K. Balaji

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K. Balaji
Balajisir.jpg
Born (1934-08-05)5 August 1934
Died 2 May 2009(2009-05-02) (aged 74) [1]
Chennai, Tamil Nadu, India
Cause of death
Renal failure[2]
Residence Chennai, Tamil Nadu, India
Nationality Indian
Occupation Film actor, producer
Years active 1951–2009
Known for Billa (1980) - Producer
Religion Hindu[3]
Spouse(s) Anandavally (died in 1995)
Children Suresh Balaje
Sujatha
Suchitra Mohanlal
Relatives

K. Balaji (5 August 1934 – 2 May 2009) was a South Indian producer and actor whose work included Rajinikanth' s Billa and Kamal Haasan' s Vazhvey Maayam.

Early life[edit]

Balaji was born in a prominent Tamil Brahmin (Iyengar) family and was the grandson of a very prominent colonial era advocate T. Rangachari. He wandered into films after developing a taste for acting by performing the odd school play and amateur theatre shows.[4]

Career[edit]

His quest for a space in showbiz led Balaji to the office of S. S. Vasan, then owner of Gemini Studios in 1951. Vasan was not very keen to work with a newcomer but gave him a minor role in Avvaiyar, in which he played Hindu god Muruga.[5]

Slowly he managed to land meatier roles and was featured as a male lead in a few films.

Balaji soon understood he was better off playing a villain or the hero's understudy with a negative angle in films that included Padithaal Mattum Podhumaa, Bale Pandiya and Thillana Mohanambal.

Even as the career was taking shape, he was hired as a manager in Narasu Studios in the southwest suburbs.

In that capacity, he discovered his true calling in the 1960s after coming into contact with top Hindi actors such as Ashok Kumar, Dilip Kumar and Tamil stars Sivaji Ganesan and Gemini Ganesan and actress Savithri, who advised him to remake Hindi hits into Tamil with leading actors.

Since the 1960s, all the top Hindi blockbusters such as Dushman (1971) starring Rajesh Khanna, Amitabh Bachchan's Deewar (1975) and Namak Haraam (1973) were remade in Tamil by Balaji, who always used top stars as his male leads like late Sivaji Ganeshan and thespians Rajnikanth and Kamal Hasan. He founded Sujatha Cine Arts in 1966. He was also the founder of Sujatha Recording Studio, where sound recordings for most of the big-budget movies of the 1980s and '90s were done.[6]

Family[edit]

He had three children — Suresh Balaje, Sujatha and Suchitra Mohanlal. Malayalam superstar Mohanlal is his son-in-law. His wife Anandavally died in 1995. He was also the grandfather of Pranav Mohanlal and Sooraj Balaji. Famous comedian Y.G Mahendra is his nephew through his sister Mrs. Rajalakshmi Parthasarathy

Death[edit]

Balaji died on 2 May 2009 evening due to multiple organ and renal failure. He had been hospitalised for over a month.

Filmography[edit]

As Producer[edit]

Filmography as Producer
Year Film Notes
Manavia Manithanin Manikam
Sagothari
Padithal Mattum Pothuma
Vasantha Maligai
Billa
Pattanathil Putham
Enga Mamma
Kandan Karunai
1979 Amar Deep Hindi film

As Actor[edit]

Acting Filmography
Year Film Character/Role Notes
1964 School Master Murali Malayalam film
1964 Atom Bomb Kochuraghavan Pillai Malayalam film
1967 Iruttinte Athmavu Chandran Malayalam film
1967 Adhey Kangal doctor Tamil film
1968 Ragini Malayalam film
1975 Swamy Ayyappan Malayalam film
1979 Surakshaa Doctor Shiva Hindi film
1979 Amar Deep Guest Appearance Hindi film
1983 Sneha Bandham Malayalam film

References[edit]

External links[edit]