Starring the Bengal’s brand ambassador Shah Rukh Khan, an advertisement, at a length of 2 minutes highlights the vibrant and positive outlook to the State, and hence provides the necessary boost to the State’s tourism. From the slumpy and majestic Sunderbans, the glaring waters of the Teesta and other rivers to the alarmingly breath taking forests of North Bengal, the advertisement not only showcases the natural beauty of the state but also highlights the rich cultural heritage of Kolkata and in Tagore’s abode of Santiniketan. The video aims to cash in on the rich topography and biodiversity that thrives in the State that we proudly call ‘Paschim Bongo’.
With Rabindranath Tagore’s iconic ‘Banglar Mati, Banglar Jol’ (Bengal’s soil, Bengal’s water) playing in the background, we have the truly effervescent King Khan who provides an insight in to the resurgence of a new State altogether. Shah Rukh, who had been appointed as the brand ambassador for the State last year will be seen mouthing a string statement in the promotional video film which goes: ‘There is something special about Bengal’.
Directed by prolific National Award winning Bengali film maker Anirudhha Roy Choudhary, he gave full credit to West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee, who had been busy with the ad film from its inception. The concept as well as its improvisation was her prerogative and her brain child. Not just tourism, the ongoing economic advancements in the State has also been highlighted in the form of industrialization, agricultural growth and it brings the traditional indigenous in house craftsmen’s talents to the fore. Religious sites like the Kalighat, Dakshineshwar and the Belur Math have played an integral part of the ad clip. The clip ends with Shah Rukh Khan speaking in English and Bengali; the latter, with a near perfect accent. In the next few days the video will be released on national TV channels.
Part of the ‘Bengal Leads’ campaign to attract investors and tourists into the state, the two-minute promotional film talks of a new resurgent Bengal consistent with Rabindranath Tagore‘s dream of ‘Sonar Bangla’ (Golden Bengal).
Officials of the state information and cultural affairs department said a positive and vibrant image of the state will be created through a series of campaigns and advertisements fronted by King Khan.
Education, health and sports are also talked about in the video which has music by Shantanu Moitra.
State information and culture secretary, Mrs Nandini Chatterjee said the film will be telecast on local, national and international channels soon. A media plan will be ready within two weeks to chalk out the details, she said. The promotional film of Bengal comes ahead of a similar image makeover initiative of the UPA government that comes at a cost of a whopping Rs 100 crore. Mrs Chatterjee, however, refused to specify the production cost saying, “The amount that has been spent on the film is that which is usually needed for producing such a film. I will not say anything more”. “Shah Rukh Khan gave us his time and that is what’s most important to us,” she added. Shah Rukh had agreed to be the brand ambassador of the film and for remuneration, he had said that he was satisfied only with a fish fry. Directed by Aniruddha Roy Choudhury, the promotional film sends the message of Notun Bangla, Progotir Bangla with Shah Rukh Khan inviting people in Bengali to visit the state.
The title of the film ‘Bengal Leads’ has been coined by the Chief Minister herself. ‘Bengal Leads’ is an annual programme of the government and the phrase is already being used by many departments, Mrs Chatterjee said. The film showcases various tourist destination spots, handicrafts and handlooms, the culture and heritage of the state, industries, and the well known places and buildings. Infact, presenting the progress of the state in the new regime, the film includes shots like girls riding bicycles in Junglemahal. The two-minute promotional film in both Hindi and Bengali will serve as a curtain raiser for a series of films that will be telecast on specific areas.
“Separate films will be produced to focus each area,” said Mrs Chatterjee. The promotional film is being released ahead of the Kolkata Film Festival that is to be inaugurated by Amitabh Bachchan, she said.
Courtesy: The Statesman, Koimoi