B. R. Vijayalakshmi

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B. R. Vijayalakshmi
Occupation(s)Cinematographer, screenwriter, director
SpouseS. Sunil Kumar

B. R. Vijayalakshmi is an Indian cinematographer.

Early life[edit]

She is the daughter of veteran legendary film director and producer B. R. Panthulu.[1][2]

He died while she was in college. She decided to devote herself to cinema.


She worked as an interior designer before entering into films.

She started her career as an assistant to cinematographer Ashok Kumar who convinced her to leave film school to work as a camera assistant.[2][3] She worked for Kumar on the 1980 Tamil film Nenjathai Killathe and continued for nearly 30 films over the next three years.[1][4] During this time she did "Clash work" for films such as Kai Kodukkum Kai (1984) and Pillai Nila (1985).[4]

Her feature film debut came in 1985 with the Tamil film Chinna Veedu.[2] Known as Asia's first woman cinematographer, Vijayalakshmi has worked in 22 feature films[1][4][5] between 1985 and 1995. Her films included Aruvadai Naal (1986), Sirai Paravai (1987) and Iniya Uravu Poothathu (1987) for directors including C. V. Sridhar and G. M. Kumar. She wrote the script for Sangeeth Sivan's Malayalam film Daddy (1992). In 1995, she made her directorial debut through Paattu Padava for which she wrote the script and handled the cinematography.[6][7] The film was screened at the International Film Festival of India in 1996 and it was known for its songs by Ilaiyaraaja.[3]

In addition to her film career, she worked on many television series including My Dear Boodham (My Dear Ddevil), Velan, and Raja Rajeswari.

She is the first to have brought computer graphics to Tamil TV shows. She has done other south Indian soap operas such as Athipookkal Valli. After her wedding she left films and entered television.[3] Children's serial Vasantham Colony was her first attempt at TV.[1] Maya Machindra (Vijay TV) and Velan (Sun TV) are among the other prominent television series that she has worked on.[6]

She was appointed as the creative head of Saregama, an Indian music company. In September 2005, she became the business head of the TV Software Division of the company.[5] Saregama later moved into the manufacturing and sales of radio-like MP3 players called caravona.

Personal life[edit]

Her brother B.R. Ravishankar is a film-maker in Kannada cinema.[1][4] He is an IIT graduate. He entered cinema after the death of his father.

She is a friend of actress/film maker Suhasini since childhood. Manirathnam was a close teenage friend of B.R.Ravi (Vijayalakshmi's brother) which led to Suhasini-Manirthnam's romantic marriage.

Vijayalakshmi married Sunil Kumar, a sound recordist and has a son with him.

Partial filmography[edit]

As cinematographer[edit]

As writer[edit]

As director[edit]


  • velan (2002)
  • maya machinthra (2003)


  1. ^ a b c d e "An Interview with B.R. Vijayalakshmi (Cinematographer)". Chennai Online. January 2004. Archived from the original on 31 January 2004. Retrieved 16 May 2015.
  2. ^ a b c "பெண்ணென்று என்னை தனிமைப்படுத்தி கொள்வதில்லை". Kalki (in Tamil). 5 March 1995. pp. 10–13.
  3. ^ a b c Khajane, Muralidhara (25 August 2011). "The lens view". The Hindu. Retrieved 9 November 2014.
  4. ^ a b c d ராஜா, செந்தில் நாதன். "உதிர்ந்தது ஓர் உதிரிப் பூ!". Cinema Express (in Tamil). Archived from the original on 3 March 2016. Retrieved 18 November 2014.
  5. ^ a b Umashanker, Sudha (13 June 2006). "As candid as her lens". The Hindu. Retrieved 9 November 2014.
  6. ^ a b Rangarajan, Malathi (27 March 2000). "Success for the asking". The Hindu. Archived from the original on 9 November 2014. Retrieved 9 November 2014.
  7. ^ Rangarajan, Malathi (2 May 2002). "A winning combination". The Hindu. Archived from the original on 28 September 2002. Retrieved 9 November 2014.