Kolkata: Old is gold in Bengali cinema. Actor Soumitra Chatterjee, who turns 83 next month, stars in upcoming film Mayurakshi, which is the story of a father reconnecting with his son. Almost without interruption since 1959 when he starred in Satyajit Ray's famed Apur Sansar and then Charulata and then Abhijan - Soumitra Chatterjee has been such a consistent biggest box office draw, filmmakers are scripting films around him. In fact, in 2015, Bollywood star Amitabh Bachchan was also impressed with his work in Bela Sheshe - a film on a 70-year-old man, who suddenly decides to divorce his wife, because she was way too dependent on him. In Mayurakshi, Soumitra Chatterjee is father to an absentee son, who rediscovers their bonds.
- Amitabh Bachchan appreciated Soumitra Chatterjee's work
- Soumitra Chatterjee will next star in Mayurakshi
- Prosenjit Chatterjee will co-star Soumitra Chatterjee in the film
"I cannot tell you why I am still a box office draw," says Soumitra Chatterjee. "But there is a change of perception and attitude among young directors and they are making films in which older people like me are necessary. Even after I am gone, I am sure they will continue to make films with others."
Mayurakshi is double special because the King of Reinvention of Bengali cinema, Prosenjit Chatterjee, is co-starring with Soumitra Chatterjee. That's not the first time but it is the first time they are playing father and son on the big screen.
"Some people ask me, 'What is the story?' There is no story... the film is a number of special moments put together between father and son. I believe Mayurakshi is a very important film, definitely for me," said Prosenjit.
At a time when the country repeatedly boasts about its youthful demographics, 70 per cent people are below 35, a film on senior citizens is a refreshing change. Mayurakshi is not about the autumn of life. It is about a lust for life.