Acclaimed filmmaker Mostofa Sarwar Farooki said on Friday that with the release of his debut web series ‘Ladies & Gentlemen’, it feels to be relieved from his four-year-long absence with any major content release.
“The lifespan of a filmmaker is only a few decades. In the blink of an eye, life is gone, the power to work is gone, and there is very little opportunity to work in this short time. If four years go by without any reason, that is utterly and understandably disheartening,” he shared via a Facebook post from his verified profile on Friday.
He went on saying, “However - after many months, I came out of long depression and saw a bright morning, and my gratitude goes to those who wake up at night watching ‘Ladies & Gentlemen’ and feel the need to write two words! Thank you all, keep them coming!”
Farooki made a monumental comeback with his maiden web series ‘Ladies & Gentlemen’ on Friday midnight on ZEE5 Global, the largest OTT platform for South Asian content.
The eight-episode series globally premiered at Friday midnight and viewers have been sharing highly positive reactions on social media platforms regarding the content.
Produced by actress Nusrat Imrose Tisha, directed by Farooki and shot by globally acclaimed cinematographer Alexey Kosorukov, ‘Ladies & Gentlemen’ revolves around the life of an ordinary girl, her emotional journey to become the voice of each and every working woman in Bangladesh through demonstrating a narrative to tackle social themes regarding gender inequality, rape culture, patriarchy and others.
The lead character of Sabila is played by Tasnia Farin, alongside an ensemble casting of popular actors including noted thespian Afzal Hossain, Hasan Masood, Maria Nur, Mukit Zakaria, Partha Barua, Iresh Zaker, and more.
The official trailer of the series was launched at a virtual press conference on June 14. The press conference was joined by the castings and associates of the series including director Farooki, Chief Business Officer of ZEE5 Global Archana Anand, lead actor Tasnia Farin, Partha Barua, Hasan Masood, Iresh Zaker, Mukit Zakaria, Maria Nur, music director Pavel Areen, and from the crew producer Nusrat Tisha, Tanvir Hossain and DOP Alexey Kosorukov.
Farooki’s last theatrical work was late Indian actor Irrfan Khan starrer 2017 film No Bed of Roses (Doob), which was the Bangladeshi entry for the Best Foreign Language Film at the 91st Academy Awards.
His upcoming film project is "No Land's Man" featuring Bollywood’s prominent actor Nawazuddin Siddiqui and Bangladeshi singer turned actor Tahsan Khan, while Oscar-winning Indian music director AR Rahman joined the film as its music composer.
However, his 2019 feature film "Shonibar Bikel" (Saturday Afternoon), a Bangladesh-German co-production film based on the Holey Artisan Bakery tragedy, has been denied by the Film Censor Board of Bangladesh, which had its world premiere at the Moscow International Film Festival 2019 and showcased in major festivals around the world including the Busan International Film Festival.
A one-take technical feat, the film was banned on the grounds that it might deepen the religious divide in the country. With an ensemble cast of Nusrat Imrose Tisha, Zahid Hasan, Mamunur Rashid, Iresh Zaker, Nader Chowdhury, Gousul Alam Shaon, Indian-Bengali film actor-director Parambrata Chatterjee and Palestinian actor Eyad Hourani - the film has also received awards in various festivals around the world including the Kommersant Prize and the Russian Federation of Film Critics Jury Prize at the Moscow International Film Festival (2019), Kumamoto City Award from Fukuoka International Film Festival (2020), NETPAC Award and High School Award at the Vesoul International Film Festival for Asian Cinema (2020), and more.