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Debashree Roy

Debashree Roy Indian actress

Indian actress
The basics
Quick Facts
Intro Indian actress
Countries India
Occupations Actor
Gender female
Birth 13 June 1961 (Kolkata, West Bengal, India)
Spouse: Prosenjit Chatterjee
The details

Debashree Roy is an Indian actress, dancer, politician and animal rights activist. She is predominantly known for her performance in Bengali cinema. She has been a highly successful leading actress in Bengali cinema throughout eighties and nineties as well as a critically acclaimed actress. She has acted in more than hundred films and has won over forty awards, including a National Film Award for Best Actress for the film Unishe April (1994). In some of her films as a child actress she used the screen name Kumari Chumki. She acted with the screen name Chintamani in the Tamil film industry. She is a renowned Odissi dancer as well as the producer, choreographer and motivator of Nataraj dance troupe. She was applauded as a dancer in Continental Europe after her stage venture Bichitro had been performed abroad.

Roy shot to fame after she had appeared in Aparna Sen's much acclaimed film 36 Chowringhee Lane (1981). She garnered critical acclaim for her performances in Bengali films like Cinemay Jeman Hoy (1994) by Mrinmoy Chakraborty, Unishe April (1994) by Ritiparno Ghosh, Asukh (1999) by Rituparno Ghosh, Shilpantar (2002) by Bappaditya Bandopadhyay and Prohor (2004) by Subhadro Chowdhury. She appeared in Hindi films like Jiyo To Aise Jiyo (1981), Bura Aadmi (1983) Justice Chaudhury (1983), Phulwari (1984), Seepeeyan (1984), Kabhi Ajnabi The (1985), Pyar Ka Sawan (1989) and Swami Vivekananda (1998 film). She acted opposite Prem Nazir in the Malayalam movie Ee Ganam Marakkumo (1978). She has been one of the most celebrated actresses of Bengali Cinema. Her major commercially successful Bengali films are Kuheli (1971), Dadar Kirti (1980), Subarnagolak (1981), Troyee (1982), Parabat Priya (1984), Bhalobasa Bhalobasa (1985), Madhumoy (1986), Samrat O Sundari (1987), Heerer Shikal (1988), Shankhachur (1988), Surer Sathi (1988), Surer Akashe (1988), Chokher Aloy (1989), Akrosh (1989), Jhankar (1989), Ahankar (1991), Shubho Kamana (1991), Mayabini (1992), Purushottam (1992), Anutap (1992), Raktelekha (1992), Shraddhanjali (1993), Tomar Rakte Aamar Sohag (1993), Tobu Mone Rekho (1994), Beyadap (1996), Bhoy (1996), Lathi (1996), Jiban Jouban (1997), Putrabadhu (1998), Debanjali (2000), Ek Je Achhe Kanya (2001), Yuddho (2005), MLA Fatakesto (2006), Mahaguru (2007), Shukno Lanka (2010).

Early life

Roy was born to Birendra Kishore Roy and Arati Roy in Kolkata, West Bengal and was brought up there as well. At the age of 5, she acted in the movie Pagol Thakur (1967). In 1969, she appeared as a child artist in the movie Balak Gadadhar. In 1971, at the age of 9, she portrayed the daughter of Biswajit Chatterjee and Sandhya Roy in Kuheli (inspired from Rebecca), a film directed by Tarun Majumdar. This film became a blockbuster. In all these films, she was credited by the name Kumari Chumki.


Initial Struggle (1978 - 1982)

In 1978, Roy appeared in Arabinda Mukherjee's Bengali film Nadi Theke Sagare (1978). In the same year she acted opposite Prem Nazir in the Malayalam movie Ee Ganam Marakkumo (1978). In 1980, she appeared in Tarun Majumdar's romantic drama film Dadar Kirti. In the film, she portrayed the character of Bini, the innocent sibling of Saraswati portrayed by Mahua Roychoudhury. She was again cast in the role of the chirpy sibling of Mahua Roychoudhury in Manu Sen's blockbuster Bengali film Subarnagolak (1981). She also appeared in Dilip Mukherjee's Bengali film Father (1981). In 1981, Roy appeared in Aparna Sen's much acclaimed English film 36 Chowringhee Lane. She portrayed the character of Nandita who, along with her boyfriend Samaresh exploits her former teacher's apartment for making love to each other. The film was a major failure at box office, still Roy was applauded by media personalities due to her good look and unlaboured screen presence. In the same year, she appeared in Kanak Mishra's Hindi film Jiyo To Aise Jiyo (1981) under Rajashri Productions. She played the love interest of Arun Govil in the film. In 1982, she appeared in Tarun Majumdar's Bengali film Meghmukti.

