Basu Chatterjee

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Basu Chatterjee
Basu Chatterjee image.jpg
Basu Chatterjee
Born (1930-01-10) 10 January 1930 (age 89)
OccupationFilm director

Basu Chatterjee (Bengali: বাসু চ্যাটার্জ্জী; born 10 January 1930[1]) is an Indian film director and screenwriter. Through the 1970s and 1980s, he became associated with what came to be known as middle cinema or middle-of-the-road cinema, with filmmakers such as Hrishikesh Mukherjee and Basu Bhattacharya, whom he assisted in Teesri Kasam (1966). Like their films, his films also dealt with light-hearted stories of middle-class families often in urban settings, focusing on marital and love relationships,[2] with exceptions such as Ek Ruka Hua Faisla (1986) and Kamla Ki Maut (1989), which delved into social and moral issues. He is best known for his films Us Paar, Chhoti Si Baat (1975), Chitchor (1976), Rajnigandha (1974), Piya Ka Ghar (1972), Khatta Meetha , Chakravyuha (1978 film), Baton Baton Mein (1979), Priyatama(1977), Man Pasand, Hamari Bahu Alka, Shaukeen (1982)[3], and Chameli Ki Shaadi (1986), which was his last commercially successful movie.

Early life[edit]

Basu Chatterjee was born in Ajmer, Rajasthan, India.[1]


Chatterjee started his career as an illustrator and cartoonist with the weekly tabloid Blitz published in Bombay (now Mumbai), by Russi Karanjia. Here he worked for 18 years, before he changed career paths to filmmaking, when he assisted Basu Bhattacharya in the Raj Kapoor and Waheeda Rehman starrer Teesri Kasam (1966), which later won the National Film Award for Best Feature Film. Eventually, he made his directorial debut with Sara Akash in 1969, which won him the Filmfare Best Screenplay Award.[4]

Some of his best films to be critically acclaimed are Us Paar, Rajnigandha (1974), Chhoti Si Baat (1975), Chitchor (1976), Piya Ka Ghar (1972), Khatta Meetha , Priyatama, Chakravyuha (1978 film), Baton Baton Mein (1979) Man Pasand, Hamari Bahu Alka and Shaukeen.

Other lesser known films which were box office flops included Ratnadeep,Swami, Apne Paraye and Ek Ruka Hua Faisla.

He also directed big stars in his simple films, but in completely different never before seen roles of these actors. He directed Vinod Mehra in Us Paar with Moushmi Chatterjee, Jeetendra with Neetu Singh in Priyatama, Dev Anand with Tina Munim in Man Pasand, Rajesh Khanna with Neetu Singh in Chakravyuha (1978 film), Dharmendra with Hema Malini in Dillagi and Amitabh Bachchan in Manzil. Of them, only Chakravyuha (1978 film) with Rajesh Khanna and Manzil'with Amitabh Bachchan were not successful at box office, but were critically acclaimed at the time of their release and have developed cult classic status over the years.

He famously quoted to newspapers in 1978 on Rajesh Khanna : "If the artiste lives up to that image, I'm satisfied. In Chakravyuh, Kaka has interpreted his role beautifully. I will say this much. If the film flops, I am responsible for it. Khanna has performed very well. He gives me what performance I want very easily within an hour, whereas other actors be it Amol Palekar, Zarina, Amitabh, Vinod Mehra, Moushmi Chaterjee, Vidya Sinha, Dharmendra, Girish Karnad, Jeetendra and others generally would take around 8 hours to give the same kind of performance as I want. Khanna got more done in one hour than everybody else did in eight."

He has also directed many Bengali films such as Hothat Brishti,Hochcheta] Ki and Hothat Shei Din.

He directed the TV Series Byomkesh Bakshi and the popular Rajani (TV series) for Doordarshan both of which were successful TV serials . He was a member of the jury at the 10th Moscow International Film Festival in 1977.[5] Chatterjee is a member of the International Film And Television Club of the Asian Academy of Film & Television. He had his retrospective as part of the Kala Ghoda Art Festival Mumbai in February 2011.

His daughter Rupali Guha is also a film director. Her first Hindi film was Aamras, released in September 2009, which was a coming of age film involving four schoolgirls. Rupali's next film, the Bengali film Porichoi, with Prosenjit Chatterji, dealt with an estranged father-daughter relationship. She also produced TV serials under the Filmfarm banner. Her serials included Tumhari Disha, Rakhi Bhai Behen ka hai Pyaar, Dil se diya Vachan and Do Dil Bandhe Ek Dori Se for ZEE TV, Kashi for NDTV Imagine and Uttaran for Colors channel.



Dialogue writer[edit]




Director (TV series)[edit]

Assistant director[edit]


  1. ^ a b "Basu Chatterrjee is jury chairperson of Jaipur film fest". Retrieved 29 October 2012.
  2. ^ Bhawana Somaaya. Cinema Images And Issues. Rupa Publications. pp. 143–. ISBN 978-8129103703.
  3. ^ "Classics should be taken on, but correctly: Basu Chatterjee". The Times of India. 28 March 2013. Retrieved 28 April 2014.
  4. ^ "Director Profile: Basu Chatterjee". Cinemas of India, NFDC. Archived from the original on 26 July 2013. Retrieved 28 April 2014.
  5. ^ "10th Moscow International Film Festival (1977)". MIFF. Archived from the original on 16 January 2013. Retrieved 7 January 2013.
  6. ^ "Best Screenplay Award". Filmfare Award Official Listings, Indiatimes. Archived from the original on 29 April 2014. Retrieved 28 April 2014.
  7. ^ Asha Kasbekar (2006). Pop Culture India!: Media, Arts, And Lifestyle. ABC-CLIO. pp. 198–. ISBN 978-1-85109-636-7. Retrieved 29 October 2012.

External links[edit]