One of the star political candidates of West Bengal’s Trinamool Congress, actor Moon Moon Sen, was once the heartthrob of millions. The fantasy of every young man and the envy of every young woman, Moon Moon (daughter of the legendary Suchitra Sen) was not just pretty, but glamorously sexy. The innumerable films that she worked in (which included those in her native Bengali language, Hindi, Marathi, Kannada and Malayalam) capitalised on her oomph. Not talent. And if there were some who were hoping that Moon Moon would turn into Suchitra II, they were absolutely wrong. Moon Moon hardly ever came close to her mother’s acting prowess.
Moon Moon was undoubtedly a great human being, highly literate with a degree from Oxford (painting lessons from the master called Jamini Roy) and fantastic taste for the fine arts. I remember spending hours with her at her South Calcutta flat talking not about cinema, but literature, poetry and human behaviour. While we were immersed in our conversations over tea, daughters Raima and Riya were up to their baby pranks, running about in their frocks. Sometimes, Moon Moon’s husband, Hubby (as he was fondly called and part of the Tripura royalty), would join us, and whose intelligence and insight matched Moon Moon’s.
But despite her brains and beauty, Moon Moon could hardly touch the top, her powers of seduction (her bikini look included) all in vain. I would hate to say this, but acting was not her strong point, a talent that Raima has inherited. But Bollywood is yet to give this young girl the right break, and I wonder why.
With campaigning for the upcoming Lok Sabha elections in full swing, Moon Moon – Trinamool leader and West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee’s hand-picked candidate – will be contesting from Bankura.
But for all the star tantrums Moon Moon was unable to throw in her grease-paint years, she seems to be at it now. Or, at least that is what the Press has been indicating.
It appears that there was a crisis of sorts a few weeks ago in Bankura which was finally resolved. The Trinamool guys had to hunt high and low to find a house for Moon Moon, a house that would be good enough for a star candidate and member of the royalty. When the house – a 60-year-old building with a quaint old-world charm -- was found, airconditioners were installed and a power-load extension was done to make sure that electricity did not trip when the lady was snoozing.
What is just brick and motor without food? And another hunt was launched to get a chef adept in Indian and Chinese cuisine. I remember Moon Moon was crazy about Chinese food – as many Bengalis have been.
Not surprising though, for Calcutta had a huge Chinese population. They ran restaurants, dry-cleaning laundries, shoe-shops, hairdressing parlours and dental clinics. However, after China attacked India in 1962, many Chinese left.)
Well, with many more days to go before polling takes place in West Bengal, I am sure we will hear more about Moon Moon in her new avatar.