Soumitra Chatterjee

About Soumitra Chatterjee

Who is it?: Actor
Birth Day: January 19, 1935
Occupation: Actor, Recitator, Poet, Painter, Thespian
Years active: 1959 – present
Height: 1.80 m (5 ft 11 in)
Spouse(s): Deepa Chatterjee (1960-present)

Soumitra Chatterjee

Soumitra Chatterjee was born on January 19, 1935, is Actor. Soumitra Chatterjee was born on January 19, 1935 in Krishnanagar, Bengal Presidency, British India as Soumitra Chattapadhaya. He is an actor, known for Apur Sansar (1959), Aranyer Din Ratri (1970) and Podokkhep (2006). He is married to Deepa Chatterjee.
Soumitra Chatterjee is a member of Actor

Does Soumitra Chatterjee Dead or Alive?

As per our current Database, Soumitra Chatterjee is still alive (as per Wikipedia, Last update: May 10, 2020).

🎂 Soumitra Chatterjee - Age, Bio, Faces and Birthday

Currently, Soumitra Chatterjee is 86 years, 4 months and 26 days old. Soumitra Chatterjee will celebrate 87rd birthday on a Wednesday 19th of January 2022. Below we countdown to Soumitra Chatterjee upcoming birthday.

Days
Hours
Minutes
Seconds
Popular As Soumitra Chatterjee
Occupation Actor
Age 85 years old
Zodiac Sign Aquarius
Born January 19, 1935 ()
Birthday January 19
Town/City
Nationality

🌙 Zodiac

Soumitra Chatterjee’s zodiac sign is Aquarius. According to astrologers, the presence of Aries always marks the beginning of something energetic and turbulent. They are continuously looking for dynamic, speed and competition, always being the first in everything - from work to social gatherings. Thanks to its ruling planet Mars and the fact it belongs to the element of Fire (just like Leo and Sagittarius), Aries is one of the most active zodiac signs. It is in their nature to take action, sometimes before they think about it well.

🌙 Chinese Zodiac Signs

Soumitra Chatterjee was born in the Year of the Pig. Those born under the Chinese Zodiac sign of the Pig are extremely nice, good-mannered and tasteful. They’re perfectionists who enjoy finer things but are not perceived as snobs. They enjoy helping others and are good companions until someone close crosses them, then look out! They’re intelligent, always seeking more knowledge, and exclusive. Compatible with Rabbit or Goat.

Some Soumitra Chatterjee images

Awards and nominations:

Soumitra has received the 'Officier des Arts et Metiers', the highest award for arts given by the French government, and a Lifetime Achievement Award from Italy. He turned down the honorary Padma Shri award from the Indian government in the 1970s; in 2004, he accepted the prestigious Padma Bhushan award from the President of India. He has been the subject of a full-length documentary named Gaach by French film director Catherine Berge. In 1998, he was awarded the Sangeet Natak Akademi Award given by the Sangeet Natak Akademi, India's National Academy of Music, Dance & Drama.

Incidentally, besides getting 8 times BFJA - Best Actor Awards and international recognition for his acting prowess, Chatterjee never won a National Film Award for acting in the early part of his career, which established his reputation as an actor, working with directors like Satyajit Ray, Tapan Sinha or Mirinal. Thus, over the years, he has been vocal about his feelings of disappointment and alleging bias in the National Film Awards committee's towards awarding popular and mainstream cinema. Thus, in a gesture of protest against, he turned down the 2001 Special Jury Award for Dekha directed by Goutam Ghose. Later in an interview he stated "..the National Film Awards, overlooked my performances in several powerful roles...When I did Kony, Shashi Kapoor was adjudged the best actor. Anil Kapoor was feted (Best Actor) for Pukar while Dekha was awarded a 'consolation' prize".

However, after receiving the Padma Bhushan, the third highest civilian honour given by Government of India in 2004, he changed his viewpoint towards awards, and stated "Now (after Padma Bhushan) I feel I don't have the right to hurt my viewers by rejecting an award." A few years later, on 9 June 2008, he was awarded the 2007 National Film Award for Best Actor for Podokkhep (Footsteps) (2006), which he accepted though stating "after decades of acting, I do not attach too much value to it".
In 2010, he won Best Supporting Actor at 54th Asia-Pacific Film Festival for his role in Angshumaner Chhobi (2009).

In 2012, he was awarded the Dadasaheb Phalke Award, India's highest award in cinema given annually by the Government of India for lifetime contribution to Indian cinema. In 2014, he received the introductory Filmfare Awards East for Best Male Actor (Critics) for his role in Rupkatha Noy. & also he won Filmfare Lifetime Achievement Award – South (1994) Actor Soumitra Chatterjee, 82, will be honoured with France’s highest civilian award, Legion of Honor. The award will be presented to the Kolkata-based actor by the Ambassador of France to India Alexandre Ziegler. Talking about the honour, Chatterjee said, “At this age, awards do not hold a great attraction. But I should say this award is slightly special as it comes from a country that is known for its cultural richness and artistic excellence.

