Satyajit Ray, the renowned Indian filmmaker, was known for his contribution to the Indian film industry, which was largely dominated by Bollywood. However, his personal opinions on Bollywood are not widely documented.
According to an article by The Hindu, Ray was critical of the commercialization of Indian cinema, and the way Bollywood prioritized entertainment over artistic expression. He was quoted as saying, "I have always maintained that the primary duty of a film is to entertain and not to preach. But in our country, the line between entertainment and vulgarity is very thin."
In an interview with Film Companion, Ray's son, Sandip Ray, stated that his father was not a fan of the masala films produced by Bollywood, which combined elements of action, romance, and melodrama. He believed that such films lacked depth and relied heavily on formulaic storytelling.
Additionally, Ray was known for his strong sense of national identity and his desire to create films that were uniquely Indian. He felt that Bollywood was influenced too heavily by Western cinema, and he sought to create a distinct Indian style of filmmaking.
However, it is important to note that despite his criticisms of Bollywood, Satyajit Ray also acknowledged the commercial success of Bollywood and its ability to reach a large audience. In an interview with The Hindu, he stated, "Commercial cinema in India has a tremendous hold over the masses, and it is here to stay. The challenge before serious filmmakers is to find a way of co-existing with commercial cinema, and reach the people with their message."
In conclusion, based on the available sources, it appears that Satyajit Ray had mixed feelings about Bollywood. While he was critical of its commercialization and formulaic storytelling, he also recognized its popularity and mass appeal. Nevertheless, his personal opinions on Bollywood are not widely documented, and further research may be necessary to gain a more comprehensive understanding of his views.