Victor Banerjee

Victor Banerjee
Date of Birth: 14th October, 1946

Victor Banerjee is one of the extremely famous and internationally acclaimed actors of Bengali Silver screen for his stong voice and appearence on the screen. Besides working as an actor in Bengali, Hindi and English films, he has also directed films and  worked for prominent directors like Jerry London, Shyam Benegal, Satyajit Ray, Roman Polanski, James Ivory and David Lean. He was the descendant of Womesh Chandra Banerjee, a leading intellectual of his time and president of Indian National Congress (1885). Victor did his schooling from Shillong’s St. Edmunds School. He received his Bachelors in English from St Xaviers’ College of Kolkata. He has worked in a Multinational Company for five years and later started travel agency business. He has also played in Senior Division Hockey League and Second Division Football League. He got married to Maya Banerjee and has two daughters.

He got his first break in Satyajit Ray’s “Satranj Ki Khiladi” (1977). Satranj Ki Khiladi was a superb film by Satyajit Ray which helped Victor to come into limelight. His first Bengali movie was “Dui Prithivi” directed by Pijush Basu in 1980. Satyajit Ray’s memorable movie Ghare Baire(1984) earned him high recognition as an actor in Bengal . Although Satyajit Ray wanted him to do the role of Sandip. But he was determined to play Nikhilesh’s character and took it as a challenge which was highly rewarded. In 1984, he acted as Dr. Aziz Ahmed in David Lean’s adaptation of the book A Passage to India, bringing him to the attention of Western audiences. Victor was nominated for BAFTA award for this role in 1986. He won two other awards for this role: Evening Standard British Film Award and NBR Award (National Board Review, USA).  He acted in Merchant Ivory Productions Hullabaloo Over Georgie and Bonnie’s Pictures.

Though in recent years he has largely been involved with Bollywood, he is also affiliated with the Bengali film industry. He also plays ‘character actor’ roles from time to time in the British cinema. He was also cast in the role of Jesus by director Stephen Pimlott in the 1988 production of the York Mystery Plays.  “A passage to India “ (1984) also gave him enormous fame. Apart from that , he has worked in many Hindi movies like “Jogger’s park” (2003), My brother Nikhil (2005), Ta Ra Rum Pum (2007), Apne (2007).

His performance in “ Bow barracks forever’is also quite noteworthy. He has also directed a movie named ‘August requim’in English and “Agun”in Bengali. He has traveled abroad extensively and has worked in many British plays. He received American Goldie Award for the documentary” Where no journey end”. The actor also received National award for his photography in “ The splendours of Garowal and Rupkundu”. His role in Ghare Baire gave him the Best Actor award by B.F.J.A. He has been vocal from time to time about human rights and labour issues, and campaigned for the formation of Uttarakhand and rights of Garwali farmers. He joined Indian politics and stood for election as a candidate of Bharatiya Janata Party. In 1985, he formed Cine Co Artist Society for extra artists.

Victor Banerjee Videos from Bengali Movies
1. Victor Banerjee with Moonmoon Sen
2. Bolona Tumi More – Song from the movie Aagun (1988)
3. KI Kore Asbe Din – Song from the movie Aagun (1988)
[playlist id=8]

When not in Calcutta, he is to be found in the hill station of Landour in the Lower Western Himalaya in northern India.

Filmography:

Actor
  1. Agreement – Ek Daastaan (Unreleased) 2009
  2. Amavas (Unreleased) 2009
  3. Chaurahen – Crossroads (Unreleased) 2009
  4. Chowrasta (Unreleased) 2009
  5. Aparadhi (Unreleased) 2008
  6. Sarkar Raj 2008
  7. Tahaan 2008
  8. Aloy Phera 2007
  9. Apne 2007
  10. Bandhu 2007
  11. Bow Barracks Forever 2007
  12. Kalishankar 2007
  13. Ta Ra Rum Pum 2007
  14. The Bong Connection 2007
  15. Ho Sakta Hai 2006
  16. Uttarayan 2006
  17. Home Delivery 2005
  18. My Brother Nikhil 2005
  19. Parinam 2005
  20. Aabar Asibo Phire 2004
  21. Bandhan 2004
  22. Bhoot 2003
  23. Jogger`s Park 2003
  24. Path 2003
  25. Chandramollika 2002
  26. Deba 2002
  27. Ferari Fouj 2002
  28. Antarghat 2001
  29. Banshadhar 2001
  30. Dadathakur 2001
  31. Mastermasai 2001
  32. Aamader Sansar 2000
  33. Bhalobasi Tomake 2000
  34. Satyi Ei To Jibon 2000
  35. Chena Achena 1999
  36. Manush Kano Beiman 1999
  37. Rajdanda 1999
  38. Tumi Ele Tai 1999
  39. Aamar Maa 1998
  40. Moner Moton Mon 1998
  41. Shesh Kartabya 1998
  42. Danab 1997
  43. Lathi 1996
  44. Mahan 1996
  45. Mahaprithibi 1991
  46. Byabadhan 1990
  47. Debata 1990
  48. Raktareen 1990
  49. Akrosh 1989
  50. Agun 1988
  51. Madhuban 1988
  52. Shankhachur 1988
  53. Ekanta Apan 1987
  54. Pratikar 1987
  55. Ghare Baire 1985
  56. Pratigna 1985
  57. Prarthana 1984
  58. Doosri Dulhan 1983
  59. Pikoo 1983
  60. Pratidan 1983
  61. Tanaya 1983
  62. Kalyug 1981
  63. Dui Prithibi 1980
  64. Shatranj Ke Khilari 1977

Director
  1.  
    1. Agun 1988
    2. An August Requiem (1982)

Awards:

      Best Actor

  •       Ghare Baire BFJA Awards [1986]
  •       Lathi BFJA Awards [1997]

Mumbai, Nov 17 (IANS) Veteran actor Victor Banerjee’s stint in Bollywood has been far from satisfactory and he has decided to steer clear of Hindi films.”I’ve reached a stage and an age in my career where I need to do work that keeps me economically and emotionally comfortable. And for that I need to get into spaces that don’t require me to make too many compromises with my beliefs as an an actor,” Victor told IANS on phone from his home in Mussourri.

From the time he played the lead with Shabana Azmi in Lekh Tandon’s “Doosri Dulhan” to his recent stint as Rani Mukerji and Aishwarya Rai’s father in “Ta Ra Rum Pum” and “Sarkar Raj”, respectively, Victor, best remembered for putting Indian cinema on the international map after playing the lead in David Lean’s “A Passage To India”, is not being offered anything substantial now.

Even Bengali cinema, once happy to offer Victor plum roles, has no space worthy of him. So, the veteran actor has been steering clear of Bengali film offers as well.

He has now moved on to the small screen. He is doing a television serial and Victor says he is comfortable with what he is doing.

“It’s a Bengali family soap called ‘Bandhan’ on a new channel. I play the patriarch of the family – what else can I play at my age – who holds his offsprings into the family fold for as long as he can. Finally, he gives them the freedom to go whichever way they want.”

The serial went on air in August and Victor has to shoot just for 10 days in a month for the family drama.

“And I get paid well enough for me and my wife and my dog to be well looked-after. I can spend a part of every month in Kolkata. The rest of the time I can be in Mussouri,” he said.

Other Sources:
1. Victor Banerjee on Wiki
2. Victor Banerjee on IMDB

One Response to “Victor Banerjee”

  1. Dr. R.K.Verma says:

    Very informative about Victor. Congrats.

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