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Chatriyan poster.jpg
Directed byK. Subash
Written byA. Varunan
Screenplay byMani Ratnam
Story byMani Ratnam
Produced byMani Ratnam
S. Sriram
CinematographyY. N. Murali
Edited byRaghu
Music byIlaiyaraaja
Distributed byAalayam Productions
Release date
  • 17 October 1990 (1990-10-17)
Running time
130 minutes

Chatriyan (transl.The Warrior) is a 1990 Indian Tamil-language crime drama film, written and produced by Mani Ratnam under Aalayam Productions. The film was directed by K. Subash, an assistant of Mani Ratnam.[1] The film stars Vijayakanth, Bhanupriya and Thilakan, while Revathi made a guest appearance as Vijayakanth's wife.[2] The film has Vijayakanth playing Selvam, an honest cop and Thilakan as Annachi, a corrupt politician and mobster in the main villain role.

This film ran more than 150 days in some theatres and was declared a blockbuster at the box office. The film is one of the biggest hit films of the early 1990s and has attained cult status.[3][4] It was also dubbed into Telugu as Kshatriyudu.[5] The film features a highly acclaimed soundtrack and background score composed by Ilaiyaraaja. The 2016 film Theri was reported to be based on this movie.[6][7]


ACP Panneer Selvam aka Sathriyan (Vijayakanth), an honest cop, gathers enough evidence against a local goon named Arumai Nayagam aka Annachi (Thilakan). Annachi is sent to prison. He avenges his arrest by killing Sathriyan's wife Jaya (Revathi). Since then, Sathriyan quits the police force and takes care of his children, renting an apartment owned by V. K. Ramaswamy. Banu (Bhanupriya), the apartment owner's granddaughter, gets introduced to Sathriyan's children and starts mingling with them, eventually falling in love with Sathriyan. Meanwhile, Annachi is released from prison and realizes that he does not carry the same respect as he used to before going to jail. Annachi challenges Sathriyan to join the police and fight him again. Sathriyan initially rejects the offer. Annachi tries to provoke Sathriyan by attacking his home and son. Out of frustration over his son's attack, Sathriyan joins the police and fights Annachi. Sathriyan's fight against Annachi forms the rest of the plot.


  • Vijayakanth as ACP Panneer Selvam, a juvenile prisoner who is raised by a short-tempered police officer into an aggressive and ruthless police officer
  • Bhanupriya as Banu, a young woman who despite initially being irritated by Selvam falls in love with the latter
  • Revathi as Jaya, Selvam's wife who gets killed in a blast meant for him (Guest appearance)
  • V. K. Ramasamy as Banu's grandfather and owner of Selvam's house
  • Thilakan as Arumai Nayagam (Annachi), an influential criminal who is humiliated and jailed by Selvam.
  • A. V. Ramanan as Police Officer
  • Vijayakumar as Selvam's godfather and guardian who raises him after he escapes from the juvenile home to kill those who are responsible for his parents' death
  • Delhi Ganesh as Jaya's father
  • Ajay Rathnam as John Swaminathan
  • Veeraraghavan
  • Kutty Padmini
  • Baby Aarthi as Preethi
  • Master Vishnuvardhan as Young Panneer Selvam


Soundtrack album by
GenreFeature film soundtrack

The music was scored by Ilaiyaraaja, with lyrics written by Vaali. Reportedly, the songs of this film were composed in just one and a half hours by Ilaiyaraaja.[8] The song "Maalayil Yaaro" was hugely popular and was set in Suddhadhanyasi raga.[9]

Track listing

No. Song Singers(s) Lyrics(s) Length (m:ss)
1 "Maalayil Yaro Manathodu" Swarnalatha Vaali 05:31
2 "Pootukkal Pottalum" S. Janaki 04:58
3 "Yaaru Pottadhu" S. Janaki, Yuvan Shankar Raja 04:40


No Song Singer(s) Lyrics(s)
1 "Evaru Vesiri" K. S. Chithra Rajasri
2 "Paataga Naalo" K. S. Chithra
3 "Vaddhanna Vasthundhi" K. S. Chithra


Chathriyan was released on 17 October 1990 alongside other major releases including Kamal Hassan's Michael Madana Kama Rajan , Sathyaraj's Mallu Vetti Minor , Bhagyaraj's Avasara Police 100 , Murali's Sirayil Sila Raagangal , Vikram's En Kadhal Kanmani , Nizhalgal Ravi's Amman Kovil Thiruvizha and Ramarajan's Pudhupaattu. Raj Tilak's 60 Naal 60 Nimidham and Murali's Puthiya Kaatru were other minor releases. The film topped the Chennai box office on its opening weekend with 12 lakh distributor share.[10]


  1. ^
  2. ^ "Sathriyan Cast and Crew | Star Cast | Tamil Movie | Sathriyan Actor | Actress | Director | Music |". 17 October 1990. Archived from the original on 13 July 2012. Retrieved 13 June 2011.
  3. ^ "Vijayakanth as Vijayakanth - Tamil Movie News". IndiaGlitz. Retrieved 13 June 2011.
  4. ^ "Filmography of chatriyan". 17 October 1990. Retrieved 13 June 2011.
  5. ^
  6. ^ "Before Thalapathy 63: The films Atlee has been accused of plagiarising".
  7. ^ "Dormant Volcanoes, Duality and the Undeniable Mass Appeal of the 'Baasha Formula'". 16 February 2021.
  8. ^ "Find Tamil Movie Sathriyan, Sathriyan Reviews, Expert Review and Casts". 17 October 1990. Archived from the original on 1 February 2010. Retrieved 13 June 2011.
  9. ^ Mani, Charulatha (9 December 2011). "A Raga's Journey — Soulful Suddhadhanyasi". The Hindu. ISSN 0971-751X. Retrieved 9 February 2021.
  10. ^ "Chatriyan on Twitter".

External links[edit]