J. Mahendran

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J. Mahendran
Born J. Alexander
(1939-07-25) 25 July 1939 (age 75)
Ilaiyangudi, Madras Presidency, British India
Residence Chennai, Tamil Nadu, India
Other names Mahendran
Occupation Literary editor, director, screenwriter
Years active 1966–2006
Children John Mahendran

J. Mahendran (born 25 July 1939 as Alexander)[1] is an Indian film director in the Tamil film industry, who is best known for his true narration of screenplay and making. Though largely ignored during his times, Mahendran is regarded as one of the greatest film makers of Tamil cinema and has inspired many upcoming directors. Particularly he has been an inspiration for the legends of Tamil Cinema like Mani Ratnam and Rajinikanth.[2]

Mahendran entered the film industry as a screenwriter, writing scripts for nearly 26 films. He made an immediate impact with his first directional venture Mullum Malarum (1978). Mahendran's next film Uthiripookkal, based on a short story written by Pudumaipithan, firmly established him as an important film maker in Tamil cinema. His Nenjathai Killathe won three National Film Awards including the award for the best regional film.

Biography[edit]

Mahendran was born in 1939 to Joseph Chelliah, a teacher and Manonmani.[3] Mahendran did his schooling in Ilayangudi and completed his intermediate at American College, Madurai.[3] Later he joined Alagappa Government Arts College to do a Bachelor of Arts in Economics. During his college days, he was very active in stage plays. It was during that time when M. G. Ramachandran (M.G.R) was invited as the chief guest for the college day during which Mahendran gave a speech that directly criticized the commercial elements that existed in cinema.[3] Impressed by his speech M.G.R praised Mahendran and said that he could become a good critic.[3] After completing his degree, he went to Madras to study law. Seven months after joining the course he had to discontinue due to financial concerns.[3] He then decided to go back to Ilayangudi. However, on the insistence of Karaikudi Kannappa Valliappan he joined Inamuzhakkam, a periodical as a journalist.[3] It was during this time he met M.G.R again and he was asked to write the screenplay of Ponniyin Selvan after the former decided to make a film based on the story.[3] The idea of developing the screenplay into a film got delayed, and M.G.R asked Mahendran to write a story for his drama troupe.[3] Mahendran wrote a script titled Anaadhaigal.[3] M.G.R decided to make a film based in the play. He named the film Vaazhve Vaa and acted in the lead role alongside Savitri.[3] The project got shelved after three days of shooting. Soon M.G.R acted in a film called Kanchi Thalaivan and he recommended Mahendran to the director make him an assistant.[3]

Mahendran made his breakthrough as a screenwriter for the film Naam Moovar in 1966.[4] After the success of the film he got more offers from the same banner and worked in films like Sabaash Thambi and Panakkara Pillai, both released in the subsequent years.[4] He also wrote the script for Nirakudam starring Sivaji Ganesan.[4] He announced that he was working on a new film in 2014 starring newcomers, for which Ilaiyaraaja would score music.[5]

Filmography[edit]

Year Film Credited as Notes
Director Story Screenplay Dialogues
1966 Naam Moovar Green tickY
1967 Sabaash Thambi Green tickY
1968 Panakkara Pillai Green tickY
1969 Niraikudam Green tickY
1972 Ganga Green tickY
1974 Thirudi Green tickY
1974 Thangapathakkam Green tickY Green tickY
1975 Thottadhellam Ponnagum Green tickY
1975 Nambikkai Natchathiram Green tickY Green tickY
1975 Vaazhndhu Kaatukiren Green tickY Green tickY
1975 Avalukku Aayiram Kangal Green tickY Green tickY
1976 Vaazhvu En Pakkam Green tickY Green tickY
1976 Mogam Muppadhu Varusham Green tickY Green tickY
1977 Sonthamadi Nee Enakku Green tickY Green tickY
1977 Chakravarthi Green tickY Green tickY
1977 Sonnathai Seiven Green tickY Green tickY
1977 Aadu Puli Attam Green tickY Green tickY
1978 Mullum Malarum Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY
1978 Pagalil Oru Iravu Green tickY
1979 Paruvamazhai Green tickY Tamil Dubbed version of Madanolsavam
1979 Uthiripookkal Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Filmfare Award for Best Tamil Director
1980 Challenge Ramudu Green tickY
1980 Rishi Moolam Green tickY Green tickY
1980 Pootatha Pootukkal Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY
1980 Jhonny Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY
1980 Kaali Green tickY Green tickY
1980 Nenjathai Killathe Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY National Film Award for Best Feature Film in Tamil
1981 Nandu Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY
1982 Hitler Umanath Green tickY
1982 Metti Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY
1982 Azhagiya Kanney Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY
1984 Kai Kodukkum Kai Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY
1986 Kannukku Mai Ezhuthu Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY
1991 Thaiyalkaaran Green tickY Green tickY
1992 Naangal Green tickY
1992 Oor Panjayathu Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY
1999 Kallazhagar Green tickY
2006 Sasanam Green tickY Green tickY Green tickY

References[edit]

External links[edit]