Tarun Majumdar
Tarun Majumder.jpg 01.jpg
Majumder at the Kolkata Book Fair, 2018
Born(1931-01-08)8 January 1931
Died4 July 2022(2022-07-04) (aged 91)
NationalityIndian
OccupationFilm director
Years active1959–2018
Awards

Tarun Majumdar (or Mazumdar, 22 September 1931 – 4 July 2022) was an Indian film director and Screenwriter who is known for his work in Bengali cinema.[1] He received four National Awards, seven BFJA Awards, five Filmfare Awards and an Anandalok Award. In 1990, the Government of India honoured him with the Padma Shri, the fourth highest civilian award.[2]

He alongside Sachin Mukherji and Dilip Mukherji made his directorial debut, under the screen name Yatrik, with the 1959 Bengali film Chaowa Pawa starring Suchitra Sen and Uttam Kumar as the leads.[3]

He received his first National Award for the 1962 Bengali film Kancher Swarga.[4] He also garnered wide critical acclamation for his directorial ventures such as Palatak (1963), Nimantran (1971), Sansar Simante (1975) and Ganadevata (1978).[5] He received a National Award, a BFJA Award and a Filmfare Award for Nimantran (1971). Ganadevata (1979) won him a National Award and a Filmfare Award.

He made blockbusters such as Balika Badhu (1967), Kuheli (1971), Shriman Prithviraj (1973), Fuleswari (1974), Dadar Kirti (1980), Bhalobasa Bhalobasa (1985) and Apan Amar Apan (1990).[6][7]

His ex-wife Sandhya Roy starred in twenty of his films and Tapas Paul in eight. Moushumi Chatterjee, Mahua Roychoudhury, Ayan Banerjee and Tapas Paul were introduced by him to the silver screen. Director/writer Sooraj Barjatya's father Rajkumar Barjatya and Rajkumar Barjatya's Friend was Legendary filmmaker Tarun Majumdar suggested the script of Maine Pyar Kiya.

Early years

Majumdar was born on 8 January 1931 in Bogra which was then part of Bengal Presidency of British India.[8][9] His father Birendranath Majumdar was a freedom fighter.[10] He studied in Post Graduation at Scottish Church College affiliated to the University of Calcutta.[11] He married fellow Bengali actress Sandhya Roy but later they divorced.[9][1]In May 2011, Majumdar resigned from the post of the advisor of Nandan (West Bengal film centre in Kolkata).

Career

His early films were credited to Yatrik (phonetically Jatrik in Bengali). Yatrik was the screenname of the trio of directors Tarun Majumdar, Sachin Mukherji, and Dilip Mukherji until 1963 after which each began to be credited separately. As Yatrik, their first venture was Chaowa Paowa (1959) starring Uttam Kumar and Suchitra Sen.[12] Yatrik made Kancher Swarga (1962) featuring Dilip Mukherjee in the lead.

In 1965, Majumdar made two films — Ektuku Basa with Soumitra Chatterjee and Alor Pipasa with Basanta Choudhury. Both the films featured Sandhya Roy as the female protagonist. In 1967, he made one of the top-grossing films of the year, Balika Badhu, an adaptation of a Bengali story written by Bimal Kar, in which a teenage Moushumi Chatterjee made her debut. He would remake it in Hindi in 1976, where it was a moderate success. His Shriman Prithviraj became a major box office success.[13]

In 1974, Majumdar directed Fuleswari, starring Sandhya Roy as the titular character. Some of the biggest names in the Bengali music industry of the time (viz. Hemanta Mukherjee, Manna Dey, Sandhya Mukherjee, Aarti Mukherjee and Anup Ghoshal) provided vocals for the film's songs. Years later, Majumdar had acknowledged Fuleswari as his favorite film. In 1975, he directed Sansar Simante, based on a screenplay by Rajen Tarafdar, which was itself adapted from a short story by Premendra Mitra. Soumitra Chatterjee portrayed Aghor, a thief. Years later, Chatterjee had admitted Aghor as one of his best roles.[14] In 1979, Majumdar's film Ganadevata became the first Bengali film to win National Film Award for Best Popular Film Providing Wholesome Entertainment.

