Vishnuvardhan (actor)

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Vishnuvardhan 2.jpg
Born Sampath Kumar
(1950-09-18)18 September 1950
Mysore, Mysore State, India
Died 30 December 2009(2009-12-30) (aged 59)
Mysore, Karnataka, India
Other names Sahasasimha,[1] Abhinaya Bargava, Kotigobba, Kaladaiva, Bhavashilpi, Mysore Ratna,Abhinaya Rajadiraja, South Superstar, King of KFI.
Height 5 ft 7 in
Religion Brahmin, Hindu
Spouse(s) Bharathi (1979-2009) his death

Born as Sampath Kumar (Kannada:ಸಂಪತ್ ಕುಮಾರ್) (18 September 1950 – 30 December 2009), Dr. Vishnuvardhan (Kannada:ಡಾ ವಿಷ್ಣುವರ್ಧನ್) was a prominent Indian film actor. He was called The Phoenix of Indian Cinema.[2][3][4][5][6][7] He has acted in over 220 films including 200 Kannada, five Hindi, five Telugu, nine Malayalam and three Tamil films.[8] He was very instrumental in shaping the Kannada identity. He adopted the name Vishnuvardhan at the insistence of Puttanna Kanagal, who directed his maiden film, Naagarahaavu that gave him the recognition of the 'angry young man of Kannada cinema'. He proved to be extremely versatile by playing variety of roles, be it the character of an Action Star or The Romantic Hero, Comedy roles or the serious ones, name it and he has done it all. He could handle all the roles with great ease.[9][9][10][11][12]
A poll conducted in Karnataka by the very popular English News Channel CNN-IBN in 2008 revealed that 'Dr.Vishnuvardhan was the most popular star, the Kannada Film Industry has ever seen' and this was in the 36th year of Vishnu's career in the industry which proved that he rubbed shoulders with the new generation actors and still was considered as an actor who had no competition whatsoever.[13][14]
A road stretching 14.5 km from Banashankari Temple to Kengeri in Bengaluru has been named after the super star and it is the Longest Road in Asian Continent to be named after a celebrity.[15][16][17][18][19] He was a Martial Art expert and in an interview to The Hindu, he had said that it was the era of Bruce Lee and it was only Kamal Haasan and himself who had learnt Martial Arts in his generation.[20]
Dr.VIshnuvardhan is the first kannada actor to get temple constructed from his fans.[21]

Early life[edit]

Vishnuvardhan was born in Mysore to H. L.Narayanan Rao and Kamakshamma in a kannada Brahmin family. His father was an artist, music composer and a scriptwriter who was known for his collection of musical instruments. His sister Rama, was a Kathak dancer at the Mysore Palace. He had six siblings.He was educated first in Mysore's Gopalswamy School and then at Bangalore's Kannada Model High School. He attended high school and obtained a degree from National College, Basavanagudi, Bangalore.[22][23]


Vishnuvardhan started his career with the National Award-winning movie Vamshavruksha (1972) directed by Girish Karnad based on the novel written by S. L. Bhyrappa. His first lead role in Naagarahaavu, directed by Puttanna Kanagal and based on a novel by T. R. Subba Rao. It was the first movie in Kannada film history to complete 100 days in 3 main theatres of Bangalore. In his thirty-five-year career, he played a variety of roles in more than 220 films.

In Sahasa Simha, it was reported that he had done all his stunts himself without using any stunt-doubles.

While shooting for Muthina Haara, Vishnu performed a dangerous parachute dive without a double and narrowly escaped death. He ventured into parallel cinema and acted in movies like Harakeya Kuri (based on Chandrashekar Kambar's novel with same title).

Television career[edit]

He appeared on television for the first time in the 1980s. Shankar Nag directed Malgudi Days and introduced Vishnuvardhan as the main character Venkat Rao, in an episode called "Rupees Forty-five a Month". Here, his co-star was Gayatri Nag.


