The mystic love between the Indian Nobel Laureate poet Rabindranath Tagore and the great Argentine intellectual Victoria Ocampo has been a matter of deep interest among erudite circles all over the world ever since they happened to meet in San Isidro, Argentina in 1924.Tagore on way to Peru being held up at Buenos Aires on account of a bad Influenza attack. Although Ocampo had developed a deep spiritual interest in Tagore and his philosophy since she had read in 1914 Andre Gide’s French translation of Gitanjali, the Nobel awarded book of poetry by Tagore, she could hardly imagine that she would ever have any opportunity to meet in real life Tagore, her idol of worship. As the Argentine physicians advised Tagore full rest till complete recovery, Ocampo prompted to host him along with his honourary secretary Leonard Elmhirst at Villa Miralrio at San Isidro. Here Tagore was held up for two months (November-December, 1924) in course of which the close relation between Tagore and Ocampo developed. They could meet only once more for a short time in Paris, but the relation continued through regular correspondence till Tagore’ss demise in 1941.
Argentine film director Pablo César’s Indo-Argentinean film ‘Thinking of Him’ is set to release in theatres across India on May 6, 2022. The film, co-produced by award-winning Indian filmmaker Suraj Kumar, explores the Indian Nobel Laureate Rabindranath Tagore’s relationship with the Argentine writer Victoria Ocampo. Having read the French translation of ‘Gitanjali,’ Ocampo idolized Tagore and when he fell ill during his Bueno Aires visit in 1924, she is said to have taken care of him.
César has been making films right from the age of 13 when his older brother presented him with a Super 8mm camera and taught him the first techniques to film. He is a professor at the University of Cinema in Buenos Aires since 1992. ‘Thinking of Him’ stars the legendary Victor Banerjee in the role of Tagore and the Argentine actor Eleonora Wexler in the part of Victoria. The film also stars the noted Bengali actress Raima Sen and Hector Bordoni in pivotal roles.
Speaking about his experience of shooting in India, Pablo César said: “It was a unique experience to shoot in India. I have known India since 1994, although it is difficult to know all of India. But over the years I have understood many things about the idiosyncrasies and behavior of people from many places in India, a country that I personally admire.”
Sharing his thoughts about the film, Suraj Kumar said: “We are delighted that the film is finally releasing in the theatres across India and that too on the occasion of Gurudev Rabindranath Tagore’s 161st birth anniversary. We have really been fortunate to have someone like Pablo at the helm and none other than Victor Banerjee in the central role of Tagore.
Speaking about the film, Victor Banerjee said: “The film is about what Victoria Ocampo thought of Tagore and it is not about what you and I think of Tagore. As part of my preparation, I had to understand how much she really felt for him as a woman, and as an intellectual. She was half his age when they met, but there was something beyond mere admiration in their relationship. It was, of course, Victoria who organised Tagore’s first art exhibition in Paris in 1930.”