Tuesday, December 6

Centenary celebration: Ray’s notes on ‘Goopy Gyne Bagha Byne’ to go online

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 For the first time, Satyajit Ray’s red books of ‘Goopy Gyne Bagha Byne’ are being presented in a multilingual format online. In Ray’s centenary year, Centre for New Media (CENEMA) under TCG CREST of The Chatterjee Group is bringing to life the Kheror Khata devoted to this film. Ray’s son Sandip is the principal collaborator and adviser of the project while Mrinal Sen’s son Kunal is its technical adviser.
Sandip said, “This is the first time Kunal and I are working on a project.” Being a technologist and executing similar content-driven large projects, Kunal said, “I was excited when a friend requested me to join this complex and challenging project. Now, after seeing the ongoing work, I feel proud to be part of it in a small way.”

Over 900 pages from the two books with more than 1,500 elements are being presented along with more than 500 movie snippets, 100 audio snippets and 70 newly recorded piano renditions of the original notations by an expert pianist. Unseen detailed recorded notations penned by Ray, the sketchbook of the film drawn by him, production stills, detailed coverage of the publicity and release, and other aspects of the film are also being included.

Technologist Ayananshu Banerjee, an alumnus of IIT Kharagpur who has directed a film titled ‘Bodhon’, is heading the projects and digital initiative of TCG CREST. “This was a great opportunity for me to use my technology background with my passion for movies. Discussion with Sandip Ray began last December. We felt that doing research like this for a popular film like ‘Goopy Gyne Bagha Byne’ will be appreciated,” he said.
Attempts are being made to extensively annotate the elements on the pages, with descriptions, deciphered texts and cross-references with the script, digitized movie segments, music snippets and other information and insight from sources based on research. “The songs, background music scores and iconic scenes are also being presented by linking them to the Kheror Khata elements. People can access Kheror Khata by browsing the pages and also get references of costume, character, dialogue, storyboards, sets, production and post-production notes,” said Sabyasachi Bhattacharya, director, TCG CREST.

According to Banerjee, no attempt had earlier been made to trace the journey of the red books to understand what went on in the mind of the director when he made the film. “First, Ray wrote the story line in English with the song lyrics and notations. Some sketches of the characters and sets were also included. Some 250 pages later, he started writing the storyboards with sketches and dialogues,” Banerjee said.

The first book has all the content till the completion of the shooting. The second book is devoted to the dance of the ghosts and post-production notes. “This is a work in progress. I am glad that such a project has been conceived. On Sunday, I was shown portions of the website and suggested some changes. Once these restrictions are over, I will want some ‘Goopy Gyne Bagha Byne’ experts to take a look at the site and give their opinions,” Sandip said.

Source: Times of India

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