Biography/Timeline

1935

Soumitra was born in Mirjapur Street, a locality in Calcutta of West Bengal, in 1935. The first ten years of his early life past in Krishnanagar in the district of Nadia in West Bengal, the town under the influence of Playwright Dwijendralal Ray, also from Krishnanagar, had a flourishing theatre culture, with numerous small theatre groups. His grandfather was the President of one such group, while his father though Lawyer by profession, later a government worker and also worked as an amateur actor. He started acting in school plays. Encouraged by the praise he received for his acting, gradually his interest in theatre grew with passing years, thus in late school years, he was taking acting seriously. He was a very close friend of famous theatre personality, Mrityunjay Sil who is often regarded as the person due to which Soumitra is a star.

1956

Subsequently, he started his career working in All India Radio as an announcer, while he was still there he started pursuing a career in films. He came in touch with Ray during the casting for Aparajito (1956), who was looking for new faces. Ray thought he had the right look, however found him, age 20, and just out of college, too old for the role of adolescent Apu. Ray remembered him and offered him the role of adult Apu two years later. Meanwhile, he was rejected in his screen test for Bengali film, Nilachale Mahaprabhu (1957) directed by Kartik Chattopadhyay.

1958

He replaced Mrityunjay Sil as the lead Artist in 1958. Mrityunjay Sil was at the peak of his theatre career at that time. But due to personal issues he suggested his friend, Soumitra's name. Mrityunjay Sil is often credited to be one of the few people to have helped Soumitra. But he soon left his job.

1959

Soumitra and his family moved to Howrah where he studied in the Howrah Zilla School and Calcutta during his early years. Soumitra graduated from the City College, Kolkata with honours in Bengali literature, as a graduating student of the University of Calcutta. He has lived for a number of years in Calcutta in Satyajit Ray's old apartment 3-lake temple road. He studied for his M.A. in Bengali from the University of Calcutta. While still a student, he learnt acting under noted actor-director of Bengali theatre Ahindra Choudhury. However a turning point came when in the final year of college he saw a play by Sisir Bhaduri, theatre Director and the doyen of Bengali theatre. The play not only set a standard for acting for him, but also help makeup his mind to become an actor. He managed to meet Bhaduri, through his friend's mother, Actress Shefalika Putul. Though, he met Bhaduri, towards the end of his career, when his theatre had closed, nevertheless over the next three years, till Bhaduri's death in 1959, Chatterjee made him a mentor, and learnt the craft of acting through their regular interactions. He even appeared in a small role in one of Bhaduri's productions.

1961

Soumitra had approached Satyajit Ray to suggest a name for a little magazine founded by Soumitra and Nirmalya Acharya in 1961. Satyajit Ray had named the magazine Ekkhon (Now), he designed the inaugural cover page and illustrated the cover pages regularly even after Soumitra had stopped editing the magazine. Nirmalya continued editing the magazine, and several of Ray's scripts were published in the magazine.

1965

Besides working with Ray, Soumitra excelled in collaborations with other well-known Bengali Directors such as Mrinal Sen and Tapan Sinha. He earned critical acclaim for his role of an impostor in Mrinal Sen's Akash Kusum (1965). He was equally confident in playing the swashbuckling horse-riding villain in Tapan Sinha's Jhinder Bandi (1961) giving the legendary Uttam Kumar a tough challenge. In Teen Bhubaner Pare (1969), he again shared the screen with the Tanuja, and his flamboyant and peppy way of romance. Besides films, Chatterjee has continued acting in Kolkata-based Bengali theatre, and even published over 12 poetry books.

1970

Soumitra has received the 'Officier des Arts et Metiers', the highest award for arts given by the French government, and a Lifetime Achievement Award from Italy. He turned down the honorary Padma Shri award from the Indian government in the 1970s; in 2004, he accepted the prestigious Padma Bhushan award from the President of India. He has been the subject of a full-length documentary named Gaach by French film Director Catherine Berge. In 1998, he was awarded the Sangeet Natak Akademi Award given by the Sangeet Natak Akademi, India's National Academy of Music, Dance & Drama.

1978

After a two-decade long busy career as a leading man of Bengali cinema, he returned to theatre in 1978, with his production Naam Jiban, staged at Biswarupa Theatre in Kolkata. This led to other plays like Rajkumar (1982), Phera (1987), Nilkantha (1988), Ghatak Biday (1990) and Nyaymurti (1996), beside notable plays like Tiktiki (1995), an adaptation of Sleuth and Homapakhi (2006). Besides acting, he has written and directed several plays, translated a few and also branched out to poetry reading in recent decades.

