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Kolkata to celebrate film maker Budhadeb Dasgupta's works and his contribution to Indian cinema – GetBengal story

29 June, 2024 17:14:25
Kolkata to celebrate film maker Budhadeb Dasgupta's works and his contribution to Indian cinema – GetBengal story

The Buddhadeb Dasgupta Memorial Trust, in association with the Forum for Film Studies and Allied Arts, has organised an event in commemoration of the master filmmaker Buddhadeb Dasgupta. Celebrating Buddhadeb Dasgupta, Master of Surreal Art, will be held with a great deal of revelry on July 6, 2024, at the city’s Nandan III auditorium.

Buddhadeb Dasgupta was an Indian filmmaker and poet born in Anara, near Purulia, West Bengal, but due to his father's work, he was constantly travelling. He started his professional career as an economics professor at the Shyamsundar College of the University of Burdwan, followed by City College, Calcutta. But soon after, he became disillusioned with the socio-political reality that he lived in compared to the economic theory he was teaching and decided to shift to filmmaking. He believed filmmaking was an honest portrayal of the world, a mode of expression that rang with truth. 

Dasgupta’s first film was a 10-minute documentary called ‘The Continent of Love’. He won five National Film Awards for Best Feature Film and two for Best Direction. Although he was inspired by Satyajit Ray’s realistic genre of films, he later moved on to forms that resonated with him. His poetry also affected his style of cinema. Some of his most acclaimed and popular films are Bagh Bahadur, Tahader Katha, Charachar, and Uttara. 

The event has been organised to commemorate the life and work of auteur Buddhadeb Dasgupta, whose audiovisual imagery has inspired generations in India as well as abroad. Buddhadeb, whose demise 3 years ago left a void in Indian cinema and was lauded by film festivals across the world, including in Venice, Berlin, Locarno, and Toronto.

The programme will be inaugurated by Jaya Seal Ghosh, an accomplished actor and Bharatnatyam dancer, and Abhijit Dasgupta, the former director of Kolkata Doordarshan, in the presence of globally renowned filmmaker and Buddhadeb’s contemporary Goutam Ghose and will consist of a masterclass in cinematography, a special talk session, and a film screening of Buddhadeb Dasgupta’s most important film, Tope. 

The Magic of Moving Images: A masterclass led by ace cinematographer Asim Bose, who is a renowned cinematographer and a Professor of Practice. His career, which has spanned four decades, has been globally revered and awarded. He worked on some of Buddadeb’s masterpieces and helped create magic in films like Uttara (The Wrestlers/2000), Tope (The Bait/2016), and Urojahaj (The Flight/2018).

A special session will be led by Abhijit Basu, a music composer who also worked with Buddhadeb Dasgupta on folklore in Buddhadeb Dasgupta’s cinema. He will explore the connections music had to the story of the film and the use of folk music in his films as a form of alternative to exposition. Folk music was a substantial part of the maestro’s cinema, including in Uttara, for which he won the Golden Lion for Best Director at the Venice International Film Festival. Abhijit Basu, who designed the film’s score and whose rendition of ‘Kalo jole kuchla tole...’ in it is remembered even after a quarter century will honour the event by revealing personal stories about his experience working with the genius filmmaker and his extraordinary vision, coupled with a few anecdotes. 

The event will also include a screening of Buddhadeb Dasgupta’s penultimate and one of the most important films, Tope, giving film aficionados a chance to watch the much-discussed and acclaimed work featured at the Toronto International Film Festival, Busan International Film Festival, and BFI London on the big screen. Something that hasn’t happened in years. 

This milestone event will be attended by a host of dignitaries and artists. While the masterclass is registration only and was quickly booked, the event is open to the general public after 4pm. This celebration has been organised in honour of the cinematic maestro and his unparalleled style of storytelling. His portrayal of human emotions had a lot of depth and sincerity, and his proclivity for choosing topics that explored the human psyche and complex themes set him apart. Be a part of this celebration to memorialise the cinematic influence and the indelible mark Buddhadeb Dasgupta has left on this finicky industry that is always changing.

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