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Balukabela.com world-premiered in London

Kolkata: In the first ever Bengali film festival in Europe, debutante director Partho Sen`s Balukabela.com was on Saturday world-premiered in London, days before its local release.

Starring Parambrata Chatterjee, Rudranil Ghosh and Locket Chatterjee, the rom-com was screened at the prestigious Harrow Art Centre before a over 500-strong audience, consisting of expatriate Bengalis and Asians and members of the local media.

"It is the first time a Bengali film was premiered in Europe even before its release," Sayantan Das Adhikary, one of the organisers, told PTI over phone from London.

"Film journalists from the local media, voicing the expatriate community, as well as UK-based correspondents liked the film though the post-production work was yet to be fully over," he claimed.

Param, who had his masters in film and tv production from the University of Bristol, has a wide following among the NRIs here post-Kahaani, Adhikary said.

"There was a a big crowd waiting for him and the other actors like Paoli Dam whose `Elar Char Adhyay` will also be screened at the festival. Paoli is also equally popular after her Hate Story," he said.

The `Pratidin Probash Parboni Film Festival`, conceptualized and executed by Panchamukhee, a registered charity of UK, began on May 18 and will continue till May 20.

The Balukabela.com storyline follows a newly married couple portrayed by Parambrata and Locket on a hush-hush honeymoon trip, while another track revolves around four other romantic couples.

The firs exclusively Bengali film festival in Europe held to give the NRIS an idea about the contemporary changes in the industry will also see the first time screening of some other recent critically acclaimed works.

"We had to turn away many as the auditorium was filled and people had to stand in the aisle to watch. " Adhikary said about the audience turnout on the premier day.

"We plan to take the films to other parts of the country. There is a sizeable Bengali population of about 2.5 lakh in the UK spread over places like Edinburgh, Glasgow, and Birmingham," Adhikary said.

The festival package will also mark the first European screening of director Anik Dutta`s popular debut film Bhooter Bhobishyot, Bappaditya Bandopadhyay`s period piece on anarchists of the 1930s `Elar Char Adhay`, Arun Roy`s `Egaro`, on the historic IFA Shield win of Mohun Bagan in 1911, Suman Ghosh`s `Nobel Chor`, Sandip Ray`s `Royal Bengal Rahasya` on popular fictional sleuth Feluda and Aniruddha Roy Chowdhury`s `Aparajita Tumi`.

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