  • As an acknowledgement to his service to Indian cinema, the state government also decided to name its annual lifetime achievement award to long-serving film personalities after Vishnuvardhan, renaming it as the Karnataka State Dr. Vishnuvardhan Lifetime Achievement Award.[24]
  • He has appeared on postage stamps issued by the Government of India.[25][26]
  • The State Government has named various roads and parks in the capital city Bengaluru after him.[27] A park in Jayanagar, Bengaluru has also been named as 'Dr.Vishnuvardhan Park'.[28][29][30]
  • The government of Karnataka has also decided to build a film city in the name of Dr.Vishnuvardhan. It will be similar to the model of Ramoji Film City in Hyderabad. Sources indicate that once the film city comes up, all Kannada films related work will be done under a single roof.[31]
  • The Karnataka Assembly also showed respect to the Star by praying for his soul to rest in peace for a minutes time and after that the election of the Speaker was held under chaotic circumstances as the Opposition parties wanted the elections to be postponed due to this shocking and unexpected incident.[32][33]
  • There are also various statues erected in his honour, especially in Bengaluru. A 7 feet (2.1 m) high statue in Gowri Palya on 1 March 2012, Laggere on 4 March 2012, Kengeri on 9 October 2011, KP Agrahara in Vijayanagar on 11 March 2012 and in other places of Bengaluru and Karnataka were unveiled.[34][35]
  • Vishnuvardhan was cremated at the Ambhimaan Studios, in the outskirts of Bengaluru on 30 Dec 2009 with full state honors. Almost all the leading politicians and actors were present there.[36][37][38][39]
  • A 14.3 km-long stretch of road between the Banashankari Temple and Kengeri in Bengaluru has been named after the superstar and is the longest road in the Asian continent to be named after a celebrity.[15][16][17][18][19]
  • Vishnuvardhan's fans for whom he is a Demi-god have built a temple for him naming it as "Dr.Vishnuvardhan Mandir"[40]

Contribution to society[edit]

Dr.VIshnuvardhan started an organisation called Sneha Loka to promote harmony and to help during calamities like floods. He was heavily involved in many charitable causes, but took care not to publicise many of them. Dr.Vishnuvardhan was also known for his personal involvement in many charitable causes. He was a brand ambassador for Mysore's Vikram Hospital and took responsibility of the treatment of rural children from humble backgrounds suffering from heart ailments.He recently conducted a 'padayatra' to collect funds for the flood-affected people in the northern part of the state.Dr Vishnu and his wife Bharathi Vishnuvardhan had adopted Melukote town in Mandya district where he had dug borewells in the water-starved temple town. Many of his other charitable donations were revealed only when the beneficiaries came forward themselves and spoke about it.[41] On January 1, 2005,Dr.Vishnuvardhan,Cricketer Syed Kirmani and Shivram participate in a Cancer Awareness Walkathon organised by Bangalore Institute of Oncology (BIO) to commemorate its 15 years of public service in Bangalore on Sunday. The walkathon was followed by a friendly cricket match between Snehaloka and BIO.[42]

Association with S. P. Balasubrahmanyam[edit]

S. P. Balasubrahmanyam is record-holder for having sung more than 45,000 songs in various Indian languages including Kannada, Telugu, Tamil, Malayalam, and Hindi. SPB's voice perfectly suited Vishnuvardhan and people felt it was a perfect combination.[43] He started singing for Vishnuvardhan in the 1972 film Naagarahaavu. Balasubrahmanyam as music director, composed all the songs for Vishnuvardhan's film Sowbhagyalakshmi.vishnuwardhan never missed any of the birthdays of S. P. Balasubrahmanyam . In every film of the actor, he had to sing couple of songs and Vishnu would insist. Balasubrahmanyam has sung all the five songs in his last Kannada film. Aptharakshaka and was awarded the Best Playback Singer Filmfare Award for the song Gharane Ghara Gharane. He dedicated his award to Vishnuvardhan.. After Vishnuvardhan's death, Balasubrahmanyam paid tribute to him in musical nights and one such show happened in Bengaluru.[44]

Other collaborations[edit]