He cast Mahua Roychoudhury as the female lead in Dadar Kirti (1980) based on a short story by Sharadindu Bandyopadhyay.[15] He proposed Debashree Roy to play the role of Bini. Roy who was struggling with her career at that time, used to be credited as Rumki Roy in her films. Majumdar did not like the name Rumki. He suggested before Rumki's mother Arati Roy that her name should be altered into Debashree and her mother agreed.[10] Ayan Banerjee was cast in the role Santu, the chirpy lover of Bini. The film marked the debut of Tapas Paul who starred as the protagonist Kedar who falls in love with Saraswati portrayed by Mahua Roychoudhury. The film became a major box office success catapulting Paul to stardom.[16][17] The film won Roychoudhury Filmfare Awards East in 1981.[18]

Majumdar cast Sandhya Roy in four consecutive films — Shahar Theke Dure (1981), Meghmukti (1982), Khelar Putul (1982) and Amar Geeti (1984). The last two films became major debacle at the box office generating the speculation in media that Sandhya Roy was no longer capable to draw mass appeal. He roped Tapas Paul and Debashree Roy in the romantic drama Bhalobasa Bhalobasa. The film gained major box office success.[19] Majumdar cast Paul in another two films, Agaman (1988) and Parashmoni (1988).

Majumdar again cast Paul alongside Prosenjit Chatterjee and Satabdi Roy in Apan Amar Apan (1990). The film was a roaring success at the box office.[20]

Cinematic sensibility

His movies were popular for their enduring characters and evergreen music. His affinity was on literature and Rabindra Sangeet.[21]Tarun Majumdar explains, " I make films based on literature. I differ with directors who in the name of experimentation make non-narrative cinema." "To me a film must draw the audience, as the medium for masses. I believe if the film is not commercially successful, it's not 'good', as the audience always go for good movies," he adds.[22] Majumdar depicted rural life with warmth and celebrated their way of living. “Majumdar told stories set in rural India with compassion and sophistication which appealed to audiences across sections" said the maker of Feluda: 50 Years of Ray’s Detective.

Recognition

West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee has expressed grief over the death of Tarun Majumdar. Nimantran has been restored and digitized by the National Film Archive of India. [23]Tarun Majumdar was the recipient of the prestigious Padma Shri Award in 1990.He got the Lifetime Achievement honor, at the West Bengal Film Journalist Association Awards in 2017.[24]

Death

Majumdar died from a heart attack at a hospital in Kolkata on 4 July 2022 at the age of 91.[9] He suffered from chest infection, kidney and heart ailments prior to his death.[9] Tarun Majumder donated his body for promotion of Medical Education to the Anatomy Department of SSKM Hospital, Kolkata.

Awards

Award Year Category Work Result Ref.
Padma Shri 1990 Won [2]
National Award 1963 Best Feature Film in Bengali Kancher Swargo Won [4]
1972 Nimantran Won
1979 Best Popular Film Providing Wholesome Entertainment Ganadevata Won [25]
1984 National Film Award for Best Scientific Film Aranya Aamar Won [26]
2004 Best Popular Film Providing Wholesome Entertainment Alo Nominated [27]
BFJA Award 1972 Best Director Nimantran Won [28]
1974 Best Screenplay Banpalashir Padabali Won [28]
1976 Best Director Sansar Simanthey Won [28]
1989 Best Lyricist Parashmoni Won [28]
2004 Most Outstanding Work of the Year Alo Won [28]
2007 Best Indian Films Bhalobasar Anek Naam Won
2017 Lifetime Achievement Won [29]
Filmfare Awards East 1967 Best Film Balika Bandhu Won [30]
1972 Best film Nimantran Won [30]
1976 Best Film Sansar Simante Won [30]
1980 Best Film Ganadevta Won [30]
2021 Lifetime achievement Won [31]
Anandalok Puraskar 2004 Best Film Alo Won
Kalakar Award [32]