Prime Success (1982 - 2002)

In 1982, she appeared in Goutam Mukherjee's blockbuster Bengali film Troyee. She was paired with Mithun Chakraborty in the film. The success of the film brought her leading roles in the following Bengali films like Aparupa (1982), Samapti (1983) and Agamikal (1983). In 1982, she appeared in Desh Gautam's Bura Aadmi. In the same year she appeared in K. Raghavendra Rao's multistarer Hindi film Justice Chaudhury alongside Jeetendra, Hema Malini, Moushumi Chatterjee and Sridevi.

In 1984, she appeared in Mukul Dutt's Hindi film Phulwari under Rajashri Productions. In the film, Roy portrayed the character of Lali, a beautiful, conceited and pampered girl who insults her boyfriend Rajiv on the day of their engagement and discloses to everyone present at her engagement party that she has given consent to marry him because she wanted to avenge an earlier incident when he humiliated her in front of public. She was paired with Shashi Puri in this film. She was also paired with Kanowaljit Singh in Akash Jain's film Seepeeyan (1984) where she portrayed the character of Kalyani, a beautiful woman who tries to commit suicide but is saved by a man of inferior caste. In 1984, she was cast in the role of Kundanadinee in Ajay Kar's Bengali period film Bishabriksha based on the veteran Bengali novelist Bankim Chandra Chattopadhyay's novel of the same name. She appeared in Dipranjan Bose's Bengali drama film Parabat Priya (1984) alongside Tapas Paul and Mahua Roychoudhury where she played the character of Piyali, a highly pampered girl who decides to poison a glass of milk that her husband was supposed to take.

In 1985, she was paired with Sandeep Patil in Kabhi Ajnabi The (1985) directed and produced by Vijay Singh. She played the character of Asha who decides to sacrifice her love for the sake another woman who had previously been her boyfriend's ladylove. The film was over-hyped regarding the Bollywood debut of Sandeep Patil and Roy's sensuous enacting with him in the song sequence Geet Mere Hothon Ko De Gaya Koi, and assumed to be a huge hit at box office. Unfortunately the film became a major failure causing a doom to her Bollywood career.

In 1985, she was cast opposite Tapas Paul in Tarun Majumdar's romantic drama Bhalobasa Bhalobasa. This film established Roy's pairing with Tapas Paul as the leading on-screen pairing of nineteen eighties. Her other major hits with Paul are Uttar Lipi (1986), Arpan (1987), Shankhachur (1988), Surer Sathi (1988), Surer Akashe (1988), Nayanmani (1989), Chokher Aloy (1989), Shubha Kamana (1991), Mayabini (1992), Phire Paoa (1993), Tobu Mone Rekho (1994), Putrabadhu (1998).

In 1988, Roy portrayed the character of Satyavati, the second wife of Shantanu, the king of Hastinapur in the televised version of the Indian epic Mahabharata, by B.R.Chopra.

Roy also delivered hits with Prosenjit Chatterjee and Chiranjeet Chakraborty. She was paired with Chiranjeet Chakraborty for the first time in Madhumoy (1986) which also stars Prosenjit Chatterjee and Mahua Roychoudhury. Her pairing with Chakraborty conveyed major hits like Mouna Mukhar (1987), Heerer Shikal (1988), Papi (1990), Tomar Rakte Amar Sohag (1993), Bhoy (1996), Beyadap (1996), Jiban Jouban (1997), Joddha (1987), Debanjali (2000).

In 1987, she was paired with Prosenjit Chatterjee in Bimal Ray's Samrat O Sundari. The film was a major hit and gave acknowledgement to Roy's pairing with Prosenjit Chatterjee as a bankable one. Her other hits with Chatterjee are Ora Charjon (1988), Jhankar (1989), Ahankar (1991), Raktelekha (1992), Purushottam (1992), Rakter Swad (1993), Shraddhanjali (1993), Nati Binodini (1994). Roy was paired with Chatterjee for the last time in Rituparno Ghosh's much acclaimed film Unishe April (1994). The film won her the National Film Award for Best Actress category. In the same year she appeared in Cinemay Jeman Hoy.

