to see audiences’ response to him. “This is a layered character — torn between love and commerce, Billu struggles to express his feelings for this girl, and yet find ways to keep the other quintessential roadside Romeos at bay. It has nuances and an arc that was a delight to explore in the film,” the actor said.

Badgaiyann, who has written and directed the feature, relates deeply with the film. “I have grown up in many small towns because of the nature of my father’s job,” he said. “The cool thing about smaller towns is that they are filled with quirky and colourful characters. When I moved out of Chhattisgarh, I developed an outsider’s perspective to my own people and that made tapping the milieu and its inhabitants easier.

"The difficult part to crack was the plot, which was enabled at the right time when a friend narrated a real-life incident. For me, this is an interplay of interesting characters I might have encountered in my life, who all live in this upcoming small town, all trying to find their place in the sun in a way. It’s a personal film and I have tried my best to make it a fun ride for the audience.”

Actress Ritika Badiani, who plays the object of everyone’s affection, said her role was very special. “The role demanded that I establish a strong connect without saying much,” she explained. “I was very particular about my body language, gestures and expressions so that my character got portrayed correctly. What really helped was my co-star Jitendra Kumar, who made it so much better because as an actor he is extremely enthusiastic and gives it his 100%. Professionally as well as personally, I learnt a lot from him.”

Siddharth Anand Kumar, vice-president of films and television at Saregama, stated that Chaman Bahaar “is a charming small-town tale that subverts the classic tropes of Indian romance films and shows us the weird unrequited and one-sided love story of a small-time Romeo. It captures the dreams and desires of a burgeoning town, on the cusp of welcoming many possibilities of lucrative business and commerce.”

The Netflix film also stars Bhuvan Arora, Alam Khan, Dhirendra Kumar Tiwari and Ashwani Kumar.

Related topics