  • With Dwarakish: After a series of entry into films, Actor/Producer Dwarakish approached him with a project. Vishnu and Dwarakish acted together in several movies and the last one being Apthamithra that ran for a year. Vishnuvardhan-Dwarakish Starrer Singapoorinalli Raja Kulla was the first Kannada movie which was shot outside India. Dwarakish was the producer of these movies and the Vishnu-Dwarakish Jodi helped him establish his production unit. Their combination started in the year 1974 with the film Kalla Kulla directed by KSR Das produced by Dwarakish himself. After that, they acted together in many films like Galate Samsaara, Kittu Puttu, Singapore Nalli Raaja Kulla, Guru Shishyaru, Avala Hejje, Pedda Gedda, Indina Ramayana, Prachanda Kulla, Maduve Madu Thamashe Nodu mostly under his production. Vishnu insisted Dwarakish to direct films and henceforth Dwarakish became the director for films like Nee Bareda Kadambari, Nee thanda Kaanike starring the actor. Dwarakish, after the 1985 film Nee thanda kaanike chose to direct and produce films without the actor. He requested Vishnu to act in a film under his direction and production in 1993 film Rayaru Bandaru Mavana Manege. He tried entering politics and introducing his sons to the industry. He tried Shashikumar in a film named Hosa Kalla Hale Kulla. He was in debts and was in a situation of losing all his properties. He approached and requested him to act in his film Aaptha Mithra in 2004. Vishnu agreed and the film created records and ran for a whole year.
  • With Director Bhargava: The actor's combination with Director Bhargava was very well received by the audience and hence this combination ended up doing almost 24 films together. Their combination started in the year 1979 in the film Asaadhya Aliya and after that they made films like Guru Shishyaru, Avala Hejje, Pedda Gedda, Onde Guri, Gandugali Rama, Jeevana Chakra, Karna, Krishna Nee Begane Baaro, Soubhagyalakshmi, Karunamayi, Shubha Milana, Nammora Raja, Jananayaka, Krishna Rukmini, Hrudaya Geethe, Shiva Shankar, Mathe Haadithu Kogile, Jagadeka Veera, Raajadhiraaja, Nanna Shathru, Bangarada Kalasha, Janani Janmabhoomi and more. This was a milestone in Bhargava's lifetime too.
  • With Actor Suhasini Maniratnam: Vishnu-Suhasini Combination is considered as one of the best combinations of South India. Their films Bandhana directed by Rajendra Singh Babu and Suprabhatha directed by Dinesh Babu ran for a whole year in the theatres and created history. Muthina Haara, Himapatha, Hendthig Helthini, Maathaad Maathaadu Mallige, School Mater and others were the films they were seen in. This was a big break for Suhasini's career too since two out of the four film fare awards that she has won in Kannada is for films with the actor. They have been close friends from years. Suhasini was close to his family too. Suhasini, wife of India's greatest director Manirathnam, recently at a press meet in Bengaluru said she was all set to direct her first movie in Kannada. She also said that the actor and close friend Vishnu had always told her to take up direction and the actor who was never a producer had told her that he would produce the film.[45][46] "People who are close to me know I have a funny side. Vishnuji was one of those people. He was also great at comedy", is what Suhasini said.[47] She was also seen shedding tears in Bengaluru when her close friend died. In her interview with, she said "Working with an actor like Vishnuji was such a great pleasure because it's such a learning experience. He would take great pains to get into the skin oif the characters. I learnt so much from him, especially while working in Mathaad Mathaad Mallige. There are many unforgettable moments that I would always cherish while working with him like the way he handled the comedy sequences in a film like Hendthige Helthini, or his super cool reactions in Mathaad Mathaad Mallige".[48]
  • With Actor, MP Dr.Ambareesh : Vishnu & Ambareesh debuted together in Nagarahavu under Putanna's direction. From then they both have been larger than life friends. Though Ambareesh was a villain in many films after Naagarahavu and Vishnu was already a star, their friendship remained the same and even when Ambareesh rose to fame as a hero, though they were on two parallel tracks, they never considered each other as competition and neither did they have any ego problems. When Vishnu departed in 2009, Ambarish was seen handling every bit of his close friend's funeral. From coordinating with the stars, to coordinating with the government, from shifting the body to managing crowds, he did every thing that the Police and the Government had to do. At one point he even picked up the microphone in the funeral place and shouted at a few frenzied fans and took situation into control.[49] Ambareesh's wife and Vishnuvardhan's good friend, co-star Sumalatha Ambareesh says that she has never seen this kind of friendship in any other Industry between two actors in the peak who remained closest of closest friends throughout their life.[50] They went on to act in Snehitara sawaal,Maha Prachandaru & Avala Hejje in the 80"s. Again they came together in Diggajaru in 2000 and this film is remembered by both their fans as their Best. It also had the memorable hit "Kuchikku, Kuchikku", a song about friendship featuring the two.
  • With Actor Rajinikanth: Vishnuvardhan and rajinikanth has worked together in many movies such as Sahodarara Savaal, Kiladi Kittu, Galate Samsara, sri raghavendra, viduthalai. Paying tributes to Kannada film veteran Vishnuvardhan who had died, Tamil actor Rajinikanth said it was the late actor who encouraged him to take up initial offers in Tamil films, which subsequently paved the path for his stardom in Kollywood. Rajinikanth told reporters, “Once I got an offer from Tamil film producer and also from a Kannada producer simultaneously. I was in a dilemma, which offer to choose. It was Vishnu who advised me to take up the Tamil film offer.” “He advised me that I should achieve something there and should go there and excel,” he said. “I cannot explain the value of our friendship. Our friendship was one that could be enjoyed, not one that could be expressed in words,” said Rajinikanth. He called on Vishnuvardhan’s wife Bharati at her residence here and offered his condolences and recounted his close association with Vishnuvardhan. He also apologised for being unable to attend the funeral of his “old and dear” friend owing to his hectic schedule.[51]

