It’s not entirely uncommon for several films to have the same name. In most cases these films are separated by years and are made by different directors. Also, many of these films are usually re-adapted versions of the original stories they are based on.
One of the best examples in this regard is Devdas. The popular Sarat Chandra Chattopadhyay novel was first adapted for the big screen in 1928. It was directed by Naresh Mitra and was a silent film. Over the next nine decades, there have been at least eight known film adaptations of Devdas in India. That aside, the novel has been adapted for the big screen, both in Bangladesh and Pakistan.
Actor-director Pramathesh Barua adapted the film thrice for the big screen but each time in a different language. The Bengali, Hindi, and Assamese versions of Devdas were released in 1935, 1936, and 1937 respectively.
Bangladeshi director Chashi Nazrul Islam adapted Devdas twice and released the film under the same name in 1982 and 2013.
But in perhaps a first of sorts, it was actor-director Anjan Dutt who made two films having identical names, in the same language but with different content. Anjan made Byomkesh Bakshi in 2010 and 2015 respectively. Both films featured author Sharadindu Bandyopadhyay’s popular fictional detective Byomkesh Bakshi, and were murder mysteries. But the stories of the two films were different from each other. The 2010 film was based on Aadim Ripu, while the one released in 2015, was adapted from Kohen Kobi Kalidas. While Abir Chatterjee played Byomkesh in the first film, Jisshu Sengupta was cast as the sleuth in the 2015 adaptation.
‘Byomkesh’ has been added to the name of every film, featuring the fictional detective, since Anjan successfully revived the series in 2010. This was done for easy identification of the franchise. The films include Abar Byomkesh (2012), Byomkesh Phire Elo (2014), Byomkesh O Chiriyakhana (2016), and Byomkesh O Agniban (2017). Director Arindam Sil, meanwhile, made two films, Har Har Byomkesh (2015) and Byomkesh Pawrbo (2016), while Dibakar Banerjee released Detective Byomkesh Bakshy! (2015) in Hindi.
Anjan Dutt recently clarified that he won’t make another Byomkesh film in the future. He owned the film rights for Durgo Rahasya which he has passed on to Arindam. The latter will begin shooting for Byomkesh Gotro (based on Rokter Daag) soon and may adapt Durgo Rahasya sometime later this year.
Anjan’s next film Aami Ashbo Phirey releases on 13 April.