Monday, May 20, 2024

Story of comedian Asit Sen, who made people laugh by speaking slow dialogues: Became a star in films by copying the style of a servant, learned acting by lying to his family members


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Today is the 107th birth anniversary of Asit Sen, famous for acting and comedy in black and white films. Asit Sen had his own identity. His specialty was to deliver dialogues in a very low and slow voice. Because of this style, he became a superhit in his role in 'Bees Saal Baad'.

Asit Sen worked in about 250 Bengali and Hindi films. The story of Asit Sen's entry into films is also interesting. When he reached Bombay, he had to work as a cameraman with famous filmmaker Bimal Roy. Actually, Asit Sen was very fond of photography.

He also had a photo studio in Gorakhpur, Uttar Pradesh. He went to Kolkata in the year 1949-50 in connection with photography. There he joined New Theatre. There he met Bimal Roy while acting in a drama.

Seeing his comic timing and speaking style, Bimal Roy gave him the role of a professor in the film 'Sujata'. After this Asit started being recognized as a great comedian.

Asit Sen with Kishore Kumar in the 1968 film 'Do Duni Chaar'.

Asit Sen with Kishore Kumar in the 1968 film 'Do Duni Chaar'.

On the occasion of his birth anniversary, let's look at interesting stories from Asit Sen's life…

Lied to family, went to Calcutta to work in films

Asit Sen was born on 13 May 1917 in a Bengali family of Gorakhpur. In connection with employment, his family came from Burdwan district of West Bengal and settled in Gorakhpur, Uttar Pradesh. Asit Sen's father sometimes ran a radio and gramophone shop and sometimes an electrical goods shop.

Asit Sen did not like sitting at the shop, but he was very fond of photography and used to go to many functions and take photographs. When Asit passed 10th, his mother wanted him to get married, but Asit wanted something else.

He wanted to go to New Theaters in Calcutta and learn filmmaking from director Nitin Bose. Asit was not able to understand how to go to Calcutta. Then he went there in connection with a marriage. After going to Calcutta, Asit made an excuse in front of his family that he was pursuing B.Sc. while staying in Calcutta. Want to study Com.

Photography brought Gorakhpur back

After coming to Calcutta, Asit also tried his hand in theater and worked in some plays. Gradually he started getting praise for his work, but then Asit had to go back to Gorakhpur.

Actually, Asit's father was well acquainted with the Police Commissioner of Gorakhpur. When he was transferred from Gorakhpur, a big farewell ceremony was organized in the city.

Asit Sen was given the responsibility of photography in this function and was called back to Gorakhpur from Calcutta. Everyone liked the pictures taken by Asit very much.

Asit Sen also became so happy with his praise that he opened Sen Photo Studio in Gorakhpur in 1932. His photo studio was doing well, but then World War 2 broke out. At that time, all the photography equipment in India came from abroad. This could not happen due to war and Sen's photo studio was in trouble.

Mother-grandmother passed away, Asit Sen left his job

When the photo studio was on the verge of closure, Asit Sen started worrying about his livelihood. In this connection, he reached Bombay where he got the job of still photography in a film company. Asit got engrossed in his new work, but then he got a telegram from home that his mother was ill, come home.

Asit immediately went to Gorakhpur. News was received about mother's illness, but Asit's grandmother passed away before her. Sometime after his grandmother's death, Asit's mother also passed away. Asit was devastated by two deaths in the house within three months. Neither was he able to stay in Gorakhpur nor was he able to muster the courage to go to Bombay and work again.

Started film career as Bimal Roy's assistant

One day Asit made up his mind and left everything behind and reached Calcutta again. What happened to Asit Sen after going to Calcutta, he himself told in an interview given in 1960, 'There I met my friend Krishnakant who was working with Kanan Bala in the film 'Banphool'. Krishnakant introduced me to actress Sumitra Devi and her husband Dev Mukherjee.

This acquaintance with both of them became very useful to me in future. It was thanks to him that I met filmmaker Bimal Roy, who by then had made his first Bengali film 'Udayer Pathe' and was now preparing to make it in Hindi.

He was looking for an assistant who was an expert in Hindi, so he hired me. He had hired assistants before me, so I was the third assistant, but gradually due to my work, I became his first assistant. Along with this, I also started doing small jobs in some films.

My first film was 'Humrahi' in which I played a very small role. From 1945 to 1949, Asit Sen was associated with New Theatres. In the early 50's, Bimal Roy decided to go to Bombay and took Asit Sen as a part of his team.

Bimal Roy was a veteran filmmaker of the 50s.  He made films like Madhumati, Bandini, Sujata, Devdas, Do Bigha Zameen.

Bimal Roy was a veteran filmmaker of the 50s. He made films like Madhumati, Bandini, Sujata, Devdas, Do Bigha Zameen.

Bimal Roy made director

Asit Sen remained Bimal Da's assistant till 1956. He was given credit as a production executive in 'Do Bigha Zameen' released in 1953, 'Parineeta' released in 1953, 'Biraj Bahu' released in 1954 and as an assistant director in the film 'Devdas' released in 1955. In 1956, Bimal Da gave Asit Sen a chance to direct the film 'Parivar' under the banner of his own film company Bimal Roy Productions.

Soon after this, in 1957, Asit Sen made the film 'Aparaadhi Kaun?' Directed. After directing these two films, Asit wanted to turn to acting again.

Unique style of speaking dialogues made him famous

He signed the film Chhota Bhai. In this film, Asit had to do comedy in the role of a stupid servant. They had no idea what to do. Then he remembered that in his childhood, a servant in his house used to speak in a very slow tempo – 'Ka ho babu.. ka karat hav…' Asit Sen copied the same style. This trick worked and Asit Sen got a line of comedy roles.

Because of his style of speaking dialogues at a very slow speed, directors started demanding him to speak dialogues in the same manner in every film. Bimal Roy himself was impressed by Asit's dialogue delivery and gave him a role in the film Sujata. Asit Sen started to fear being typed in the same style, but the 1961 film 'Bees Saal Baad' took him to great heights because of this style.

In this film he played the role of Gopichand detective. His character of detective Gopichand became so popular that it was copied again and again. What's more, in 1982, filmmaker Naresh Kumar, brother of actor Rajendra Kumar, made a film 'Gopichand Jasoos'.

Asit Sen has worked in approximately 250 films.

Asit Sen has worked in approximately 250 films.

Worked in 250 films

After this, 'Chand Aur Suraj' in 1963, 'Bhoot Bangla' in 1965, 'Naunihaal' in 1967, 'Brahmachari' in 1968, Yakin and 'Aradhana' in '1969, 'Pyaar Ka Mausam', 'Purab and Paschim', 'Dushman', 'Majhli Didi', 'Buddha Mil Gaya', 'Mera Gaon Mera Desh' in 1971, 'Anand', 'Door Ka Rahi', 'Amar Prem', 'Bombay to Goa' in 1972, Played side roles in 250 films including 'Balika Vadhu', 'Bajrang Bali' in 1976.

Shocked by wife's death, Asit Sen passes away

Asit Sen was married to Mukul who was a resident of Calcutta. Both of them had three children. Two sons Abhijeet and Sujit Sen and one daughter Rupa. Abhijit Sen was an assistant to famous directors like Dulal Guha and then working in Bengali films.

Sujit Sen is a cameraman. In 1993, Asit's wife Mukul Sen fell seriously ill, after which she died. Asit was so devastated by his wife's death that a few months later, on 18 September 1993, he too passed away from this world.

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