As singer[edit]

He started singing in movies occasionally and later went on to singing devotional songs for albums. The first song he sang was in the movie Nagarahole. The first devotional album sung by him was on Lord Ayappa and the title of the album was Jyothiroopa Ayappa. His other albums were "Thayi Bhanashankari" (on goddess Banashankari) and Vishwapremi Ayappa. He also sang devotional songs on Dharmastala's Lord Manjunathaswamy, Malemadeshwara and Ranachandi Chamundi.

Some of his songs are:

  • "Hegiddharu Neene Chenna" (Sahasa Simha)
  • "Shashiya Kandu Moda Helithu" (Sirithanakke Savaal)
  • "Thuthu Anna Thinnoke" (Jimmi Gallu)
  • "Beda Annoro Unte" (Sididedda Sahodara)
  • "Kannadave Nammamma" (Mojugara Sogusugara)
  • "Abhimani Gale Nanna Pranaa" (Vishnu Sena)
  • "Ee Notake" (Naagarahole)
  • "Madilalli" (Kiladi Kittu)
  • "Aasegala THota" (Hanthakana Sanchu)
  • "Naguve Swarga" (Naaga Kaala Bhirava)
  • "Olavina jodi" (Kallu Veene Nudiyithu)
  • "Vayyari Nee" (Gandugali Rama)
  • "Savi Maathanu" (Chinnadantha Maga)
  • "Cheluvina Chenniga" (Rudra Naga)
  • "Muthe Maniye" (Khaidi)
  • "Nammora Beediyali" (Benki Birugali)
  • "Kannalli Nee Bandu" (Simha Gharjane)
  • "Kandaddu Kandahaage" (Huli Hejje)

Dr.Vishnuvardhan's Respect towards women[edit]

Vishnu never played a role that ridiculed or passed nasty comments on women. He always selected role like ideal husband and affectionate lover, who is ever ready to sacrifice everything for the sake of his sweetheart. His performance in films such as ‘Haalunda Tavaru’, ‘Bandhana’, ‘Muthina Haara’ and ‘Ee Bandhana’ made him the favourite hero for women audience. He was very angry when director Phani Ramachandra named his teleserial ‘Dharidra Lakshmiyaru,’ a few years ago. He contacted Ramachandra, asking him to change the title of the serial or shelve it. He was guide for many heroines like Jayaprada, Suhasini and Shruthi. A lesser known fact about Vishnu was his social service which he did not like to advertise. He silently helped those who came to him in need; actors, friends or strangers. He formed a club of his friends called ‘Snehaloka’ Karaoke Club through which he not only pursued his interest in music but also social service. The members collected and donated funds during natural calamities. Vishnu sponsored 10 major cardiac surgeries at Vikram Hospital in Mysore per year.[52]

Later years and death[edit]

On December 30, 2009, Vishnuvardhan died due to a massive cardiac arrest at King's Court Hotel in Mysore. He was survived by his wife, Bharathi Vishnuvardhan, and two adopted daughters, Keerthi and Chandana.

