Mystery woman: how Suchitra Sen created an aura about herself

  • Madhabi Mukherjee
  • |
  • Updated: Jan 18, 2014 16:11 IST
  • Suchitra Sen

    Suchitra Sen, 82 was known for her Bengali films like Deep Jwele Jaai and Uttar Falguni and Hindi movies like Devdas, Bambai Ka Babu and ...

  • Bong Beauties: Past and present

    Suchitra Sen made her debut in films with Shesh Kothaay in 1952, but it was never released.

  • Sharey Chuattor

    Suchitra Sen's first hit was opposite Uttam Kumar in Sharey Chuattor, a film by Nirmal Dey. It was a box-office hit.

  • Suchitra Sen

    Suchitra Sen was born in Pabna in present day Pabna District of Bangladesh.

  • Suchitra Sen

    Suchitra Sen on the cover of Anand Lok magazine.

  • Suchitra Sen

    Suchitra Sen posed for an exclusive shoot with Hindustan Times. (HT Photo)

  • Suchitra Sen

    Suchitra Sen was awarded with Padma Shri in 1972 by Government of India. (HT Photo)

  • Suchitra

    Suchitra reportedly refused the Dadasaheb Phalke Award in 2005. (HT Photo)

Madhabi Mukherjee is one of the most prominent Bengali actresses of the post World War period. She is best known as Ray's most favourite heroine, Charulata, which is widely considered as her best performance. The actor pays tribute to the legendary actress.

Creating a mystique around oneself is difficult, and making it permanent is almost impossible. Very few actresses across the world have managed to keep the craze about their stardom alive even three decades after her last screen appearance.

Undoubtedly, Suchitra Sen mastered the art to perfection. She knew how to create that mystery around herself and how to carry it along with her long after she stepped out of the tinsel world.
Stardom is infectious but she managed to forego everything and lead the life of a recluse. But somehow the craze, the mystery and the enigma will never fade. Even today, we talk about her, her films and her unique sense of style.

Read: Actress Suchitra Sen dies in Kolkata hospital
When I was young, my friends and I used to watch Uttam Kumar and Suchitra Sen's films at the theatres. Later when I entered the film industry, I learnt more about her. I may not have had the opportunity to work with her, but I know she inspired actresses from every generation.

I have often saw her in film studios, sometimes we used to work at the same studio though we never worked in the same film. I saw a person holding an umbrella when she walked out of the make-up room. And another one holding it when she entered the floor.

She had her individual style, quite inimitable, and she knew how to maintain it.
Suchitra Sen might have left the film industry and retreated into a shell, but I have heard she keeps contact with her relatives, family and good friends. She even manages to visit the Ramkrishna Mission of which she is a keen disciple and leads a spiritual life.
She put an iron curtain between her life before the camera and after - effortlessly stepping away from one role as it were and entering into the other.
To the Bengali audience Uttam Kumar and Suchitra Sen represented an on-screen pair whom none can perhaps ever replace. It is difficult to find another parallel in any film industry of the country. They have become an inseparable part of the history of Bengali cinema.
(As told to Anindita Acharya)

Suchitra Sen: after the magic moments | Film industry pays tribute to screen icon Suchitra Sen | Suchitra Sen: A legend, a recluse


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Suchitra Sen: after the magic moments

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