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Satyajit Ray Org
Speak out on Ray, his filmmaking and his films. Share your thoughts about Satyajit Ray's World, or read what others are saying.
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since the beginning of september I have bee following a Satyajit Ray's retrospective in Berlin: up to now I already saw several movies (among them Apu's Trilogy) and I am going to see others (amoing them Charulata), and every evening is really an evening of pleasure.
I have one question: in several movies of his I have had the impression to recognize him in some small role (e.g. a beggar in Devi, one of the waiters in Nayak, a listener in Jamsaghar, etc.): am I wrong, or did actually Satyajit Ray play in very small roles as, e.g., Alfred Hitchcock or Martin Scorsese did?
Thanks for your answers, pp
Sorry to disappoint you folks, but Satyajit Ray never appeared on screen in any of his films or a fictional film by anyone else for that matter.
The king of Ghosts was played by Prasad Mukherjee in ‘Goopy Gyne Bagha Byne’ (The Adventures of Goopy and Bagha). Ray’s presence in his films was limited to narrations (voice overs) in some of the documentaries he made; Rabindranath Tagore, Sukumar Ray, Sikkim, Inner Eye, Bala, etc.
On the flip side he did operate camera, composed music, edited, wrote scripts, designed publicity posters, sets and film credits…
The King of Ghosts was indeed played by Prasad Mukherjee but the speech/song was a speeded-up version of Ray's own voice. It was recorded in 16rpm and played at 33-1/3. If you have the old LP and an old record player with 16rpm on it, play the King's chant on 16 and you'll hear Ray's own voice. I did it many times when I was a boy. I have heard that the reverse trick was done in the sequel, Heerak Rajar Deshe (The Kingdom of Diamonds), for the scene with the brain washing machine: Ray's voice was recorded in 33-1/3 and played at 16.
Apart from the documentaries, there are other films where Ray used his own voice: Pratidwandi (The Adversary), in the scene where Siddhartha is being lectured by a well-meaning old acquaintance at a tea-shop; Shatranj ke Khilari (The Chess Players), where Ray reads out a couple of sentences in English within the Hindi commentary about Wajid Ali Shah's crown; and in his very last film Agantuk (The Stranger), Ray sang the three songs sung by the mysterious visitor.
5 posts • Page 1 of 1
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