Television

Zee Classic lines up Bimal Roy Film Festival in February

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MUMBAI: Zee Classic is gearing up to present an ode to the pioneer of Indian cinema - Bimal Roy by celebrating noteworthy work from the golden era.

Commemorating Roy’s 50th death anniversary, Zee Classic will celebrate the life and work of the legendary filmmaker with the Bimal Roy Film Festival, which will be presented by Boman Irani.

Irani will present some of extraordinary and undiscovered facts and trivia about the filmmaker whose films, even after five decades, are still innovative and relevant today. In a five-part weekly series, the channel will showcase Roy’s awe-inspiring films every Saturday at 8 pm starting with Do Bigha Zamin on 6 February followed by Devdas on 13 February, Madhumati on 20 February, Sujata on 27 February andBandini on 5 March.

The channel has roped in State Bank of India as the co-powered by sponsor for the festival.

Satyajit Ray referred to Roy as the 'Pioneer of Indian Cinema.’ He was known to be everyone's first choice as a director and he received a lot of international accolades. Roy began his career as a cinematographer under director, P.C. Barua. His first project as a cameraman was Devdas, based on the novel of Sarat Chandra. He turned director with a Bengali film, Udayer Pathe. After shifting his base to Mumbai, he made few films but the world took notice of this gentle legend with the classic film, Do Bigha Zamin.

One of his popular films that represented India in 1960 Cannes Film Festival was Sujata. It is based on a Bengali short story written by Subodh Ghosh and dealt with the subject of untouchability starring Nutan. The actress repeated her outstanding performance in Roy’s melodious Bandini, an intense romantic drama that shed light on mental and physical rehabilitation of a female murderer. To top it all, his Madhumati was the first Indian film to be launched abroad and its opening shot was taken in front of the Karlovy Vary International Film Festival Theatre in Czechoslovakia.

Speaking about presenting the film festival on Zee Classic, Irani says, “I am honoured to be presenting the Bimal Roy Film Festival on Zee Classic. Bimal Da was an institution in himself. Decades have passed and there is still a lot more to learn from his school of filmmaking. Through this festival, we are aiming not only to appreciate but relive his passion, his outlook towards society and its reform which are still relevant today.”

Zee Entertainment Enterprises Ltd business head - Hindi movie channels Ruchir Tiwari added, “We pride in showcasing the best of the golden era to our audiences with our positioning being 'Woh Zamaana Kare Deewana'! And, any mention of the golden era is incomplete without its plinth, i.e., Bimal Roy. We wanted to commemorate the work of this legend and it all fell in place when Boman Irani agreed to be a part of this series. He is the perfect presenter for this series as he not only believes in the ideology of Zee Classic but is also a huge admirer of Bimal Roy's work. It will be interesting to see how his passion for the filmmaker translates on-screen with anecdotes and unheard facts.”

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