Filmography

Year Title Cast Note Ref.
1959 Chaowa Pawa Uttam Kumar, Suchitra Sen, Tulsi Chakraborty Credited as Yatrik (along with Sachin Mukherji and Dilip Mukherji)
1960 Smriti Tuku Thak Suchitra Sen, Asit Baran, Chhabi Biswas
1962 Kancher Swarga Dilip Mukherjee, Anil Chatterjee [33]
1963 Palatak Anup Kumar, Sandhya Roy, Ruma Guha Thakurta
1965 Alor Pipasa Pahadi Sanyal, Basanta Choudhury, Sandhya Roy
Ektuku Basa Soumitra Chatterjee, Sandhya Roy, Bhanu Bandyopadhyay, Jahor Roy
1967 Balika Badhu Moushumi Chatterjee
1969 Rahgir Biswajit Chatterjee, Sandhya Roy, Shashikala
1971 Nimantran Sandhya Roy, Anup Kumar, Kali Banerjee
1971 Kuheli Biswajit Chatterjee, Debashree Roy, Sandhya Roy, Sumita Sanyal
1973 Shriman Prithviraj Ayan Banerjee, Mahua Roychoudhury, Utpal Dutt, Sandhya Roy
1974 Thagini Sandhya Roy, Ajitesh Bandyopadhyay, Rabi Ghosh, Chinmoy Roy
1974 Fuleswari Sandhya Roy, Samit Bhanja
1974 Jadi Jantem Uttam Kumar, Soumitra Chatterjee, Supriya Devi
1975 Sansar Simante Soumitra Chatterjee, Sandhya Roy
1976 Balika Badhu Sachin, Rajni Sharma, Kajri, Asrani, A. K. Hangal
1978 Ganadevata Soumitra Chatterjee, Sandhya Roy, Sumitra Mukherjee, Madhabi Mukherjee
1980 Dadar Kirti Tapas Paul, Mahua Roychoudhury, Sandhya Roy, Anup Kumar
1981 Shahar Theke Dure Sandhya Roy, Samit Bhanja, Bhanu Bandopadhyay
1982 Meghmukti Utpal Dutt, Biswajit Chatterjee, Sandhya Roy, Debashree Roy
1982 Khelar Putul Soumitra Chatterjee, Sandhya Roy
1984 Amar Geeti Soumitra Chatterjee, Sandhya Roy, Biswajit Chatterjee
1984 Aranya Aamar Documentary Feature film [34]
1985 Bhalobasa Bhalobasa Tapas Paul, Debashree Roy, Utpal Dutt
1986 Pathbhola Prosenjit Chatterjee, Tapas Paul, Abhishek Chatterjee, Sandhya Roy
1988 Agaman Sandhya Roy, Debashree Roy, Tapas Paul
1988 Parasmoni Tapas Paul, Satabdi Roy, Santu Mukhopadhyay
1990 Apan Aamar Apan Tapas Paul, Prosenjit Chatterjee, Satabdi Roy
1991 Path-O-Prasad Utpal Dutt, Soumitra Chatterjee, Sandhya Roy
1991 Sajani Go Sajani Mahasweta Ray, Utpal Dutt
1994 Katha Chhilo Tapas Paul, Mahasweta Ray
2003 Alo Rituparna Sengupta, Abhishek Chatterjee, Bhaswar Chattopadhyay
2005 O Amar desher Maati Bhaswar Chatterjee, Ayan Banerjee Shortfilm
2005 Bhalobasar Onek Naam Gourab Chatterjee, Megha Mukherjee, Soumitra Chatterjee, Moushumi Chatterjee, Tapas Paul
2007 Chander Bari Soham Chakraborty, Koel Mallick, Ranjit Mallick, Rituparna Sengupta
2010 Daak diye jai Paran Bandopadhyay Shortfilm
2014 Durgesh Nandini Paran Bandopadhyay , Tapas Paul, Aatish Bhattacharya Tv Series
2018 Bhalobashar Bari Silajit, Rituparna Sengupta, Arjun Chakraborty, Sreela Majumdar
2018 Adhikar Documentary Feature Film [35]
2018 Tobu Mone Rekho Khapang Tripura, Adrija, Aloy Deb Barma Short Film

References

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