Fans came to pay tribute at the National College Grounds near Basavangudi, Bengaluru where his body was placed for public view. A grand procession arrangement was made to pay tribute to the actor. Both at the National College Grounds and during the procession, there were protests and acts of violence from some of the fans.[53]

Bharathi Vishnuvardhan appealed for calm on TV and said that her late husband was a peace-loving man and that fans should allow him to rest in peace. He was cremated with full state honours.[54][55]

Reactions to Vishnuvardhan's death[edit]

Bollywood actors Amitabh Bachchan and Shatrughan Sinha expressed their shock at Vishnuvardhan's death. Akshay Kumar who had worked with him in two films said “[...] he was so popular! Men, women and children came to him to be touched by him. He was like God. Newly-born babies were named after him." and called Vishnuvardhan "disciplined, focused and hard working" as well as "warm and very friendly.”[56] Aamir Khan said that he was shocked to hear the news, and expressed his condolences to Vishnuvardhan's family[57]

The Tamil actor Rajinikanth expressed his gratitude to Vishnuvardhan for helping him towards becoming a star, and talked about the strong friendship they had enjoyed,[58][59][60][61] and the actor and politician Chiranjeevi said "The suddenness of Vishnuji's death has come as a shock. May God give his family the courage, strength and support".[62]

Cricketer Anil Kumble said that he had watched Vishnuvardhan's films while growing up, and referred to the actor's death as "the end of an era"[63]

Celebrity friends of the actor who flew down from neighboring states included Prakash Rai, Suhasini Maniratnam, Dr.S. P. Balasubrahmanyam, Tamil actors Sarath Kumar, Raadhika Sarathkumar, and P.Vasu. Other actors including Mammooty, Mohanlal, Kamal Hassan, Dr.B Saroja Devi and politicians like B. S. Yeddyurappa, R. Ashok, H. D. Kumaraswamy, H. D. Deve Gowda, Governor of Karnataka state Hansraj Bhardwaj offered condolences[citation needed]

Personal life[edit]

Vishnuvardhan married actress Dr.Bharathi Vishnuvardhan on February 17, 1975 in Bangalore. They have 2 children, Keerthi and Chandana.[64] They reside in Bengaluru's Jayanagar 4th Block in their bungalow. Vishnuvardhan father Narayana Rao was musician.


The following is a list of Vishnuvardhan's films.[8]