Roy portrayed the role of Sarada Devi in Swami Vivekananda(1998 film). She appeared in Tapan Sinha's Bengali film Ajab Ganyer Ajab Katha (1998) under the banner of Shree Venkatesh Films. She appeared in a cameo role in Tapan Sinha's Hindi film Daughters of This Century (1999). In 1999, she appeared in Rituparno Ghosh's Asukh landing the character of Rohini Choudhury, an actress who is suspicious by nature and begins to suspect her father to be an HIV positive due to some illegitimate relation she is not aware of. The film became a commercial as well as a major critical success. It won her Bengal Film Journalists' Association – Best Actress Award in 2000.

She appeared in Subrata Sen's Ek Je Achhe Kanya (2001) which was major commercial successs. She was paired with Sabyasachi Chakrabarty in this film. She appeared in Goutam Ghose's much acclaimed Bengali film Dekha (2001) alongside Soumitra Chatterjee. In 2002, she appeared in Bappaditya Bandopadhyay's much acclaimed film Shilpantar. She played the character of a woman who works in a circus and draws mass by her act of eating raw live snake or hen. In the same year she played the character of Kadambari Devi in Sukanta Ray's film Chhelebela alongside Jisshu Sengupta playing Rabindranath Tagore.

Career Expansion (2003 - 2007)

In 2004, she appeared in Subhadro Chowdhury's National Award winning film Prohor where she played the character of Nadita who donates her blood for a man who raped her earlier. In 2005, she appeared in Bratya Basu's Teesta. The film was a critical and commercial failure, still it earns her Anandalok Award in the Best Actress in A Leading Role category in 2006. After a series of flops like Satabdir Golpo (2004), Sagar Kinare (2004), Ami Je Ke Tomar (2004) and Teesta (2005) she was paired with Mithun Chakrabarty in blockbuster films like Yuddho (2005), MLA Fatakesto (2006) and Mahaguru (2007).

Setback (2008 - 2013)

From 2008 Roy made some impolitic choices of selecting films that did not equalize her stature and led her career into a major setback. She had a series of flops like Antarbas (2010), Thikana Rajpath (2010), Jibon Rong Berong (2011), Bhalo Meye Mondo Meye (2012), Life in Park Street (2012), Antare Bahire (2012), Swabhumi (2013) to name a few. In 2010, she appeared in Gaurav Pandey's film Shukno Lanka where she portrayed the character of a loving woman whose husband is indifferent to her. The film was a major hit at box office and her dance to the popular number Sundari Kamala was enormously loved by audience.

Stage Performance

Roy is a well-known Odissi dancer. She started her dancing career as a stage performer in her early years. She took her dancing lessons from her mother, her elder sister Purnima Roy, Bandana Sen and Kelucharan Mahapatra. She is the producer, choreographer and motivator of Nataraj dance troupe. She was applauded as a dancer in Continental Europe after her stage venture Bichitro had been performed abroad. She rendered the nine moods of Bharata Muni's Natya Shastra in her stage venture Navaras.


Debashree, currently a Member of the Legislative Assembly from All India Trinamool Congress, successfully contested the West Bengal assembly elections 2011 against CPI(M) candidate and former minister Kanti Ganguly, from the Raidighi.

Personal life

Roy dated Sandeep Patil for some time. She was married to Bengali actor Prasenjit Chatterjee for a brief period. She is the maternal aunt of Bollywood actress Rani Mukherjee.


