Early Life & Career:
Hemanta Das possessed no great looks. Rather he was like an everyman in most of the movies, where he played the roles of a vagabond(Jajabara) or a ordinary villager(Chilike Teere). But without him no movie could be complete as viewers identified with him over last 5 decades.
Starting with his debut movie Bhai Bhai in 1954 to a movie he acted a couple of years ago, he made the ordinary man famous something like RK Laxman’s common man.
Like his everyman roles in all the Oriya films, in real life too he was an amiable person. From Bijay Mohanty to Asim Basu everyone who encountered Das, have their own tales to recount about his humble self.
The last few years of Das was a saga of untold suffering. He lost his only child, a son, who died at the age of 14. He suffered from megalocephaly(enlargement of head). Unable to cope up with the sorrow, his heartbroken wife died a few years later.
A few years ago he broke one of his legs and had to be wheeled into Bhubaneswar in 2007 for conferring of Bhumiputra award given by Orissa Cine Artist Association.
In his simplicity, the Everyman of Oriya cinema has shown that one does not need a great face to leave a lasting impression in the viewers’ minds. All that you need is original acting – that lingers in people’s hearts even after the credits have stopped rolling and curtains come down in cinema halls.
With his passing away, Oriya cinema has lost an inspiring actor who taught the likes of Bijay Mohanty the basics of natural acting.
Hemanta Das Filmography:
1956 Bhai Bhai
1976 Shesha Shrabana, Amar Prem
1977 Sandhya Tara, Chilika Teerey
1980 Danda Balunga, Maa-o-Mamata
1981 Shodh, Pooja, Seeta Raati
1982 Ashanta Graha, Hisab Nikas
1983 Ram Rahim, Bhakta Salabega, Aashar Akash, Swapna Sagara, Kalyani
1984 Pratidhwani, Neerab Jhada, Jaga Balia,
1985 Sanskara, Sankha Sindura, Pooja Phula, Nala Damayanti, Chaka Bhaunri, Jaga Hatare Pagha, Mamata Mage Mula, Sapana Banika, Samay Bada Balwan, Hakim Babu
1987 Sabu Mayare Baya, Kasturi, Bhuli Huenav
1988 Thili Jhia Heli Bahu, Kanyadaan, Kichu Smruti Kichu Anubhuti
1989 Mamata Ra Dori, Sasti
1990 Agni Veena
1994 Kothachilo, Akuha Katha
2009 Tume Hi Sathi Mora
Read more about the life story of Sriram Panda