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Bengal remembers Satyajit Ray on his 96th birth anniversary

Bengal remembers Satyajit Ray on his 96th birth anniversary

By Biswamoy Mukherjee and Pritha Lahiri Kolkata, May 2 (UNI) Standing tall at 6'-4' he not only dwarfed mere mortals, but strode the world of films like a colossus.
'Watching a Satyajit Ray film is like seeing the Sun or the Moon,' renowned Japanese film maker and Academy award winner Akira Kurosawa said of the Indian maestro who was eleven years his junior.
Ray went on to win the much coveted Oscar in 1992-- a lifetime achievement award.
He was fondly nick-named Manik (gem) by his mother Suprabha Devi on this day in 1921.
And a gem he was! Whatever he turned his hands to--films, literature, calligraphy or drawing, shone like gold.
He was also credited with creating the typeface 'Ray Roman' and designed exquisite and extraordinary book covers.
He also designed the logo of Nandan (Kolkata's cultural hub) in Bengali.
This illustrious son of Bengal was born in an equally distinguished family of Kolkata.
His grandfather Upendrakishore Ray (Roychowdhury) was an eminent writer, painter, a violin player and a composer.
He was also a pioneer in half-tone block making and founded one of the finest presses in the country-U.
Ray & Sons.
His father Sukumar Ray was a renowned poet, writer and illustrator of nonsense literature in the tradition of Lewis Carroll and Edward Lear.
On his 96th birth anniversary, Bengal today remembered the legendary film maestro, who not not only directed his films but wrote the scripts as well as the musical score.
He burst into the cinematic firmament with 'Pather Panchali' (Song of the Road) in 1955.
Subsequently he completed the trilogy with Aparajito (The Unvanquished) in 1956 and Apur Sansar(The world of Apu) in 1959.
The Apu Trilogy is frequently listed among the greatest films of all times and often cited as the greatest movies in the history of cinema.
The original music for the films was composed by Ravi Shankar.
These films are based on two Bengali novels written by Bibhutibhushan Bandopadhyay: Pather Panchali (1929) and Aparajito (1932).
The three films went on to win many national and international awards, including three National Film Awards and seven awards from the Cannes, Berlin and Venice Film Festivals.
The Bharat Ratna awardee is known for his humanistic approach to cinema.
His oeuvre covered the whole gamut of intricate inter-personal relations, but spoken in a lucid form.
He made films mainly in Bengali.
'Shatranj ke Khiladi' and 'Sadgati'(a documentary made for TV) were in Hindi.
He made several documentaries, among which special mention is made of 'Rabindranath Tagore', 'Sukumar Ray', 'Sikkim' and 'Inner Eye'.
His movies spoke of the common man's trials and tribulations.
Ray also showed his angst against corruption(Shakha Proshakha), regressive religious dogma (Ganashatru) or the meanness of man (Aguntuk).
His masterpieces included Kanchenjangha, Jalsaghar, Devi, Abhijan, Charulata, Mahanagar, Nayak and Pratidwandi among others.
The master creator did not forget his little fans and made some sterling films for them.
“Goopy Gyne Bagha Byne”, “Sonar Kella” and "Hirok Rajar Deshe' which won the hearts of the adults too.
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