  • 24th July (2014)
  • Jakhan Esechhilem (2013)
  • Tabu Mane Rekho (2013)
  • Antoral (2013)
  • Swabhoomi (2013)
  • Latto (2013)
  • Antare Bahire (2012)
  • Life in Park Street (2012)
  • Bhalo Meye Mando Meye (2012)
  • Jibon Rang Berang (2011)
  • Ei Aranya (2011)
  • Thik Ekdin (2011)
  • Haanda Bhonda (2010)
  • Antarbas (2010)
  • Thikana Rajpath (2010)
  • Sukhno Lonka (2010)
  • Rahasya (2009)
  • Anubhab (2009)
  • Pakhi (2009)
  • Narak Guljar (2009)
  • Lal Ranger Duniya (2008)
  • Dus Din Pore (2007)
  • Mahaguru (2007)
  • Tiger (2007)
  • Minister Fatakeshto (2007)
  • MLA Fatakeshto (2006)
  • Abhimanyu (2006)
  • Je Jon Thake Majhkhane (2006)
  • Manush Bhut (2006)
  • Debi (2005)
  • Yuddho (2005)
  • Tista (2005)
  • Ami Je Ke Tomar (2004)
  • Prohor (2004)
  • Sagar Kinare (2004)
  • Satabdir Galpo (2004)
  • Warish (2004)
  • Mejdidi (2003)
  • Abaidha (2002) (The Demolition Man)
  • Chelebela (2002)
  • Ferari Fauj (2002)
  • Gandharbi (2002)
  • Shilpantar (2002)
  • Antarghaat (2001)
  • Dekha (2001)
  • Ek Je Aachhe Kanya (2001) (Rupa The Girl)
  • Chaka (2000)
  • Debanjali (2000)
  • Joy Ma Durga (2000)
  • Asukh (1999)
  • Jiban Niye Khela (1999)
  • Rajdanda (1999)
  • Sundar Bou (1999)
  • Ajab Ganyer Ajab Katha (1998)
  • Daho (1998)
  • Ganga (1998)
  • Putrabadhu (1998)
  • Swami Vivekananda (1998 film) as Sarada Devi
  • Jiban Jouban (1997)
  • Yoddha (1997)
  • Beyadap (1996)
  • Bhoy (1996)
  • Lathi (1996)
  • Rabibar (1996)
  • Unishe April (1996) (19 April)
  • Cinemay Jamon Hoy (1994)
  • Nagpanchami (1994)
  • Noti Binodini (1994)
  • Rajar Raja (1994)
  • Rakta Nadir Dhara (1994)
  • Sandhyatara (1994)
  • Tobu Mane Rekho (1994)
  • Mayer Ashirbad (1993)
  • Phire Paoa (1993)
  • Rakter Swad (1993)
  • Shraddhanjali (1993)
  • Tomar Rakte Amar Sohag (1993)
  • Anutap (1992)
  • Gunjan (1992)
  • Mayabini (1992)
  • Pritrireen (1992)
  • Prem (1992)
  • Purushottam (1992)
  • Rakte Lekha (1992)
  • Ahankar (1991)
  • Sadharan Meya (1991)
  • Shubha Kamana (1991)
  • Thikana (1991)
  • Bhagyalipi (1990)
  • Debata (1990)
  • Garmil (1990)
  • Mamta Ki Chhaon Mein (1990)
  • Papi (1990)
  • Agnitrishna (1989)
  • Akrosh (1989)
  • Aparanher Alo (1989) (Twilight)
  • Asha (1989)
  • Chokher Aloy (1989)
  • Jhankar (1989)
  • Nayanmoni (1989)
  • Pyar ka sawan (1989)
  • Phulwari (1989)
  • Agaman (1988)
  • Debi Baran (1988)
  • Heerar Shikal (1988)
  • Ora Charjan (1988)
  • Shankhachur (1988)
  • Surer Sathi (1988)
  • Mahabharat TV Series as Satyavati
  • Surer Akashe (1988)
  • Manaivi Ready (1987)
  • Arpan (1987)
  • Gayak (1987)
  • Mouna Mukhar (1987)
  • Pratikar (1987)
  • Samrat O Sundari (1987)
  • Abhishap (1986)
  • Artanad (1986)
  • Jiban Lalmahal (1986)
  • Madhumoy (1986)
  • Parinati (1986)
  • Tin Purush (1986)
  • Uttar Lipi (1986)
  • Kabhi Ajnabi The (1985)
  • Bhalobasa Bhalobasa (1985)
  • Nishante (1985)
  • Bishabriksha (1984)
  • Parbat Priya (1984)
  • Prarthana (1984)
  • Sagar Balaka (1984)
  • Agamikal (1983)
  • Nishibhor (1983)
  • Samapti (1983)
  • Aparupa (1982)
  • Meghmukti (1982)
  • Troyee (1982)
  • Father (1981)
  • 36 Chowringhee Lane (1981)
  • Jiyo To Aise Jiyo (1981)
  • Subarno Golak (1981)
  • Dadar Kirti (1980)
  • Ee Ganam Marakkumo (Malayalam) (1978)
  • Kuheli (1971)
  • Balak Gadadhar (1969)


  • Bangabhusan-the second highest civilian award in West Bengal In 2014.
  • 1st Kalakar Award-1993-Best Actress for "Prem".
  • 3rd Kalakar Award-1995-Best Actress Award for "SandhyaTara".
  • Kalakar Award-1996-Best Actress (Television) Award for "Louha Kapat".
  • Kalakar Award-2002-Best Actress Award for "Dekha".
  • Kalakar Award-2003-Best Actress Award for Silpantar
  • National Award-1997-best actress for Unishe April
  • BFJA Award-1992-best actress for Thikana
  • BFJA Award-1997-best actress for Unishe April
  • BFJA Award-2000-best actress award for Asukh
  • Anondalok Award-2005-best actress for Tista.
  • Bharat Nirman Award in 1999.
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