Bollywood Society » Soumyajit Majumdar’s “Joyguru,” marks first cinematic collaboration between India-USA-UK-France, will have presence at Cannes 2024(Cannes Film Market)

Soumyajit Majumdar’s “Joyguru,” marks first cinematic collaboration between India-USA-UK-France, will have presence at Cannes 2024(Cannes Film Market)

by Aruna Purve

With the ever-increasing craze for universally appealing local stories in global entertainment, the world is gradually recognising India as a global content powerhouse, especially due to filmmakers like Soumyajit Majumdar (multi-award winning feature #Homecoming). Soumyajit’s recent venture “Joyguru,” (currently in final scripting stage) promises to be a riveting Hindi musical odyssey that unveils the extraordinary life of Sangeet Natak Akademi Awardee living legend Parvathy Baul, an iconic figure in the world of global music and mysticism who has performed in more than 40 countries. In the presence of Soumyajit and producers Aparna and Aniruddha Dasgupta ( Adited Motion Pictures,USA) the film got announced by Parvathy Baul herself in Times Square and Oregon respectively as part of her USA Baul Yatra performances.

Baul is an age old spiritual tradition of song and dance ( Bhakti Yogic parampara) originating from undivided Bengal which has inspired greats like Rabindranath Tagore, Bob Dylan, Allen Ginsberg and many great artists. Under the visionary direction of Soumyajit Majumdar, audiences shall be transported to the vibrant heart of Baul community and culture .Through captivating storytelling, “Joyguru” not only celebrates the soul-stirring melodies of Baul music but also marks a milestone as the first-ever authentic exploration of this genre in Hindi cinema.

Fuelled by an unparalleled spirit of collaboration, “Joyguru” stands as the historic flagship Indo-USA-UK-France co-production, uniting talents from across the globe to create a cinematic masterpiece that knows no borders. This dynamic partnership ensures a kaleidoscope of cultures and narratives, promising an unforgettable viewing experience for audiences worldwide. Reportedly, the principal photography is slated to begin in 2025. Ace Indian cinematographer Ravi Verman ( Ponniyin Selvan, Sanju , Ram Leela, Tamaasha, Barfi) will be shooting the film.

At its core, “Joyguru” is a celebration of cultural heritage and artistic expression, shining a spotlight on the timeless wisdom of the Baul tradition. Parvathy Baul’s remarkable journey in the Baul path ( Baul is recognized by UNESCO as Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity), serves as a beacon of inspiration, spanning continents and enriching souls with its profound teachings.

Produced by California based producers Aniruddha and Aparna Dasgupta ( Adited Motion Pictures – USA/India), pioneers in the distribution of South Asian cinema in North America and Canada, along with Soumyajit Majumdar’s LOK Arts Collective ( India / UK) , “Joyguru” will bring out the true essence of the Baul path by showcasing the fascinating life story of Parvathy Baul. Complemented by co-producers Munsur Ali (Chairman – London City Corporation Culture and Heritage, Founder-Director Moringa Studios) and Paris based Chayan Sarkar ( Ambassador of the city of Toulouse, France) , the film will transcend mere entertainment to become a transformative cinematic experience.

Aniruddha and Aparna Dasgupta shared a joint statement, “With ‘Joyguru,’ we aim to bridge cultures and hearts through the universal language of Baul music ,fostering a deeper understanding and appreciation of this timeless and age old beautiful tradition. Our collaboration represents a harmonious blend of creativity and diversity, and we are excited to make a film that originates from our roots – Bengal where we were born and brought up in. .”

Soumyajit Majumder added, “This is not only a film, this is my prayer. It’s been almost two years that I have been researching on this film. Baul is a global phenomenon, however in India Baul is misrepresented and often identified only as folk music. Parvathy ji’s life is testimony to the fact that the spiritual power ofbBaul can transform lives . The film is based on her life journey but this won’t be a biopic. “

Parvathy shares “For over a year Soumyajit has done a lot of hardwork in researching and preparing for this story and I appreciate his commitment and sincerity for this purpose. It’s not an endeavour to tell the story about yet another individual’s life. Right from the start, the goal is clear to serve this beautiful, age old , timeless spiritual tradition of Baul. Its ought to be essentially seva ( selfless service) offering to all the Baul masters and the tradition.
It is also the most appropriate time to bring Baul wisdom to the wider audience via this medium for I have conviction in the central message of this path , that has profound healing and transformational touch.”

As “Joyguru” prepares to make its presence felt for further collaboration enquiries from the global film market at the Cannes Film Market in 2024, it heralds a new era in Indian cinema, where the universal language of Baul music and philosophy serves as a bridge between nations and cultures. From Kolkata to Cannes, this exhilarating journey shall help the world discover the magic of Baul music, igniting the spirit of harmony and unity in a world yearning for connection and enlightenment.

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