Rituparno Ghosh Dead at 49

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Ace filmmaker Rituparno Ghosh, who is known for his unique films, suffered a cardiac arrest and passed away on Thursday morning at 7.30am in Kolkata at the age of 49. He was reportedly suffering from pancreatitis.

Rituparno Ghosh was first acknowledged in the 90’s when he made films in Bengali with strong and sensitive subjects. His recent endeavours were with some Bollywood biggies like Amitabh Bachchan, Ajay Devgn and Aishwarya Rai Bachchan. Ghosh won many national awards and his film Chokher Bali starring Aishwarya Rai Bachchan and Raima Sen was nominated for Golden Leopard at the Locarno Film Festival in 2003.

Rituparno Ghosh was a bold director and did not refrain from touching the otherwise sensitively discussed topic of homosexuality. He played the role of a homosexual filmmaker in Kaushik Ganguly’s ‘‘Arekti Premer Galpo’ and Sanjoy Nag’s ‘Memories in March’. He was one person who never attempted to hide his sexual preferences.

This sudden demise of the much loved filmmaker sent Twitterati into a shocked state and he has been trending on the social networking site all day long. Director Shekhar Kapur tweeted, “Every passing of a friend is a reminder to not delay your dreams. The time is not tomorrow. It is now. RIP Rituparno Ghosh.”

Ajay Devgn, who did the film ‘Raincoat’ with the director, tweeted, “Shocked and saddened to hear about Rituparno Ghosh’s death. It was great working with him in ‘Raincoat’ and his way of looking at things was so different and unique.”

Actress Bipasha Basu tweeted, “Landed in Coimbatore got heart breaking news! Ritu da has passed away! Don’t want to believe it! I have such wonderful memories with him!”. Bips made her debut in Bengali films with ‘Shob Charitro Kalponik’ directed by Ritu da, as she fondly calls him like many others in the Bengali film fraternity as well as Bollywood.

Ritu da was Raima Sen’s mentor and had given her a new phase with Chokher Bali. The actress very upset said, “It is a personal loss to me”. He also worked with a lot of other Bollywood actors like Kirron Kher in ‘Bariwali’ and Raakhee in ‘Shubho Mahurat’. For his first English film ‘The Last Lear’, he cast Amitabh Bachchan. Preity Zinta and Arjun Rampal.

This Tuesday, he tweeted about his latest film saying,” Wrapped up the shoot of Satyanewshi, a crime thriller in the molten glow of the pensive falling afternoon.”

Kolkata bid a tearful farewell to the director. West Bengal CM Mamata Banerjee was also present at the funeral along with a sizeable amount of friends from the film fraternity and his fans who were all there to pay their last respects.

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