Julie Ganapathi

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Julie Ganapathi
Julie Ganapathi.JPG
Promotional image
Directed byBalu Mahendra
Screenplay byBalu Mahendra
Based onMisery
by Stephen King
Produced byV. Gnanavelu
V. Jayaprakash
CinematographyBalu Mahendra
Edited byBalu Mahendra
Music byIlaiyaraaja
GJ Cinemaa
Release date
  • 14 February 2003 (2003-02-14)

Julie Ganapathi is a 2003 Indian Tamil-language psychological thriller film written, photographed, edited and directed by Balu Mahendra,[1] starring Saritha, Jayaram and Ramya Krishnan. The film is based on the 1987 Stephen King novel Misery. Featuring music composed by Ilaiyaraaja, the film opened to positive reviews in February 2003.[2][3]


Julie Ganapathi (Saritha) is a staunch fan of a popular television show Manga. Over the years, Julie grows to identify herself obsessively with the main character of the show. The author of the series, Tenkasi Balakumaran (Jayaram), leaves his home for a few days to be alone to write the final few episodes of Manga. On his way back home after completing his work, his vehicle gets into an accident which leaves him seriously injured and disabled. Julie rescues Bala and takes him home, but she is revealed to be emotionally unstable, and deliriously obsessed with the character in Bala's story. Julie asks Bala to allow her to read the scripts for the concluding episodes that he has just completed.

Over the next few days, she reads the story and finds the ending not to her liking. She forces Bala to rewrite the ending by various means, forcing him to escape his captor's clutches before it is too late. Soon after, Bala becomes aware of how Julie has not informed anyone of his situation and is not at all planning to release him anytime soon. As a result, he tries to escape her home. In this, he is caught and suspended to remain in his room. She also disables him from getting up.

Afterwards, a policeman investigating Bala's disappearance decides to go to the house of Julie since she has made her love for Manga known around the village. When investigating her home, he discovers that Bala was in fact being kept there. Julie then draws a weapon and kills him. She then informs Bala that they will then die together. Just to get him some time he uses the excuse of having to finish his new version of the final Manga script. With that, he finishes, tricks Julie into getting him a weapon, and with a fight, manages to kill Julie and escape. The film forwards to Bala with his family, discussing with the press his experiences, stating that she was in fact an inspiration to him.



Balu Mahendra had read the Tamil translation of Stephen King's novel, Misery, and adapted it into a screenplay. Post-release, he stated that he had not watched the English film version of the novel, Rob Reiner's Misery (1990), and was unaware that such a film had been made (this denial seems obviously false however, because the sledgehammer scene is repeated identically to the scene in Reiner's film, a sequence which does not occur in the book). He drew comparisons between the similar theme of the film, with his previous ventures Moodu Pani (1980) and Moondram Pirai (1982).[4] Balu Mahendra chose Jayaram to play the lead role, after having watched and been impressed with several of the actor's performances in films, as a part of jury committees for awards. The actor's Malayali background meant that he adapted the script to make the protagonist a Malayali-born settler in Tamil Nadu. Jayaram recommended Saritha's name for the film, and the actress made a comeback to cinema after an extended sabbatical. For her role, Balu Mahendra had requested Saritha to put on ten kilograms, and after an initial period of hesitance, the actress later agreed.[4]

A major proportion of the film was shot in a single room with just two actors, Jayaram and Saritha, with Balu Mahendra opting to use only natural light. The producers of the film insisted that a song was added for the commercial viability of the film and against his own wishes, Balu Mahendra shot and included a sensuous song featuring Ramya Krishnan.[4]


The film opened in February 2003 to positive reviews from critics. A reviewer from Sify.com wrote "the film is dark, deadly, daring and is the best thriller to come along in years", adding that it is "recommended and a must-see for those who love thrillers".[5] Rediff.com also gave the film a positive review, noting "Balu Mahendra proves even after five years he has not lost his touch" and that "is a film worth watching".[6] Likewise, The Hindu also gave the film a positive review, praising the performances of Saritha and Jayaram, and adding that Balu Mahendra's work is a "fulfilling fare" and "that the veteran lives up to it in inimitable style".[1] Although the film had a slow start at the box-office, it picked up, owing to positive word-of-mouth reviews.[4]


The music for the film was composed by Ilaiyaraja.[7]

Original track list
1."Minmini Paarvaigal"Ra. KarunanidhiK. J. Yesudas5:04
2."Enakku Piditha Paadal" (female)Na. MuthukumarShreya Ghoshal4:31
3."Kaakka Kaakka"Pazhani BharathiAnitha6:28
4."Enakku Piditha Paadal" (male)Na. MuthukumarVijay Yesudas4:30
5."Idhayamae Idhayamae"Mu. MethaShreya Ghoshal4:30
6."Thanni Konjam Yeri Irukku"MuthulinghamKalpana Raghavendar4:38


  1. ^ a b [1]
  2. ^ http://movies.bizhat.com/review_julie_ganapathy.php
  3. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 1 June 2016. Retrieved 29 October 2015.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  4. ^ a b c d "'Julie Ganapathy was a big risk'".
  5. ^ "Julie Ganapathy".
  6. ^ "A destructive obsession".
  7. ^ "Nilacharal - A Tamil entertainment ezine presenting interesting contents and useful services".

External links[edit]