Shoma A Chatterji's New Book "Suchitra Sen: The Legend and Enigma" Launched by Moon Moon, Riya and Raima Sen

By J P Mandal, WBRINN (

Editor's note: WBRi has the pleasure of publishing quite a few remarkable film back stories and interviews hosted by Shoma A Chatterji - a site search with Soma A Chatterji using the search bar on this web-site will produce a list of articles by her.

Sisters Raima Sen and Riya Sen
Raima and Riya Sen

Kolkata, Jan 31 (Washington Bangla Radio) - Moon Moon Sen and daughters Raima and Riya Sen launched a book written by prolific journalist, author and film critic Shoma A Chatterji on legendary actress Suchitra Sen.

An interview with Prosenjit Chatterjee - Shoma A Chatterji (WBRi)

Titled ‘Suchitra Sen: The Legend and Enigma’ unveils the two different dimensions of Suchitra Sen's persona as a legendary romantic star with an audience pull spanning over two decades, and her slow but steady metamorphosis into a powerful performing artist through films like Deep Jele Jai, Hospital, Mamta and Aandhi who could seamlessly and effortlessly essay completely different characters without the on-screen partnership of Uttam Kumar.

Suchitra Sen’s actress-turned-politician daughter Moon Moon Sen said on the occasion, "I am very happy that Shoma-di has written such a book on my mother. The book is an outcome of a lot of painstaking research by the author. Previously there were a number of  books on mom, written in both Bengali and English. Many of them had untrue elements and we, including mom, used to have a good laugh at them. But the information in this book is very authentic."

Reading Rituparno: Prosenjit Chatterjee Launches Book by Shoma A Chatterji

The book explores the wilful seclusion of the evergreen movie icon, a side of her life which always has been a mystery for people outside her family. The carefully guarded privacy of Suchitra Sen’s life could not be explored by other writers and their efforts to comment on it at were mere speculations at best. Thus Shoma Chatterji’s book on Suchitra Sen is the first complete biography of Suchitra Sen.

An interview with Aparna Sen by Shoma A Chatterji (WBRi)

Shoma A Chatterji said during the event, "I have tried my best to keep away from gossip in the book. This book is my tribute to the greatest actress the Bengali film industry has ever seen."

Shoma A Chatterji and Moon Moon Sen
Shoma A Chatterji and Moon Moon Sen

"I thank Moon Moon Sen, Riya and Raima for their support. They agreed to attend the launch as soon as I requested them and they have kept their word despite their busy schedules." said the two-time national award-winning author.

"I get to meet Raima very often at different events but Riya seldom stays at Kolkata. I had threatened Raima that I would beat her hard if she misses this event. Perhaps Raima got scared and thus she is here," joked the veteran journalist.

An interview with Srijit Mukherji by Shoma A Chatterji (WBRi)

Shoma A Chatterji also thanked other guests like directors Manoj Michigan and Sudeshna Roy who came down to the venue. She also said that she enjoys sitting with her journalists friends and listening to press conferences more than addressing them. She also conveyed heartfelt thanks for her fellow journalist friends for attending the event.

Raima Sen, Shoma A Chatterji, Moon Moon Sen, Riya Sen and Sudeshna Roy
Raima Sen, Shoma A Chatterji, Moon Moon Sen, Riya Sen and Sudeshna Roy

In an illustrious career lasting over 35 years, Soma A Chatterji has won the National Award (1990) for Best Film Critic and the Best Film Critic Award from the Bengal Film Journalists' Association (1998). Her book Parama and Other Outsiders - The Cinema of Aparna Sen won the National Award for the Best Book on Cinema, 2003. She has authored twenty published titles on cinema, gender issues and other subjects. The citation of her 1990 award succinctly describes her mastery of the film industry and writing skills: "For managing admirably to get away from routine and the beaten track. She has covered an astonishing range of subjects in the articles submitted. Whether it is an interview, a critique or analysis of an unusual subject, she has combined depth with elegance."