|Directed by||M. Bhaskar|
|Written by||Kalaignanam (Dialogues)|
|Screenplay by||Madurai Thirumaran|
|Cinematography||K. S. Bhaskar Rao|
|Edited by||M. Vellaisamy|
|8 June 1978|
Bairavi is a 1978 Tamil-language Indian drama film directed by M. Bhaskar, starring Rajinikanth in the lead role. It was Rajinikanth's first movie as a solo hero in Tamil cinema. He was also given the "Superstar" title through this film. The film stars Sripriya as the female lead and Geetha playing the title role as Rajini's sister. Geetha was introduced in this film. Sreekanth played the role of the main villain. Malayalam actor Sudheer played Bairavi's step brother, while Manorama and Suruli Rajan played other major roles.
Mookaiyah (Rajinikanth) and his sister Bairavi (Geetha) are the children of a drunkard (T. K. Ramachandran). They are separated after Bhairavi gets lost in an accident. Following this, Mookaiyah becomes a servant of a local landlord (Sreekanth). Mookaiyah is a loyal servant and does whatever is asked of him. The landlord, Rajalingam (Sreekanth), forces Mookaiyah to abduct a young girl from a neighboring village, Bhagyam (Geetha). Rajalingam rapes her in the absence of Mookaiyah. Maanikam, Bhagyam's adopted brother, finds to know about the incident. When the police investigate Maanikam, Mookaiyah discovers that Bhagyam is his long-lost sister (Bairavi). Then he immediately approaches Rajalingam and forces him to marry Bairavi; he was not ready to accept it at first but after a while he promises to Mookaiyah that he will marry Bairavi. As Mookaiyah was the person who abducted Bairavi, the police suspect that he is the culprit, comes to Rajalingam's house to know about Mookaiyah. Rajalingam also alleges to Police that Mookaiyah only raped Bairavi. The police therefore arrest Mookaiyah, based on the statement of Rajalingam. Meanwhile, Rajalingam plans to kill Bairavi when she was in an unconscious state in hospital. If Bairavi become conscious and gives a statement to the police then he will definitely be prone to punishment, so he kills her. After knowing about his adopted sister's murder, Maanikam vows to take revenge on Mookaiyah, whom he believes to be responsible for Bairavi's death. Meanwhile, Mookaiyah escapes from jail knowing about the incident. He then sets out to kill the landlord in revenge for his sister's death.
- Rajinikanth as Mookaiyah
- Sripriya as Pavunu
- Y. Vijaya as Leela
- Sreekanth as Rajalingam
- Sudheer as Manicam
- Geetha as Bairavi
- T. K. Ramachandran as father of Mookaiyah and Bairavi
- Suruli Rajan as Pannai
- V. K. Ramasamy as Meenatchi's father
- Manorama as Meenatchi
- K. Natraj as Sandiyar
Kalaignanam who was impressed with Rajini's dedication in Aarupushpangal, went straight ahead casting Rajini in lead role for Bhairavi. Director Oscar Movies M Baskar, having faith in Rajini to pull the crowds as hero. Initially, Devar agreed to give financial support for Bhairavi but when he heard Rajini is the lead actor, he withdrew the support and advised Kalaignanam to stop the movie or change the actor and questioned him for choosing a villain in the lead role and hero as villain (Srikanth was acting as hero those days) and he assured that it will be a huge loss. Kalaignanam approached Muthuraman to play negative role but he refused to portray a negative character, Srikanth was finally selected for the role. M. Bhaskar, former assistant of C. V. Sridhar was chosen to direct the film.
A cutout of Rajinikanth with the height of 35 feet was built in Plaza Theatre. As per Kollywood grapevine, it was Kalaipuli Thanu, then a leading distributor, who first christened Rajnikanth the ‘Superstar’. Thanu re-released Bhairavi (1978) two years after its initial release by putting up a 35-ft cut-out of Rajinikanth with the writing ‘Superstar’ in front of the Plaza theatre (now defunct) next to Cosmopolitan Club. The film was dubbed into Telugu and released as Bhairavi.
|Film score by|
The soundtrack and background score was composed by Ilaiyaraaja.
All tracks written by Kannadasan, and 'Pulavar' Chidambaranathan.
|1.||"Kattapulle"||T. M. Soundararajan, S. Janaki||4:11|
|2.||"Nandooruthu"||T. M. Soundararajan||4:41|
|3.||"Oru Padhiyil"||S. Janaki||3:56|
|4.||"Yezhukadal Nayakiye"||S. Janaki & Chorus||4:33|
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- "Superstar Rajinikanth's biography : Rajini News – India Today". India Today. 10 September 2010. Retrieved 3 December 2011.
- "Think you know Rajnikanth? Take this quiz! – Rediff.com Movies". Movies.rediff.com. 28 September 2010. Retrieved 30 November 2011.
- "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 18 March 2013. Retrieved 12 February 2014.CS1 maint: Archived copy as title (link)
- Ethiraj, Gopal. "Sunday Celebrity: Rajini is simple, stylish, spiritual, that explains his uniqueness". Asian Tribune. Retrieved 3 December 2011.