His contribution to the Indian cinema will be written in letters of gold: Paoli Dam, Prosenjit Chatterjee and Raima Sen remember Soumitra Chatterjee

Veteran Bengali actor Soumitra Chatterjee passed away on Sunday due to COVID-19 complications and the medical board at the Kolkata hospital where he was for over a month announced the news. He was 85. His death has left a huge void in the hearts of many. Several actors and filmmakers have spoken about the huge loss. 

Paoli Dam, who shot the upcoming film Aboho with late Soumitra Chattopadhyay in September post lockdown, said, "The first time I saw him on the big screen when Ma took me to watch 'Sonar Kella'. I would watch that film again and again because of Feluda, and I would never miss any film of the Feluda series ever. He was the face of Feluda to me as a child. I loved him in 'Hirak Rajar Deshe', too. He was not someone who would give gyan (preaching) to a junior. But when one sees an 85-year-old successful legend, despite physical exhaustion, standing and performing in front of the camera for five hours, how can one not put the best foot forward?" 

Actor-director Parambrata Chattopadhyay, who is currently in Himachal Pradesh on work, regrets not being able to join the last journey of Bangla cinema legend Soumitra Chattopadhyay. He said, "Some considered him a teacher, some a guru, and so did I... he was my own, very own 'Udayan Master'... but beyond it all, he was a dear dear friend! The last one and half years had us grow fond of each other, not as if there weren't minor disagreements now and then, like the way it happens between friends. But respect and love only grew abundantly"

Bengali superstar Prosenjit Chatterjee is crestfallen on hearing the news of Bangla cinema and theatre legend Soumitra Chattopadhyay's demise. He said, "He was a father figure to me and his contribution to Bangla, rather Indian cinema, and theatre will be written in letters of gold. I need some time to get over is"

Raima Sen will remember Soumitra Chattopadhyay as the first actor she worked with in the new normal. She said, "I just got the news (of his death). We had shot together recently, in August. We were shooting for a documentary. I had a guest appearance in the film and I remember he was fine at that time. Because of the current situation, there was social distancing the last time we worked together. That's my last memory of him. I will always remember how, after lockdown, he was the first person I shot with. It is sad to know that he had Covid and was hospitalised. There were other complications, too.It is a huge loss to the Bengali film industry because he was working very actively. He was 85 and it is very rare to see an actor of his age keep on working with the energy that he had."