What if a person realises, every day, that your life is trapped in a game of number crunching? What if, amidst all the luxury and a posh circle of acquaintances, he keeps struggling against loneliness and feeling poor? Perhaps, someday, he finally decides to leave behind the suffocating life in the city and run away, towards some unknown destination. The only link to the life he has built is a number plate that says Dhaka Metro, stuck to his car as the single reminder of where he started. During his road trip to nowhere, he meets strangers who join his aimless journey. Gradually, he gets entangled in their mysterious, convoluted situations. And, with each situation, he keeps finding a missing piece of the puzzle that his life has become. The surreal journey of this man searching for himself is the story of Dhaka Metro, a web series created by National Award-winning Director, Amitabh Reza Chowdhury and stars Neville Ferdous Hasan and Aupee Karim.
Aditya Kabir, who heard Amitabh’s narration of the concept, translated it into a story within a matter of a single night. Amitabh wanted to turn this into a movie. But when producers heard the plot, they showed no interest in making a film out of it, even though they all appreciated the idea. Eventually, the idea got buried under a pile of other projects, until he received the offer to create a web series for the popular Bengali OTT platform, hoichoi. Amitabh knew exactly the story that would work!
The storyline of Dhaka Metro has been divided into nine episodes: Relation, Alienation, Recollection, Exemption, Incarceration, Self-Regulation, Ennui, Delusion, The Last Journey. The series was released on hoichoi, the leading digital platform for Bengali entertainment, on the 11th of April, 2019, just in time for Pohela Boishakh. The series is available exclusively for the subscribers of hoichoi.
hoichoi has earned enormous popularity among Bengalis all over the World. With a library of the Best Bengali films, original web series, songs, and music videos that add up to more than 2000 hours of content, hoichoi is the biggest and most prominent digital entertainment destination for Bengalis. Dhaka Metro is hoichoi’s initiative to produce the first original series in Bangladesh, to give the Bengali diaspora around the world a taste of Bangladesh’s finest performances. The users are required to download the ‘hoichoi’ app from the Android or iOS app store and Subscribe, to gain access to the content library of hoichoi, using their smartphones. They can also watch the contents using their PC and smart TV. The subscription fee can be paid in Bangladeshi currency using debit/credit cards, as well as any local Mobile Wallet.
While speaking about his first experience of making a web series, Amitabh Reza Chowdhury said, “The concept of web series will broaden the horizon for our media industry, and I loved working on this project. I’m confident that the viewers will appreciate our hard work. It is a dark comedy and simultaneously, a thriller, which will give the audience something fresh and unique to watch.
Dhaka Metro perfectly captures the chaos and loneliness of urban life in the form of symbolism. The restrictions associated with the other popular media platforms do not apply to web platforms, giving artists and creators their creative freedom. As a result, Amitabh Reza Chowdhury has used this freedom to showcase the harsh reality of life surviving in the city - almost in the form of a satire. The enigma and gloom in the screenplay have been symbolised dramatically on the screen by shooting in the dreamy, fog-laden landscape of North Bengal, thus setting a mood of melancholia for the series.
hoichoi Bangladesh Lead Sakib R Khan said, “Besides Bengalis living in India and Bangladesh, the global Bangla-speaking population, too, has been able to experience the joy and beauty of Bengali entertainment because of hoichoi. There is always a wide variety in the demands and tastes of viewers, even if they all speak the same language. Plus, who doesn’t enjoy uniqueness? To prioritise this two-fold demand, we are keen to add more Bangladeshi shows and movies to the content library on hoichoi. We have started a number of local productions and will soon release our next big original series after Dhaka Metro.”