Mrinal Sen gave Bengali cinema sustained global heft from the 1950s through the 1980s. He was known to his friends and acquaintances as a shy, reserved man. Sen has been regarded as Indian cinema equivalent of a street fighter who revelled in discomfiting the bhadralok with pointed jabs at their complacency. He did that most notably, and with disquieting acuity and undisguised relish, in Ek Din Pratidin (‘And Quiet Rolls the Dawn’, 1979) and Kharij (‘The Case is Closed’), which earned him a Jury Prize at the Cannes Film Festival in 1982.

Bhuvan Shome (1969), Sen first Hindi film is generally regarded not only as the starting point of India parallel cinema movement but also as a lodestar for the succeeding generations of commercially-oriented filmmakers who turned their attention to stories of import from the hinterland and from spaces populated by India urban underclass.

Sen was born in Faridpur, East Bengal, now Bangladesh, on May 14, 1923. The director is known for his critically acclaimed films, The Calcutta trilogy (Interview, Calcutta 71, Padatik),  Mrigaya (‘The Royal Hunt’), which launched Mithun Chakraborty career, and Oka Oori Katha, a powerful Telugu adaptation of Munshi Premchand Kafan, besides Chorus, Parasuram and Aakaler Sandhane (‘In Search of Famine’).

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