Director Anirban Bose, who is gearing up for his upcoming directorial ‘Aye Zindagi’ starring veteran actress Revathi, mentioned that the actress was sensitised to the profession of a hospital grief counsellor to bring out the essence of the part in the movie.
The medical drama film, which is written and directed by Bose, is based on a true story of a 26-year-old liver cirrhosis patient, Vinay Chawla whose unlikely bond with a grief counsellor rekindles his hope and faith in life.
The director, known for his novels like ‘Bombay Rains’, ‘Bombay Girls’, ‘Mice in Men’ and ‘The Death of Mitali Dutto’, shared, “As a physician, I am always amazed by a grief counsellor’s job. A grief counsellor goes and talks to the families who have lost a loved one. The counsellor tells the family how the loved one who is brain dead can become an organ donor.”
Shedding light on the role of a grief counsellor, he said that they have to talk to a stranger who is in a crisis and is grieving after the loss of a loved one, “You are trying to convince them that somebody else will benefit, somebody who will never get to say thank you to them. In India, the success rate is about 70 to 80 percent. The job is so difficult and that is the beauty of organ transplantation.”
According to Bose, grief counsellors need to have composure and nerves of steel.
Talking about the film’s lead actress, he said he had a discussion with Revathi and she immediately grasped the character, “She understands organ donation. Revathi is the first person in India to sign up for an organ donor card. She’s seen the families, suffering and seen benefits, so she knows what organ transplantation does and she got it so beautifully. I was blessed that she is somebody who was already sensitised to grief counselling.”
He showed some clips of the actual person. “They gave her the physical aspect of what this person is like… very middle class, not conservative but intelligent. Not flashy but a hero in an ordinary way. The heroism is very rooted in who they are as a person, and Revathi got it. She is just brilliant,” he concluded.
‘Aye Zindagi’, which also features Satyajeet Dubey, Mrinmayee Godbole and Hemant Kher, will release across India and North America on October 14.