Year Film Role Director Notes
1972 Vamshavruksha Prithvi Girish Karnad Vishnuvardhan's first film
Naagarahaavu Ramachari Puttanna Kanagal First film in India with slow-motion recording of a song, He won Film fare award and state award
1973 Seethe Alla Savithri
Mane Belagida Sose Shrikanth
Gandhada Gudi Anand Vijay Villainous role
1974 Bhootayyana Maga Ayyu Gulla Siddalingaiah First Kannada film shot entirely outside the studio
Professor Huchuraya M. R. Vittal
Anna Attige M. R. Vittal
1975 Devara Gudi R. Ramamurthy Remake of Tamil Movie Pugutha Veedu
Koodi Balona M. R. Vittal
Kalla Kulla Mahesh (Kalla) K. S. R. Das
Bhagya Jyothi K. S. L. Swamy
Nagakanye Rajendra Singh Babu
Onde Roopa Eradu Guna A. M. Samiullah Double role
1976 Devaru Kotta Vara R. Ramamurthy
Hosilu Mettida Hennu V. T. Thyagarajan
Makkala Bhagya K. S. L. Swamy
Bangarada Gudi K. S. R. Das
1977 Bayasade Banda Bhagya Ramu R. Ramamurthy
Sose Tanda Soubhagya Shekhara A. V. Sheshgiri Rao First CinemaScope film of Kannada
Nagarahole Rajendra Singh Babu
Chinna Ninna Muddaduve A. M. Samiullah
Shrimanthana Magalu A. V. Sheshgiri Rao
Sahodarara Savaal K. S. R. Das
Shani Prabhava Rathnakar-Madhu
Galate Samsara C. V. Rajendran
Kittu Puttu Kittu C. V. Rajendran
1978 Hombisilu Dr. Nataraj Geetapriya
Sandharbha Gaurisundar
Kiladi Kittu Rajendra Singh Babu
Vamshajyothi A. Bhimsingh
Muyyi Ge Muyyi Y. R. Swamy
Siritanakke Savaal T. R. Ramanna
Prathima T. R. Ramanna
Nanna Prayaschita Ugranarasimha
Sneha Sedu V. Madhusudhan Rao
Kiladi Jodi Rajendra Singh Babu
Vasanth Lakshmi A. V. Sheshgiri Rao
Amarnath Manimurugan
Bhale Huduga Ravi T. R. Ramanna
Madhura Sangama T. P. Venugopal
Singaporalli Raja Kulla Raja C. V. Rajendran
1979 Asadhya Aliya Bhargava
Vijaya Vikram V. Somashekar Double role
Naniruvude Ninagagi A. V. Sheshgiri Rao
Manini K. S. Sethumanadhavan
Nentaro Gantu Kallaro A. V. Sheshgiri Rao
1980 Nanna Rosha Nooru Varusha Joe Simon
Rama Parushurama Vijay
Kalinga V. Somashekar Vishnuvardhan's 50th film
Hanthakana Sanchu B. Kishan
Makkala Sainya Lakshmi
Biligiriya Banadalli Siddalingaiah
Simha Jodi Joe Simon
Rahasya Rathri M. S. Kumar
Bangaradha Jinke T. S. Nagabharana
Driver Hanumanthu K. S. L. Swamy
1981 Mane Mane Kathe Rajachandra
Naaga kala Bhairava Tiptur Raghu
Mahaprachandaru Joesimon
Guru Shishyaru H.R. Bhargava
Snehitara Savaal K. S. R. Das
Avala Hejje Bhargava
Preetisi Nodu Geetapriya
1982 Pedda Gedda Bhargava Cameo appearance
Sahasa Simha Joesimon
Karmika Kallanalla K. S. R. Das
Oorige Upakari Joesimon
Jimmy Gallu Jimmi K. S. L. Swamy
Suvarna Sethuve Geetapriya
Onde Guri Bhargava
Kallu Veene Nudiyithu Tiptur Raghu
1983 Sididedda Sahodara Joesimon Double role
Muthaide Bhagya Chandrashekar Sharma
Gandharva Giri Dhananjaya
Gandugali Rama Bhargava
Chinnadantha Maga K. S. R. Das
Simha Garjane S. V. Chandrashekar
Prachanda Kulla P. S. Prakash
1984 Rudranaga Manimurugan
Khaidi K. S. R. Das
Benki Birugali Tiptur Raghu
Indina Ramayana Rajachandra
Bandhana Dr. Harish Rajendra Singh Babu
Huli Hejje Soma K. S. L. Swamy
Chanakya V. Somashekar
Aaradhane Deepak Jalraj
Madhuve Madu Tamashe Nodu Sathya
1985 Jeevana Chakra Bhargava
Karthavya Inspector Vijay K. S. R. Das
Mahapurusha Joesimon
Veeradhi Veera Vijay
Nee Bareda Kadambari Dwarakish
Mareyada Manikya Vijay
Nanna Prathigne K. S. R. Das
Nee Thanda Kanike Ravi Dwarakish
1986 Karna Bhargava
Kathanayaka Ranga P. Vasu
Ee Jeeva Ninagagi V. Somashekar
Sathya Jyothi K. Rangarajan Vishnuvardhan's 100th film
Krishna Nee Begane Baro Bhargava
Malaya Marutha Vishwanatha Lalitha Ravi
1987 Premaloka Ravichandran Guest appearance
Saubhagyalakshmi Bhargava
Karunamayi Raja Bhargava
Jayasimha Inspector Jayasihma P. Vasu
Aaseya Bhale Rajkishore
Jeevana Jyothi Ravi P. Vasu
Shubhamilana Bhargava
Sathyam Shivam Sundaram K. S. R. Das Triple role
1988 31 December Manobala
Olavina Aasare K. V. Jayaram
Nammora Raja Bhargava
Jananayaka Bhargava
Suprabhatha Vijay Kumar Dinesh Babu
