The death of filmmaker Mrinal Sen on the penultimate day of the year arrived as the last bit of sad news for many cinephiles in India.
The filmmaker was the last of the legendary troika of Satyajit Ray and Ritwik Ghatak who reshaped the direction of Indian cinema and its perception among foreign viewers.
Sen was 95.
Soon, tributes began to pour in from across industry lines. Prime minister Narendra Modi and former president Pranab Mukherjee also took to social media to convey their regards.
Deeply saddened at the demise of Shri #MrinalSen.A creative genius, Mrinal Babu’s artistic canvas covered the essence of India.His recognition through various national & international awards speak volumes of his work in the field of cinema. My condolences to his family & friends.
— Pranab Mukherjee (@CitiznMukherjee) December 30, 2018
Our country is grateful to Shri Mrinal Sen for giving us some of the most memorable films.
The dexterity and sensitivity with which he made films is noteworthy. His rich work is admired across generations.
Saddened by his demise. My thoughts are with his family and admirers.
— Narendra Modi (@narendramodi) December 30, 2018
Amitabh Bachchan, who made his debut as the narrator’s voice in Mrinal Sen’s Bhuvan Shome (1969), also shared his sadness on Twitter. The actor was reportedly paid Rs300 for the job, long he became the superstar of Hindi cinema.
T 3043 – Mrinal Sen no more .. a most amiable, distinguished creative cinematic mind , contemporary of Satyajit Ray and Rithik Ghatak.. I did my first ever voice over in his film BHUVAN SHOME .. prayers and condolences 🙏🙏
— Amitabh Bachchan (@SrBachchan) December 30, 2018
Director Tigmanshu Dhulia also paid respects to the great filmmaker.
A legend has passed away who inspired so many film makers you were one of the reasons I took up film making…goodbye Mrinal Da we salute you
— Tigmanshu Dhulia (@dirtigmanshu) December 30, 2018
Actor Rajkummar Rao also paid his respects by remembering Sen’s vast repertoire.
Writing to The Telegraph newspaper, actor Naseeruddin Shah said, “He needed to believe in what he was filming. He never went into a project because someone asked him to. He is probably in a better place now than he was in the last few years, but his mark will stay indelible and his example will always be there to emulate.”
Mrinal Sen will be cremated after the director’s only son, Kunal, arrives in Kolkata on 2 January.