The Lineup has released and we thought it was time for you to meet a few of its significant team members. Introducing Utsav Sarkar, who plays struggling poet Shayantan Roy in The Lineup, and is also the writer of our story. Growing up, Utsav wrote stories beyond his years. When he was nine years old, his teacher would always look forward to reading his deep and meaningful stories while his classmates were still stuck on dolls and toys. An early sign of an artist, Utsav played the tabla and took part in school plays. By 19, he was doing commercial theatre. He knew then that he had found his calling. Found it and how! Utsav was bad at painting, arts and crafts, and other extra-curriculars in school; chose to do theatre as a way to escape them. How fate and talent came together to conspire for his benefit is simply amazing.
“I was not cast for a part in a play I so badly wanted. I’d slogged myself, prepared for months, but I didn’t get it. I took it hard. Self-doubt seeped in. To cope, I started writing. Plays, screenplays, whatever came to mind. At that point in time, I just wanted to feel better about myself. One of the short films I wrote during this time was bought by a company for a handsome amount. And it is from here that my luck looked up and smiled. In a way, my foray into screenwriting started because of rejection.”
An MA in theatre, Utsav then started learning to screenwrite arduously and excelled at making a living out of it. He has also written many plays and even performed some of them! A theatre artist for a decade, he has played primary parts in ‘Brahm’ of Zee 5, a Bengali web series, and many other notable projects. He stumbled upon gold when he wrote The Lineup. He went to several open mics and came across a guy in office formals instead of a typical poet’s ensemble of kurta, jeans, and glasses. After his performance, this guy took a client’s call. On further investigation, Utsav found that he was working a full-time job to support his family and doing poetry in the meantime for himself. This is how The Lineup came to be. Basing Roy’s character on him, Utsav gives us a power-packed performance and the whole BuddyBits team can’t wait for you to watch it!
Utsav treats story-telling as his religion not just because it’s his living but because he believes there is no greater joy in the world. To be able to give his audience something new to think about, to put a smile on their face and inspire them, is what he lives for. He originally wanted to play Anand’s character, but he was asked to audition for Shayantan Roy.
Shayantan is an aspiring poet who wants fame and everything that goes with it, but is stuck in a 9 to 5 job to feed his family. He is an ambivert who keeps things to himself and only talks in poetry. I relate to him in the sense that things we are most passionate about may not always fetch us a livelihood and sometimes we have to make-do doing a job we don’t like. However, Shayantan’s struggles are harder than mine as I am fortunate enough to do what I love for a living. He doesn’t have the liberty to do so, and therein lies his angst.
The Lineup explores a world never seen before. Everybody has that something that makes them immensely happy which they want to do for a living. Not everyone is that fortunate though, and it is what we mean to showcase in this unique web-series through the world of poetry. Invest in the lives of these characters and I guarantee you’ll have a great giveaway at the end of the show.
Despite lulls in work, tons and tons of rejection, Utsav kept on keeping on. Because of this, he came to this profound realization that ‘doing what you love’ at the risk of financial security is not to be romanticized. Hailing from a regular middle-class family with a preset bunch of responsibilities, he emphasizes on the importance of sustaining yourself while not letting your passion burn out.
It’s difficult to give your all to the vocation you love. If you devote just five minutes every day to get better at it, it will give you much-needed hope that you will make it someday. Always remember, you lose only when you give up. Stay in touch with your craft, believe in yourself and you will make it happen.