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Ritwik Ghatak (1925–1976) was a Bengali filmmaker and a founder, along with Mrinal Sen and other directors, of the Indian New Wave or “Parallel Cinema” movement,
a counterpoint to the Bollywood industry.

His works are known for their acute social awareness and avant-garde method. Ghatak’s creative career began at the Indian People’s Theater Association, where he wrote and directed plays that built upon the work of Bertholt Brecht and folk theater. His best known films are a trilogy that includes The Cloud-Capped Star (1960), E-Flat (1961), and Golden Lining (1962), a depiction of the stark social world of Kolkata neighborhoods. In 1974, Ghatak made his last feature film, Reason, Debate and a Story. An experiment in narrative and medium, the film is built upon the wandering through the countryside of a fallen intellectual—an alcoholic played by Ghatak himself—and his meetings with allegorical characters. Ghatak lived and worked in Kolkata and Pune.