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Kolkata International Film Festival: Soumitra in frames and on screens

Titled “Soumitra Chatterjee — The Journey of a Legend”, the exhibition opened for the public on January 10 and will continue till January 15.

Written by Santanu Chowdhury | Kolkata |
January 12, 2021 4:24:48 am
Kolkata International Film Festival, Kolkata Film Festival, Soumitra Chatterjee, Bengali actor, Kolkata news, Bengal news, Indian express newsVisitors at the exhibition in Kolkata on Monday. (Photo: Partha Paul)

An exhibition on the life and works of legendary Bengali actor Soumitra Chatterjee, who died last November at the age of 85, is drawing his admirers and fans to the 26th Kolkata International Film Festival (KIFF).

Titled “Soumitra Chatterjee — The Journey of a Legend”, the exhibition opened for the public on January 10 and will continue till January 15.

The exhibition features several photographs of the actor from his six-decade-long career. A video collage of his film and stage performances is being screened on a giant LED screen for visitors. Costumes worn by Chatterjee in his famous plays have been put on display. Paintings by the actor have also been made available for public viewing for the first time.

Chatterjee’s daughter Poulomi Basu said, “The organisers have taken care of the minutest details, from the selection of photographs to overall arrangements. I provided them the costumes used by Baba on stage. I also handed them some stills I had of him. I am happy about the way the entire exhibition has been organised.”

The exhibition has divided into two segments — one on his works with filmmaker Satyajit Ray, and another on his films with other prominent directors.

A wall has been set up depicting his films ranging from Apur Sansar to the recent Mayurakshi. Separate segments have been created to showcase Chatterjee’s works as a thespian, a poet and an artist. The final segment shows his achievements throughout his career.

Meanwhile, Bengali film Avijatrik, which takes forward the story of Apu from Satyajit Ray’s critically acclaimed Apu Trilogy (1955-1959), premiered at Nandan 2 on Monday.

Directed by Subhrajit Mitra, the film stars Arjun Chakrabarty as Apu, a character immortalised by Chatterjee in Apur Sansar. Sabyasachi Chakrabarty, Ditipriya Roy, and Sreelekha Mitra also feature in prominent roles. The film has been selected as one of the official entries to the International Film Festival of India (IFFI).

Talking about his role, Arjun Chakrabarty said, “I tried not to think of the baggage that the role brings. It is always concerning to think about what the audience might think of me. My director wanted me to bring to the table what was uniquely my own, he did not want me to copy anyone. My director only asked me to follow the script.”

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