K. Balachander who turns 84 today has already surpassed more than of his age in cinema. He has created more than 100 movies and started a new trend in Tamil serials too. Here's a look back at his journey, who gave the, Superstar Rajnikanth and Universal Hero Kamalhaasan to our industry.
The man who popularly referred as, Iyakkunar Sigaram has started to his journey as screenwriter back in 1964 with 'Dheiva Thai'. He doubled his potential with the cult classic 'Server Sundaram' in his sophomore effort. Soon he transformed himself into a director with one of his stage play 'Neerkumizhi'.
Nagesh, who started his career as a comedian has found his feet as a character artist/hero from K.B's lens. With 'Ehir Neechal' he bagged got the first recognition in the form of, TN state film award for Best Dialogue Writer. His stories dealt with people who possess strong will to climb the ladder with their skills. Unconventional themes, bold narrations, strong portrayal of women characters are his trademark style of film making.
In the era of, M.G.R & Sivaji Ganesan, K.B went on to direct Sivaji alone in 'Ethiroli' in his first decade of film making. He never ran behind the stars. He ensured that the content is the king and he portrayed people who deserve to be as the central character to his style of story telling.
After stamping himself as the best director with 'Aval Oru Thodar Kathai' which bagged the filmfare award, he went on to introduce one of the biggest icons of Indian Cinema. Rajnikanth made his debut with 'Apoorva Rgangal' which fetched one more film fare award for direction and a National award of best feature film in Tamil. He started to shift focus to other languages such as, Telugu and Kannada, only to come back with a story which reflects the true face of our society even after three decades. The evergreen 'Varumaiyin Niram Sigappu', which bagged filmafare and TN state awards for him.
K.B wanted to free himself from serious themes and directed the tamil version of 'Gol Maal'. Thillu mullu stands tall for its ultimate dialogues (penned by Visu) and natural acting by Rajnikanth till now. In 1981, he made the Indian cinema industry to turn towards his 'Ek duuje ke Liye' which is actually a remake of his own movie 'Maro Charitra' from Telugu.
Kamalhassan and Rati Agnihotri were really meant for each other and the movie went on to become one of the biggest blockbusters. The song 'Tere mere beech mein' sung by Lata Mangeshkar and S.P.B became viral even in the era where internet was unheard by Indian people.
In the same year, he voiced his opinion ferociously about the negligence of govt towards rural village. He made an Nostradamus effort by visualizing the pain for water scarcity which actually became the true scene for the entire state therafter. His next project is an epic ' Sindhu Bhairavi' features Sivakumar and Suhasini. The movie dealt with the waves of emotion of a Carnatic singer who falls in love with his ardent critIc after his marriage. A tale of getting attracted for mutual intelligence has picturized so poetically.
He made his mark with his new age thinking in Tele Serials as well. His TV stint has had an extended view of his movies in the past. 'Kadhal Pagadai', 'Premi', “Rayil Snegam, “Kaiyalavu Manasu” and 'Sahana' were the notable ones. Apart from giving the Superstar and Ulaganaayagan, he introduced one of the all time great villian/character artist Prakashraj, Saritha, and a brilliant comedian of Tamil cinema, Vivek. Given his age, he will be the first one to appreciate a good movie even if it is from a newbie. If he had given a word to attend any function, he would be present under any cost.
His legacy is here to stay for centuries to come and addressing him as 'Iyakkunar Sigaram' is just an understatement. We wish him a great life with good health in the years to come.