OTTplay Logo
settings icon
profile icon

Exclusive! Nayan Rahasya director Sandip Ray: I can’t please everybody. I take the young audience’s feedback seriously.

Sandip Ray’s Nayan Rahasya is based on his father’s work of the same name and Indraneil Sengupta, Abhijit Guha, and Ayush Das are all set to play Feluda, Jatayu, and Topshe again

Exclusive! Nayan Rahasya director Sandip Ray: I can’t please everybody. I take the young audience’s feedback seriously.
Sandip Ray

Last Updated: 08.26 PM, May 05, 2024


Indraneil Sengupta, Abhijit Guha, and Ayush Das are all set to play Feluda, Jatayu, and Topshe in Sandip Ray’s Nayan Rahasya. Besides the three main characters, the film also features Abhinava Barua, Deb Chatterjee, and others. The film which is based on Satyajit Ray’s eponymous novel delves into the adventure of a young boy who has the superhuman power of seeing numbers. In a chat with OTTplay, Sandip Ray talked about the reason for choosing the story, his favourite Feluda, and how he handles criticism. Read on…


Why did you choose Nayan Rahasya? It is one of the least popular stories of Feluda…

Yes, it is also one of the stories that was written way later. I did Hatyapuri before this one. Right at the beginning of the film, there is a scene involving a child actor Abhinava Barua. We selected him through an interview and when we went to the shooting, we realised that he is extremely intelligent and smart. He is expressive and technically aware – this is not a common trait among children of his age. I was amazed. He did not have any dialogue and he executed it cleverly. At that time I thought that he was a rare find and since I remember all the stories quite vividly, I knew he would be a perfect fit for Nayan Rahasya at his age. I did not want to work on two Feluda one after the other. I thought I would make another film in between. But this one is for Abhinava. I thought we should do it before he grows up.

While you make Feluda films regularly, your non-Feluda films are often ignored. Don’t you think?

I make other films also. However, Feluda is an iconic character, his films attract a lot more attention. People remember Feluda films. Unfortunately, people don’t remember the other works as much. However, I’ve directed other films. Now after this one, I think Feluda should rest a little and I will plan some other films. At the same time, it is great fun to work on Feluda. And we all get to travel to many places. That’s a bonus. The stories are beautiful, the characters are fun. Finally, there is a demand. People keep on asking me when the next Feluda will arrive. Last year, people kept asking why there was no new Feluda film. However, I also don’t like to make Feluda films one after the other.

Do you think there are too many Feludas in Bengali’s culture space now?

We should space out Feluda a bit. There was a time when we used to get too much of Byomkesh Bakshi. Feluda shows are perhaps not as many as Byomkesh shows. I have kept the big screen rights of Feluda with me. OTTs have some rights. There was a time when OTT was not as popular. Now the scene is different. Platforms are bigger and more popular. We need to space things out. In fact, this happens abroad as well. With Poirot, we have multiple films and ITV television series with David Suchet. Kenneth Branagh has acquired the rights and he has already directed three films. So yes, such things happen everywhere. I feel we should not make Feluda films or web series too often. It will not be as harmful as it is now if we can space things out.

Did you watch any of the Feluda web series? Do you regret your decision to give away the right to any of these?

Yes, I did. For the longest time, people taunted me saying that I had been keeping the rights of my father’s work away from everyone. People often questioned me on that then. And now some people are asking me why I have given the rights away. You can’t make everybody happy. I honestly felt that Feluda should also be interpreted by others. It would be curious to watch others’ take on the character. I have now given the rights of Feluda in the digital space. The rights of some of the short stories (by Satyajit Ray) are also given to some OTT platforms. The Bengali rights are with me. I have not given the rights of Shonku to anyone. It is a difficult job too. The budget goes up for Shonku. And then it involves shooting abroad and shooting with foreigners. We will need VFX and all.

You worked with Abir Chatterjee, Sabyasachi Chakrabarty, and Indraneil Sengupta as Feluda. Who is your favorite?

I worked with Sabyasachi for the longest time. We started in 1995 - 2016. I have a soft corner for him. We developed a certain chemistry. Moreover, he wanted to play Feluda and hence the character was not imposed on him. It was his dream role. I have a kind of respect and affection for him. However, after a point, one can no longer play Feluda.

Indraneil also wanted to play Feluda. Hence, the character was not imposed on him either. However, when he first came, I thought he wasn’t as mature as he needed to be. The first time I met him, he used a lot of English in our conversation. As a result, I became unsure if he could bring the ‘Bangaliana’ of Feluda into the character. Later, after a few years when he came back again, he consciously avoided English and emphasised Bengali in the conversation (laughs). He was conscious. By then he aged a little more. Feluda needs a bit of gravitas as he is a senior figure for the audience. Besides, he was playing Kiriti at one point in time. I told him that it would be difficult if he continued to play Kiriti.

That was the trouble with Abir. I worked with him and he is very dear to me. However, he was playing Byomkesh by then. I always feel there is room for an identity crisis if the same actor plays more than one similar detective character.

Every time you make a Feluda film, it goes under the scanner. People offer a lot of feedback and advice. Even with Nayan Rahasya, a lot of people are talking and criticising the trailer. How do you deal with the criticism?

Yes, that happens a lot and that’s meant to happen in today’s time. I can’t please everybody. I filter criticism. Everybody, across years, faces criticism. You cannot please everybody. I think it was only Chaplin (Charlie) who could please everyone. With social media in place, everyone has access to express their opinion. One can surely not like my work. Now my point is one has to explain why they did not like it logically instead of a sweeping statement. Also, if one judges a film, its direction, cinematography, and acting, just by its trailer, it makes no sense to me. If one can actually judge a film by its two-minute-long video they must be some film connoisseur. Meanwhile, I take the young audience’s feedback seriously. They are very honest with their opinion. What they say is often honest and without any pretence. Today’s four-year-old is different from our four-year-old. I take them seriously. They make me think of the changes we could incorporate. They don’t have the realisation of saying something to me or and something else at the back. They watch the film keenly.

Get the latest updates in your inbox