“Burqa Boxers” Director Brings Story To Mainstream Cinema
Nila is a freelance journalist and Clinical Psychology Doctoral student…
In 2016, when US-based director Alka Raghuram made the documentary “Burqa Boxers” on the burqa-boxing community of Kidderpore, Kolkata, she had also dreamt about making a feature film based on the same community. And she did it in style by announcing, “In The Ring,” at the Festival de Cannes.
The film is being produced by Sreyashii Sengupta, founder and managing director of Singapore-based Darpan Global, and Souvikk Dasgupta, founder, and partner at Oriizon Global. Sengupta was at Cannes to seek collaborators for the project in sales, distribution, and co-production.
The movie “In The Ring” already has a mix of Indian and Bangladeshi artists like Mithila Palkar in a double role for the first time, Jaaved Jaaferi, and Bangladeshi actor Siam Ahmed. Razia Shabman, one of the first woman boxers from Kolkata, will be playing the role of a boxing coach.
In a statement, the makers said, “The film is a psychological thriller about Shama, a seventeen-year-old boxer who exchanges places with her double to fight in the national championship when she is framed in her aunt’s murder.”
In a statement on why she backed the film, Sengupta said, “Alka’s story touched me from the word go. Growing up in Kolkata and always searching for stories from my roots whilst in Singapore, I was unaware of this community of spirited women till I watched her documentary. The intensity and power of such a story made into a feature gives it a voice like no other. I am proud to adorn the producer’s hat for a project with such incredible cross-border cast and a brave and talented director like Alka.”
Alka Raghuram started writing the script for “In The Ring” while she was making her documentary “Burqa Boxers.” She told Cinestaan, “While the immersion into their world allowed me to tell the documentary story in the style of ‘realism, it also made me want to explore the interiority of the characters via a more stylized narrative and style. In that sense, this particular version of the story has been over a decade in the making, waiting for the right family of collaborators to bring it to life. I am thrilled to have found a home in them.”
“In The Ring” will go on the floors in December in India.
Nila is a freelance journalist and Clinical Psychology Doctoral student who was born and raised in New York City. There is very little she loves more than Harry Potter marathons, pizza, 90s Bollywood, bagels, falooda, and her family. She hopes to use her powers for good by spreading mental health awareness and positivity in the South Asian community through her love of writing.