1980

Entering the 1980s and 1990s, he started working with contemporary Directors, like Goutam Ghose, Aparna Sen, Anjan Das and Rituparno Ghosh, and even acted on television. In 1986, he played the role of a swimming coach in film Kony (1986) directed by Saroj Dey, who was part of the film collective Agragami. The film is about a young girl from a slum, who wants to become a Swimmer. At the 32nd National Film Awards, the film won the National Film Award for Best Popular Film Providing Wholesome Entertainment . Later in a 2012 interview, he called Kony one of the best films of his career. He even recalled using film's catch-phrase "Fight-Koni-fight" in hard times, as a chant to himself to lift his "aging spirits". The phrase had become popular with middle-class Bengalis at the time.

1984

Ghare Baire (1984), an adaptation of Rabindranath Tagore's novel of the same name and one of Ray's major ventures of the 1980s, featured Chatterjee in a leading role in the character of a radical revolutionary in a love triangle with his friend's wife. These roles showcased Chatterjee's versatility in playing diverse characters, especially in an urban setting. In Shakha Proshakha (1990), Ray's second last film, Chatterjee turns out a moving performance in the role of a mentally handicapped son of an aging patriarch on his deathbed and the only source of his father's solace, as his siblings squabble.

2001

Incidentally, besides getting 8 times BFJA - Best Actor Awards and international recognition for his acting prowess, Chatterjee never won a National Film Award for acting in the early part of his career, which established his reputation as an actor, working with Directors like Satyajit Ray, Tapan Sinha or Mirinal. Thus, over the years, he has been vocal about his feelings of disappointment and alleging bias in the National Film Awards committee's towards awarding popular and mainstream cinema. Thus, in a gesture of protest against, he turned down the 2001 Special Jury Award for Dekha directed by Goutam Ghose. Later in an interview he stated "..the National Film Awards, overlooked my performances in several powerful roles...When I did Kony, Shashi Kapoor was adjudged the best actor. Anil Kapoor was feted (Best Actor) for Pukar while Dekha was awarded a 'consolation' prize".

2004

He was awarded the Padma Bhushan by the Government of India in 2004. In 2012, he received the Dadasaheb Phalke Award, India's highest award in cinema given by the government of India for lifetime achievement. He has won two National Film Awards as an actor, and as an actor in Bengali theatre, he received the Sangeet Natak Akademi Award in 1998, given by the Sangeet Natak Akademi, India's National Academy of Music, Dance and Drama. In 2013, IBN LIVE named him as one of "The men who changed the face of the Indian Cinema". In 2014, he received the introductory Filmfare Awards East for Best Male Actor (Critics) for his role in Rupkatha Noy. He won 7 Filmfare Awards.

2008

However, after receiving the Padma Bhushan, the third highest civilian honour given by Government of India in 2004, he changed his viewpoint towards awards, and stated "Now (after Padma Bhushan) I feel I don't have the right to hurt my viewers by rejecting an award." A few years later, on 9 June 2008, he was awarded the 2007 National Film Award for Best Actor for Podokkhep (Footsteps) (2006), which he accepted though stating "after decades of acting, I do not attach too much value to it". In 2010, he won Best Supporting Actor at 54th Asia-Pacific Film Festival for his role in Angshumaner Chhobi (2009).

2010

Since November 2010, he has been regularly performing in the title role of the play Raja Lear directed by Suman Mukhopadhyay, a play based on King Lear by William Shakespeare. Soumitra has received widespread critical and popular accolades for his acting in the play.

2012

In 2012, he was awarded the Dadasaheb Phalke Award, India's highest award in cinema given annually by the Government of India for lifetime contribution to Indian cinema. In 2014, he received the introductory Filmfare Awards East for Best Male Actor (Critics) for his role in Rupkatha Noy. & also he won Filmfare Lifetime Achievement Award – South (1994) Actor Soumitra Chatterjee, 82, will be honoured with France’s highest civilian award, Legion of Honor. The award will be presented to the Kolkata-based actor by the Ambassador of France to India Alex Andre Ziegler. Talking about the honour, Chatterjee said, “At this age, awards do not hold a great attraction. But I should say this award is slightly special as it comes from a country that is known for its cultural richness and artistic excellence.

2014

Soumitra would eventually collaborate with Ray on fourteen films. His centrality to Ray's work is akin to other key collaborations in the history of cinema — Mifune and Kurosawa, Mastroianni and Fellini, De Niro and Scorsese, DiCaprio and Scorsese, Max von Sydow and Ingmar Bergman, Jerzy Stuhr and Kieślowski. After Apur Sansar, he also worked with Sharmila Tagore in a number of Ray films, apart from working with leading star actor of the period, Uttam Kumar with whom he has often been compared, in eight films.

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