His Films, Their Stories

Meenakshi Mukherjee

in Filming Fiction

Published in print April 2012 | ISBN: 9780198075936
Published online September 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780199081851 | DOI:
His Films, Their Stories

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Of Satyajit Ray's thirty feature films, twenty-three were based on fiction written by well-known writers. This chapter examines Ray's film adaptations of short stories by Rabindranath Tagore and Premchand to identify a pattern in his changing relationship with the original literary texts. It looks at Ray's evolution as a director and his responses to criticisms of his early films in the pages of well-known periodicals such as Desh and Parichay. As a filmmaker who engaged in film adaptation, Ray always took liberties with the original story, claiming that these changes were inevitable, that they reflected a change in perspective due to the time lag between the published story and its film version, or that they had to be done in order to tighten and improve the narrative. This chapter presents a close reading of two of Ray's films, Charulata (1964) and Shatranj Ke Khiladi (1977).

Keywords: Satyajit Ray; films; film adaptation; Rabindranath Tagore; Premchand; Charulata; Shatranj Ke Khiladi; fiction; short stories

Chapter.  6222 words. 

Subjects: Literary Theory and Cultural Studies

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