Authors: A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z

A collection of quotes and thoughts by Satyajit Ray on direction, films, art, cinema, acting, improvisation, people, person, worth, changes, idea, story, mind, music, success, youth and time.

32 Quotes By Satyajit Ray That Prove His Genius

Quick Facts

Famous As: Indian filmmaker

Born On: May 2, 1921

Died On: April 23, 1992

Born In: Calcutta

Died At Age: 70

Satyajit Ray was one of the most distinguished Indian author and filmmaker who is considered to be of the greatest filmmakers in the world of cinema. Satyajit’s first movie was ‘The Apu Trilogy: Pather Panchali’, whose first part was released in the year 1955. This movie won ten international prizes and also bagged in ‘Inaugural Best Human Document Award’ at the ‘Cannes Film Festival’. All the three parts of this movie created revolution among the Indian cinema at that time and were appreciated worldwide. His movies like, ‘Aparajito’, ‘ParashPathar’ and ‘Charulata’ are some of his well-known works amongst many. Ray had made movies on various genres ranging from fantasy, musical drama, romance, suspense and historical dramas. Besides being a distinguished director he was also an illustrator, fiction writer, music composer, film critic, graphic designer, publisher and calligrapher. He had written several novels and short stories primarily for children and adolescents. Ray has been one of the most lauded, applauded and acclaimed filmmaker in the history of cinema which include an ‘Academy Award’ and ‘Bharat Ratan’. Here is a treasure trove of thoughts and views expressed by the genius filmmaker through his writings, movies, scripts, books and novels. Following are the quotes and thoughts by Satyajit Ray that besides giving you insights in his directorial style also expresses his take on life.

The only solutions that are ever worth anything are the solutions that people find themselves.

Satyajit Ray

Last, but not least -- in fact, this is most important -- you need a happy ending. However, if you can create tragic situations and jerk a few tears before the happy ending, it will work much better.

Satyajit Ray

The director is the only person who knows what the film is about.

Satyajit Ray

At the age when Bengali youth almost inevitably writes poetry, I was listening to European classical music.

Satyajit Ray

There's always some room for improvisation.

Satyajit Ray

When I write an original story I write about people I know first-hand and situations I'm familiar with. I don't write stories about the nineteenth century.

Satyajit Ray

What is attempted in these film is of course a synthesis. But it can be seen by someone who has his feet in both cultures. Someone who will bring to bear on the films involvement and detachment in equal measure.

Satyajit Ray

It was only after Pather Panchali had some success at home that I decided to do a second part. But I didn't want to do the same kind of film again, so I made a musical.

Satyajit Ray

There is a ban on Indian films in Pakistan, so that's half of our market gone.

Satyajit Ray

The conception of background music is changing. You use less and less of it these days.

Satyajit Ray

My films play only in Bengal, and my audience is the educated middle class in the cities and small towns. They also play in Bombay, Madras and Delhi where there is a Bengali population.

Satyajit Ray

My cameraman and I devised a method, which we started using from my second film, which applies mainly to day scenes shot in the studio, where we used bounced light instead of direct light. We agreed with this thing of four or five shadows following the actors is dreadful.

Satyajit Ray

I wouldn't mind taking a rest for three or four months, but I have to keep on making films for the sake of my crew, who just wait for the next film because they're not on a fixed salary.

Satyajit Ray

I think they quite like me when I work because I'm one of the safer directors to back, because even if my films don't bring their costs in back home, once they're shown outside of India they manage to cover the costs.

Satyajit Ray

Ever since Two Daughters I've been composing my own music.

Satyajit Ray

I mix Indian instruments with Western instruments all the time.

Satyajit Ray

You cannot go beyond a certain limit in your expenditure if you want to bring back money from your local market, which is very small after Pakistan.

Satyajit Ray

When I'm shooting on location, you get ideas on the spot - new angles. You make not major changes but important modifications, that you can't do on a set. I do that because you have to be economical.

Satyajit Ray

Well the Bombay film wasn't always like how it is now. It did have a local industry. There were realistic films made on local scenes. But it gradually changed over the years.

Satyajit Ray

Sometimes a director is making three films. Perhaps he is shooting a film in Madras and a film in Bombay and he can't leave Madras as some shooting has to be done, so he directs by telephone. The shooting takes place. On schedule.

Satyajit Ray

Particularly in the final stages I always find that I'm rushed. It's dangerous when you're rushed in the editing stage, most of my early films are flawed in the cutting.

Satyajit Ray

Most of the top actors and actresses may be working in ten or twelve films at the same time, so they will give one director two hours and maybe shoot in Bombay in the morning and Madras in the evening. It happens.

Satyajit Ray

I've made seventeen or eighteen films now, only two of which have been original screenplays, all the others have been based on short stories or novels, and I find the long short story ideal for adaptation.

Satyajit Ray

I was interested in both Western and Indian classical music.

Satyajit Ray

I had developed this habit of writing scenarios as a hobby. I would find out which stories had been sold to be made into films and I would write my own treatment and then compare it.

Satyajit Ray

Cinema’s characteristic forte is its ability to capture and communicate the intimacies of the human mind.

Satyajit Ray

MAMMOOTTY has presented an outstanding performance in film'New Delhi'

Satyajit Ray

Dominus Omnium Magister. It means God is the master of all things.

Satyajit Ray

Bicycle Thief is a triumphant discovery of the fundamentals of cinema, and De Sica has openly acknowledged his debt to Chaplin.

Satyajit Ray

If the theme is simple, you can include a hundred details that create the illusion of actuality better.

Satyajit Ray

I don't understand these national awards, because half of those who sit in judgement over Indian films do not... possess the competence to evaluate a film correctly.

Satyajit Ray