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25/5/2020MONDAYIN CONVERSATION WITH HICHKI - Creative geniuses
From "The Gladiators" section:

Nabendu Ghosh
Our featured gladiator
The unstoppable novelist, screenplay writer,
director, producer, dancer, lecturer... Salute!

(March 27, 1917 –December 15, 2007)

Actively writing even at ninety (above pic), this literary genius was a prominent progressive writer in the Bengali literary circle, remembered for his brilliant literary works including Ajab Nagarer Kahini, Jeeboner Shaad, Bichitra Ek Prem Gatha and Dak Diye Jai, a novel set against the Quit India Movement (that also cost him his government job). His writing covers historically tumultuous events… from famine to riots to partition, as well as love. A literary and cultural treasure for future generations, his works reflect his creativity, along with a deep understanding of the intricacies of the diversity of people and their different emotions.

Also a distinguished dancer of Uday Shankar's style, Ghosh won several awards during 1939 and 1945. After Bengal Partition in 1947, when literature and cinema suffered a slow-down in Bengal, Ghosh left for “Bombay Talkies” and collaborated with acclaimed film director Bimal Roy as a screenplay writer for classics such as Devdas, Sujata and Bandini. Ghosh penned around 60 scripts through his career, covering a fascinating and diverse range of issues that included films such as Basu Bhattacharya’s Teesri Kasam, Guru Dutt’s Aar Paar and Hrishikesh Mukerjee’s Abhimaan.

“His scripts were not only taut but fluid and he never believed in complicating simple issues. Nabendu Da was firm on his decisions, once his script was complete. He understood that the backbone of any good film was its screenplay and dialogues. He never indulged in unnecessary gimmickry or stylization in his writing and stuck to a literary piece as far as possible.”
Dharmendra, a celebrated Hindi film actor fondly remembers Nabendu Da.

Relentless in his creative journey, at 77 years of age he won the National Award for the Best First Film of a Director for his directorial debut- Trishangni: “For excellent exploration of a complex philosophical theme for the first time in Indian cinema”. Considered bold and controversial for its time of release as it dared to look at Buddhism from a rather radical, even iconoclastic viewpoint, without really seeming to do so.

He was also a popular actor on stage and taught a Direction Course to students at FTII, Pune as guest lecturer from 1967 -1994.

"Baba’s creative energy and artistic inspiration along with his childlike enthusiasm did not let him rest. At 90 he had started working on a fascinating book called 'Jonek Bahurupi’ or 'A Certain Bahurupi' about folk performers of Bengal who portray different characters from gods to demons, rogues to beggars, animals and birds. The book, which would have been a fascinating peek into the Bahurupi’s world of tradition and a remarkable portrayal of contemporary times through age old mythology... sadly remains unfinished."
Daughter, Ratnottama Sengupta

Photo caption in N Ghosh's own words: "In 1966, at the Sarat Centenary Celebrations in Mumbai. Nabendu Ghosh is speaking at the closing ceremony. Seated from left to right are - Hiten Chowdhury (elder brother of Sankho Chowdhury), actress Dina Pathak, director Basu Bhattacharya, an actress, Kamini Kaushal , renowned director Nitin Bose, and legendary actor Dilip Kumar."

N Ghosh (right) with Narayan Ganguly (left), the renowned Bengali litterateur,
creator of Tenida series

Photo credits: Ratnottama Sengupta - Arts Editor, The Times of India

Guest writer: Debasmita Moulick - a film enthusiast, an aesthete and a consulting editor in energy media, based in Kolkata and Moscow. She can be reached at moulickd@gmail.com

Gladiators / Geniuses and the mind / Creative geniuses / www.hichki.com

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