Krishna Rukmini Bhargava
Dada P. Vasu Double role
Mithileya Seetheyaru K. S. L. Swamy
1989 Ondhagi Baalu K. S. R. Das
Hrudaya Geethe Bhargava
Rudra K. S. R. Das
Deva Deva Vijay Later remade in Tamil as Dharma Dorai, starring Rajinikanth in lead role
Doctor Krishna Dr. Krishna Phani Ramachandra
1990 Shiva Shankar Shiva/ Shankara Bhargava Double role
Muthina Haara Rajendra Singh Babu Vishnuvardhan's 125th film
Mathe Haditu Kogile Bhargava
1991 Lion Jagapathi Rao Om Sai Prakash Dr.Vishnuvardhan won a state award
Double role
Neenu Nakkare Haalu Sakkare Dhore-Bhagwan
Jagadeka Veera Bhargava
Police Mathu Dada Inspector Dhanush/ Vishnu Dada (Vishnu Pratap) Thulsi-Shyam Double role
1992 Rajadhi Raja Bhargava
Ravivarma Joesimon
Harikeya Kuri K. S. L. Swamy
Nanna Shatru Ashok Bhargava
1993 Sangharsha Sunil Kumar Desai
Vyshakada Dinagalu Katte Ramachandra
Naanendu Nimmavane Phani Ramachandra
Rayaru Bandaru Mavana Manege Dwarakish Remake of Malayalam film Chithram
Vishnu Vijaya Keshu
ManiKantana Mahime K. Shankar
1994 Nishkarsha Sunil Kumar Desai
Time Bomb Joesimon
Kunthi Putra Vijay
Samrat Naganna
Mahakshathriya Rajendra Singh Babu
1995 Halunda Thavaru D. Rajendra Babu
Kiladigalu Dwarakish Double role
Kona Edaithe Bharavi
Yamakinkara Prabahakar
Deerga Sumangali Adithya D. Rajendra Babu
Bangarada Kalasa Bhargava
Thumbida Mane Umesh
Karulina Kudi V. P. Sarathy
Himapatha Aravind Rajendra Singh Babu
1996 Mojugara Sogasugara Vijay Vishnuvardhan's 150th film
Double role
Appaji D. Rajendra Babu
Hello Daddy Naganna
Karnataka Suputhra Vijay
Dhani Balajisingh Babu
Jeevanadhi D. Rajendra Babu
Balina Jyothi Dwarakish
1997 Mangalasoothra Balajisingh Babu
Ellaranthalla Nanna Ganda Umesh
Shruthi Hakida Hejje Dwarakish
Janani Janma Bhoomi Dr. Yeshwanth Bhargava
Laali Dinesh Babu State Award for Best Film; Vishnuvardhan received the State Award for Best Actor.
1998 Nishyabda Dinesh Babu
Yaare Neenu Cheluve Vishnu (Auto driver) D. Rajendra Babu Remake of Kadhal Kottai
Guest appearance
Simhada Guri M. Narayan Rao
Hendithge Helthini Dinesh Babu
1999 Veerappa Nayaka S. Narayan
Habba D. Rajendra Babu
Surya Vamsha Satya Murthy and Kanaka Murthy S. Narayan Remake of Suryavamsam
Double role
Premotsava Dinesh Babu
2000 Soorappa Naganna Vishnuvardhan's 175th film, Remake of Marumalarchi
Deepavali Dinesh Babu
Nanna Hendthi Chennagiddale Dinesh Babu
Yejamana Shankara / Ganesha Seshadri and Radha Bharathi Remake of Vaanathaipola
Double role
2001 Diggajaru Dodda / Chikka D. Rajendra Babu Remake of Tamil film Natpukkaga
Double role
Kotigobba Nanjunda (Auto driver)/ Jayasimha (Underworld Don) Naganna Remake of Tamil movie Baashha (1995)
2002 Parva Sagar Sunil Kumar Desai
Jamindaru Bettappa and Biligiri S. Narayan Double role
Simhadriya Simha S. Narayan Remake of Tamil film Nattamai
Triple role
2003 Raja Narasimha Raja Narasimha Muthyalu Subaiah
Hrudayavantha P. Vasu
2004 Kadamba Madhukeshwar Kadamba Suresh Krishna
Apthamitra Dr. Vijay P. Vasu Remake of Malayalam film Manichitrathazhu
Later remade in Tamil as Chandramukhi, starring Rajinikanth in lead role
Sahukara Om Prakash Remake of Tamil film Mutthu
'Jyeshtha Suresh Krishna Remake of Malayalam film Valliettan
2005 Varsha S. Narayan Remake of Malayalam film Hitler
Vishnu Sena Professor Jayasimha Naganna Remake of Tamil film Ramana
2006 Neenello Naanalle Dinesh Baboo Remake of Telugu film Nuvvostanante Nenoddantana
Sirivantha S. Narayan Remake of Telugu film Aa naluguru
2007 Ekadantha Vijay Sachin
No 73, Shanthi Nivasa Sudeep Guest appearance
Maathaad Maathaadu Mallige Hoovaiah Nagathihalli Chandrashekar
Ee Bandhana Harish Raj Vijayalakshmi Singh
Kshana Kshana DCP Vishnu Sunil Kumar Desai Special appearance
2009 Nam Yajamanru Shashank T. S. Nagabharana
Bellary Naga Nagamanikya Dinesh Babu Remake of Malayalam film Rajamanikyam
2010 School Master Jagannath Dinesh Babu
Posthumous film
Aptharakshaka Dr. Vijay P. Vasu
Posthumous film – Vishnuvardhan's 200th Kannada film

