Monday, July 20, 2009

The nation remembers Uttam Kumar on his death anniversary.

The nation remembers Uttam Kumar on his death anniversary.

The nation remembers Uttam Kumar, one of the greatest superstars of Indian celluloid on his death anniversary on 24th July, 2009. He has died almost 29 years ago, yet the viewers had not forgotten his films and still his presence is felt in the life bengalies in different parts of the world.

Oscar winning director Satyajit Ray acknowledged the dynamic presence of the legendary superstar in Bengali films and made a film Nayak based on the story of Uttam Kumar. His original name was Arun Kumar Chatterji, who was a clerk in Port Commission before joining Bengali films.

When he joined films with Drishtidaan in 1948, he had to struggle to create his image as against he established heroes like Asit Boron, Bikash Roy and others. In 1952, his film Basu Paribar struck at the box-office and he overtook Bosonto Choudhury, Asit Boron and became the leading superstar of Bengali films. All the qualities of a romantic hero was possessed by him, including a standard height, good complexion, manly voice, romantic hairstyle and unique dialogue delivery. Any dress suited the legendary superstar including Punjabi, dhoti, coat, Bengali dresses, etc.

He had acted in the films of all the legendary directors of the golden age including Satyajit Ray’s Nayak, Chiriakhana, Tapan Sinha’s Jhinder Bandi, Upahaar and Jotugriha, Ajoy Kar’s Harano Sur, Saptapadi, Suno Bara Nari, etc., Agradoot’s Bipasha, Surjo Toron, etc., Agragami’s Sagarika, Shonkhobela, to name a few. Uttam Kumar acted opposite all the leading actresses of Bengali celluloid including Suchitra Sen, Arundhuti Debi, Manju Dey, Sabitri Chatterji, Supriya Choudhury, Mala Sinha, and others. His combination with Suchitra Sen had given everlasting classics and both of them still remains the most romantic pair in Indian silver screen.

Uttam Kumar’s films were based on rich literature including Tagore’s Khokababur Protyaborton, Subodh Ghosh’s Suno Bara Nari, Samaresh Bose’s Kuhak, Sorodindu Bondhopadyay’s Chiriakhana, Shankar’s Chourangi. The films were related to different types of stories including comedy stories, tragic stories, soft romantic stories, etc.

Uttam Kumar had acted in around 205 films (including bollywood films like Amanush, Anand Ashram, Choti Si Mulakat, Dooriyan, Kitaab etc., ) in a span of 35 years, and all his films had remained everlasting treasures.

Even the singers who had sung for him including Manna Dey, Shyamal Mitra, Hemanta Mukherjee, etc., agreed that they did not find any actor who was parallel to Uttam Kumar in giving lips in songs. He made the viewers feel that he only sang the songs.

Articles after articles can be devoted to Uttam Kumar who was one –man –industry in Bengali films. His films should be revisited to create motivation for making better quality films in future.

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