Sharmila Tagore reminisces her days with Apur Sansar co star and legendary Bengali actor Soumitra Chatterjee

Sharmila Tagore and the late veteran actor Soumitra Chatterjee made their debut in 1959's Apur Sansar directed by Satyajit Ray.
Sharmila Tagore reminisces her days with Apur Sansar co star and legendary Bengali actor Soumitra Chatterjee.
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The Indian film fraternity lost another gem on Sunday as legendary Bengali actor Soumitra Chatterjee passed away in Kolkata after a difficult medal battle. Veteran and well-known actors all across India mourned the Dadasaheb Phalke awardee's demise as well as PM Narendra Modi and even President Ram Nath Kovind. One such noted personality who penned a heartfelt note for Soumitra was veteran actress Sharmila Tagore. For the unversed, Sharmila and Soumitra made their debut in 1959's Apur Sansar directed by Satyajit Ray. 

Reminiscing her first filming experience with the late actor, Sharmila said, "It was his first film and mine, too. He was exactly 10 years older than me. He wanted to be an actor and I was an accidental actress. He was 23 and I was 13 at that time. The legacy he has left behind is unparalleled. He has worked with Satyajit Ray in so many films. He was his muse."  

Speaking about Soumitra's love for acting, Sharmila added, "As an actor, he was not just into cinema. He did theatre, he acted in plays and he directed them, too. He was an exemplary reciter. The way he lent his voice to poems was beautiful. He could sing, he could paint. Lately, he was painting a lot. There was nothing he didn’t know about; sports, politics, literature - he was well-read. He was a hugely talented person and his passing is a great loss for us and the industry." 

Describing the bond they shared, Sharmila in an interview to PTI said that it's difficult to give it a name. "We could lead our parallel lives and yet have a connection, somewhere because our thoughts, depth and loyalty was the same. Soumitra knew I’d never speak ill of him. There was no questioning of what we shared, we didn’t have to prove it. If I didn’t talk to him or if he didn’t talk to me, I wouldn’t feel ‘Oh God he hasn’t wished me, he doesn’t remember my birthday.’ It was just so organic. I can’t give it any name," Sharmila revealed. 

Soumitra Chatterjee, 85, was laid to rest on Sunday, 15 November, 2020. 

Rest In Peace, Soumitra Chatterjee.   

ALSO READ: Amitabh Bachchan mourns the demise of Soumitra Chatterjee; Calls him a 'gentle soul & abundant talent'

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