Sharmila Tagore to Speak on Tapan Sinha and Bengali Films

Shamrila Tagore

It is the centenary year of renowned filmmaker Tapan Sinha, “an underrated and often-neglected auteur”, and it is time to revisit his films and their indelible impact. Om Books International, Blue Pencil, Kunzum Books , and New Delhi Film Foundation, have joined hands to host an enlightening evening with legendary actress Sharmila Tagore, who will be discussing the films of Tapan Sinha and the golden era of Bengali cinema with author and film critic Amitava Nag and noted editor Shantanu Ray Chaudhuri. The event will be held in Kunzum, M-Block Market, Greater Kailash-2, New Delhi on 13th March 2024 at 4 pm.

Amitava Nag’s The Cinema of Tapan Sinha, An Introduction book provides a succinct introduction to the cinema of Tapan Sinha and the significant place he holds in Bengali and, indeed, Indian cinema. With characteristic erudition, Nag explores Sinha’s deep roots in the Bengali cultural climate, mainly music and literature, and how they shaped his cinematic storytelling. Read an excerpt from a chapter in the book on Silhouette.

Sharmila Tagore worked with Tapan Sinha in the master’s award-winning film Nirjan Saikate, which will be screened on the occasion.

If one were to wonder what makes cine maestro Tapan Sinha’s films a cut above the rest, it is their sheer simplicity and innocuous manner of storytelling – a straight, uncomplicated narrative structure that slowly grows on you, excellent use of background score that create moods and an unobtrusive technique that stays carefully away from over-dramatisation, relying instead on subtle symbols and immaculate characterisation. His films not only received both critical and popular acclaim, they did well financially and went on to inspire other filmmakers.

Sinha largely drew his story ideas from celebrated literary works or real-life incidents, which is why his characters were so very identifiable. They reacted to situations as any of us would and yet went on to meet challenges in a way that set inspiring examples for others.

Amitava Nag’s books on cinema have chronicled, critiqued and curated various aspects of Bengali cinema. His trilogy on Soumitra Chatterjee comprising Beyond Apu – 20 Favourite Film Roles of Soumitra Chatterjee (HarperCollins India), Murmurs: Silent Steals with Soumitra Chatterjee (Blue Pencil) and Soumitra Chatterjee: His Life in Cinema and Beyond (Speaking Tiger) gives cine lovers rare and deep insights into the life, works and thought processes of the iconic actor. One of his latest books is The Cinema of Mrinal Sen: A Quest for the Unresolved (Blue Pencil).

Amitava Nag has authored several other books on cinema and poetry. Visit his author site here.

Sharmila Tagore on Tapan Sinha & Bengali Cinema Icons | With Amitava Nag & Shantanu Ray Chaudhuri

From the Archives: Sharmila Tagore Remembers Soumitra Chatterjee with Catherine Berge and Amitava Nag – A Blue Pencil Presentation

Read more about Tapan Sinha

Never Have I Made the Same Kind of Film: An Interview With Tapan Sinha (Part-I)

Saluting Indomitable Human Spirit: Tribute to Tapan Sinha

Modes of Storytelling: Tapan Sinha’s Kshudita Pashan (1961)