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Close Encounters: Satyajit Ray through the lens of Nemai Ghosh

02 May, 2020 | Short Features by Shantanu Ray Chaudhuri

I first met Nemai-da sometime in 2007-08, soon after I joined HarperCollins as an editor. Over the next twelve years, the relationship developed into one of great fondness for each other. Of course, I knew I was in the presence of a legend – one who had been the still photographer of none other than Satyajit Ray. From his first engagement with Ray on the sets of Goopy Byne Bagha Byne, he had captured the master at home and on the sets, at work and at play, for over twenty years, till Ray passed away in 1992. Ray had said: ‘For close on twenty-five years, Nemai Ghosh has been photographing me in action and repose – a sort of Boswell with a camera than a pen.’ 

Following are some of the striking frames of Satyajit Ray composed by Nemai Ghosh's camera.


All images have been collected and collated from the public domain. 

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About the Author

Shantanu Ray Chaudhuri is either an 'accidental' editor who strayed into publishing from a career in finance and accounts or an 'accidental' finance person who found his calling in publishing. He studied commerce and after about a decade in finance and accounts, he left it for good. He did a course in film, television and journalism from the Xavier's Institute of Mass Communication, Mumbai, after which he launched a film magazine of his own called Lights Camera Action. As executive editor at HarperCollins Publishers India, he helped launch what came to be regarded as the go-to cinema, music and culture list in Indian publishing. Books commissioned and edited by him have won the National Award for Best Book on Cinema and the MAMI (Mumbai Academy of Moving Images) Award for Best Writing on Cinema. He also commissioned and edited some of India's leading authors like Gulzar, Manu Joseph, Kiran Nagarkar, Arun Shourie and worked out co-pub arrangements with the Society for the Preservation of Satyajit Ray Archives, apart from publishing a number of first-time authors in cinema whose books went on to become best-sellers. In 2017, he was named Editor of the Year by the apex publishing body, Publishing Next. He has been a regular contributor to Anupama Chopra's online magazine Film Companion. He is also a published author, with two books to his credit: Whims – A Book of Poems (published by Writers Workshop) and Icons from Bollywood (published by Penguin Books). 

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