Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Tapen Chatterji had been remembered on expiry.

Tapen Chatterji had been remembered on expiry.

Satyajit Ray’s grand creation Gupi Gayeen died on 25th May, 2010. Tapen Chatterji suffered a massive heart attack and died in Kolkata on 25th May, 2010.

He was an automobile engineer. He worked in Bikaner in Rajasthan for some time. Poet Subhas Mukherjee took Tapen Chatterji to the office of Sandesh Publication House. Sandesh was edited by Satyajit Ray at that point of time.

Satyajit Ray did cast Tapen Chatterji in the film Gupi Gayeen Bagha Bayeen released in 1963. The story of the film was written by Ray’s grandfather Upendra Kishore Ray Choudhury. The rest was history. Tapen Chatterji gave lips in leading songs in the film sung by Anup Ghoshal, namely “bhuter raja dilo bar”, “maharaja tomare selam”, “tham theme thak”, “ek je chilo raja”, “dekhore nayan mele”, to name a few.

Gupi Gayeen won national and international awards under different categories. Satyajit Ray again did cast him again in the film Hirak Rajar Deshe in 1980. Again he played the role of Gupi Gayeen along with Robi Ghosh playing the role of Bagha Bayeen. In Gupi Gayeen Bagha Bayeen, Tapen Chatterji stopped Jahar Ray from attacking Shundi kingdom and killing Santosh Dutta. In Hirak Rajar Deshe he brought the end of the evil regime of Utpal Dutta who played the role of Hiraker Raja.

But apart from Satyajit Ray’s Gupi Bhagha series, he did get chance only in very few landmark films. One of them included Arobindo Mukherjee’s film Dhanni Meye. Uttam Kumar played the lead role in the blockbuster released in 1971. Tapen Chatterji played the role of the brother in law of Uttam Kumar and gave able lips in Manna Dey’s song “sab khelar sera bangalir tumi football”.

Tapen Chatterji’s other notable films included Sadhu Judhisthirer karcha, Shriman Prithviraj, etc. But viewers remember the tall actor in the immortal role of Gupi Gayeen. Children all across the country mourn the death of their larger than life character gupi gayeen, who had come out of child literature and made the character immortal. Tapen Chatterji’s soul should rest in peace.

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