Over the years, Sharmila Tagore has worked with some of the most esteemed filmmakers and actors in the industry, and has carved her place in history with not just her stellar performances, but her iconic style and grace. Her formidable legacy includes a filmography that runs deep into the history of excellent Bengali and Hindi cinema. She was joined on FC Front Row, our community for film lovers, by acclaimed author, Nasreen Munni Kabir, to talk about the legendary actresses’ craft, journey, and three milestone movies. Some of the members of Front Row also received an opportunity to interact with Sharmila Tagore herself, leading to some adorable ‘fandom’ moments. Here are a few sneak peaks.
1. On Whether Working in Cinema Disrupted Her Childhood
“What it disrupted was my education. When I was offered to do Apur Sansar, the principle of my school objected. He said I’ll be a very bad influence on the other girls so choose between films and school. Naturally, I said I want to work with Satyajit Ray- Bengal had gone crazy about him, the world had gone crazy about him! So, I said no, I’m leaving.”
2. On What Wikipedia, And The World, Get Wrong About Her
“In An Evening In Paris I never wore a bikini. I don’t know how that gained currency. I think somebody just wrote something, and nobody bothered to rectify it. And everyone just thinks it is true because they haven’t seen the film because it’s an old film… the bikini thing came out in a Filmfare cover. Even now if you Google, or Wikipedia, it says I was born in 1946 in Hyderabad. Both are incorrect. I was born in 1944, in Kanpur.”
3. On The Satyajit Ray Film That Was Best Appreciated Abroad, And Why
“Particularly Days And Nights In The Forest (Aranyer Din Ratri) is very popular abroad… because this ‘alienation’ concept is very well understood by the West, they understand what it is like to be cut off from each other. These four boys are nowhere people. They can’t even appreciate a sunset without referring to a Western film. They’re so artificial, if that’s the word that I’m looking for, compared to the natural grace… which you see sometimes just passing through. So, I thought the West got it much better than we did.”
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