Filmography in other languages[edit]





  • Okkadu Chaalu (1996)
  • Pillade Bomma
  • Sardar Dharmanna
  • Kankanam
  • Muggu Kathanayakalu
  • Lakshmi Nirdushi


Filmfare Awards South

Filmfare Award for Best Kannada Actor 7 times:[65][66][67]

Karnataka State Film Awards

Karnataka State Film Awards for the Best Actor Category: Eight Times[72][73][74]

Other awards
  • Honorary Doctorate awarded by Bangalore University in 2005
  • Aragini Reader's Award
  • Cinema Express Awards
  • Suvarna Lifetime Achievement Award for Contribution To Kannada Cinema 2008[76]
  • Tarangini Berkley Award
  • Indira Pratishtana National Award
  • Kaladevi Award (Chennai)[77]
  • Suvarna Film Award for Favorite Hero 2011[76]
  • Madras Films Association Award[78]
  • Kerala Cultural And Art Award[79]
  • Rajyotsava Award[80]
  • R.N.R Award[81]
  • Videocon Suprabhata Film Viewers Award[82]


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  28. ^ "Dr. Vishnuvardhan". Deccan Chronicle. 18 December 2012. Retrieved 28 May 2013. 
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  30. ^ "Road and park to be named after Dr.Vishnuvardhan". Retrieved 28 May 2013. [unreliable source?]
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  34. ^ by: Rajendra (3 March 2012). "ಲಾಠಿ ಚಾರ್ಚ್ ನಡುವೆ ಡಾ.ವಿಷ್ಣು ಪುತ್ಥಳಿ ಅನಾವರಣ- 03 dr vishnuvardhan statue gowri palya". Oneindia Entertainment. Retrieved 28 May 2013. 
  35. ^ Hooli, Shekhar (7 April 2011). "Dr. Vishnuvardhan's statue unveiled by Dwarakish". Oneindia Entertainment. Retrieved 28 May 2013. 
  36. ^ "Full state honors for Vishnuvardhan – Tamil Movie News – Vishnuvardhan | Chandana". 31 December 2009. Retrieved 28 May 2013. 
  37. ^ "Dr Vishnuvardhan to be cremated with state honours". 30 December 2009. 
  38. ^ (1 January 2010). "Dr Vishnuvardhan cremated – Sandalwood News & Gossips". 
  39. ^ "'Apthamithra' Dr Vishnu cremated! – Kannada Movie News". 31 December 2009. 
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  44. ^ "Vishnu still tells me what to do". Bangalore Mirror. 
  45. ^ "Suhasini to direct Kannada film! – Telugu Movie News". 30 May 2009. 
  46. ^ "Suhasini to direct Kannada movie". 
  47. ^ SHARADHA SRINIDHI, TNN (9 July 2010). "Suhasini not directing with Ash!". The Times of India. 
  48. ^ "Suhasini on her last movie with the late Kannada actor". 20 January 2010. 
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  51. ^ "Vishnuvardhan helped me to get stardom: Rajinikanth". The Hindu (Chennai, India). 7 January 2010. 
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  53. ^ "Protests mar Vishnuvardhan's state funeral". Oneindia Entertainment. 30 December 2009. 
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  75. ^ Written by: By: Shekhar H Hooli (12 January 2009). "Gulabi Talkies bags 3 Karnataka State Film Awards". Oneindia Entertainment. 
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  77. ^ Kannada Cinema's Greatest Actor. Retrieved 7 January 2012.
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External links[edit]