When Apur Panchali(the song of Apu) opened in Bengal on 25th April, the audiences nationwide waited in anticipation for its release around the country. And now, the wait is almost over as the tale of a lost child actor, Apur Panchali, is finally set to release across 7 cities in India, namely, Delhi, Mumbai, Bangalore, Hyderabad, Pune, Baroda and Surat, on the 16th of May.
Kaushik Ganguly’s Apur Panchali was released across Bengal to an audience eager to find out the outcome of ‘Apu’ one of the most iconic Indian child character in films. The individual around whom, the entire story of Apur Panchali revolves, is not Apu, but the child who played the character in Satyajit Ray’s 1955 epic, Pather Panchali. While both the film and the director went on to win prestigious accolades, the actor, Subir Banerjee, faded away forever from the limelight. But strangely his life too was almost akin to that of Apu, spanning through the entire Apu trilogy. The anticipation for the film was very high among Bengalis and film enthusiasts around the country since its announcement.
The film opened on 25th April in Bengal with overwhelming responses. All reviews praised the film, the director, actors and other associated individuals, whose performances are held as the best of their careers. On the opening day, the film had garnered a rating of 9.4 on IMDB, and an average rating of 8.7 in the next 3 weeks. The film also fared impressively at the box office, with the turnout in most shows housefuls, even in the afternoon shows, in spite of the unforgiving Kolkata summer.
About Apur Panchali- Apur Panchali revolves around the life of Subir Banerjee, the one who acted as Apu in Satyajit Ray’s landmark film Pather Panchali. Since then, he has faded away from the limelight, never to appear in any film again. However, his life strangely panned out a lot like his character Apu’s life had done in the Apu trilogy – the untimely loss of his father, his marriage and the tragic death of his wife, seems to be re-enactments of moments from the Apu trilogy that occurred in his life. When director Kaushik Ganguly pondered on the idea, which was introduced to him by cinematographer Sirsha Ray; he started his research on the life of a lost child actor and drew clear connections with that of Apu. The connections would comprise as the main subject of the film while the subject of child actors lost in time, along with a clear picture of the tumultuous times the country faced; was interestingly juxtaposed into the narrative by the director. Apur Panchali is not only a film that is connected to iconic names such as ‘Apu’, ‘Satyajit Ray’ and ‘Pt. Ravi Shankar’, but a film which honors also these maestros. It is a powerful film that provides a perspective on the tough life of the real Apu – Subir Banerjee, and stays fresh in the minds of the audiences long after they have left the theaters. Apur Panchali, often hailed as a must watch by many critics and audiences alike, releases across 7 cities in India on the 16th of May.