Pallavi Anu Pallavi

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Pallavi Anupallavi
Pallavi Anu Pallavi.jpg
Directed byMani Ratnam
Produced byT. Govindarajan
Written byMani Ratnam
Music byIlayaraja
CinematographyBalu Mahendra
Edited byB. Lenin
Venus Pictures
Release date
Running time
140 minutes[1]

Pallavi Anupallavi is a 1983 Indian Kannada-language film directed by Mani Ratnam in his directorial debut. It stars Anil Kapoor, Lakshmi and Kiran Vairale portraying the lead roles. The soundtrack and background score by Ilaiyaraaja for this movie is widely considered as one of the greatest works by the Maestro.

The film deals with an unconventional plot of a committed young man falling in love with an older woman, and finding himself and his true desires through the experience. Balu Mahendra and Ilaiyaraaja were the film's cinematographer and music composer, respectively. The film was an average commercial success, but earned critical acclaim from award committees.


Having pledged his love for Madhu (Kiran Vairale), Vijay (Anil Kapoor) finds himself entwined in a close friendship with Anu (Lakshmi), a married woman separated from her husband. Vijay grapples with the definition of love, treading the fine line between trust and attraction, amidst tremendous societal pressures. He is confused whether he loves Anu, an older woman, yet knows that Madhu is ready to accept him as a husband. Amid all this is his youthful streak of rebellion, ready to take on the world despite the taboos attached.



After completing his MBA and beginning work as a management consultant, Mani Ratnam was keen to enter the film industry and thus accepted the invitation of his friends Ravishankar and Raman (the sons of director B. R. Panthulu and musician Sundaram Balachander respectively) to co-write the script of a Kannada film they were making, titled Bangarada Ghani. Featuring Vishnuvardhan, Ambareesh, Roja Ramani and Lakshmi in the lead roles, the film was later uncompleted and shelved. Mani Ratnam then decided to branch out as a director himself and wrote a script entirely in English, during a single month in 1980.[2] With the script of the film which he intended to make in Tamil, Ratnam first met actor Kamal Haasan to play the film's protagonist, after his friend Kitty had helped arrange a meeting with the actor. Haasan refused the offer and demanded changes to the script if he was to play the lead role, but introduced Ratnam to his brother Charuhasan, who pledged to help find the script a producer. Ratnam revealed that he was open to the idea of selling the script to a popular director so that he could learn about film-making during the production process, but had unfruitful meetings with K. Balachander, P. Bharathiraja and J. Mahendran.[3] Haasan later claimed he was unable to work on Pallavi Anu Pallavi due to his commitment to Raja Paarvai (1981) and because he was "also getting into Hindi films".[4]

Ratnam subsequently met several producers and had the script rejected by over twenty studios, including Rajkannu of Sri Amman Creations and Gowri Shankar of Devi Films. Subsequently, his uncle Krishnamurthy and T. Govindarajan of Venus Films agreed to finance the film under the condition that he make it as a low-budget Kannada film. Ratnam agreed, but P. C. Sriram was his original choice for cinematography, but the producers wanted an established gcinematographer. Hence Mani Ratnam approached Balu Mahendra. Ratnam also convinced B. Lenin (who was incidentally his neighbour), to work on the film as an editor after Ratnam had been impressed with his skills in Mahendran's Uthiripookkal (1979).[3] Thotta Tharani joined the team after acquainting with Ratnam during the shoot of Raja Paarvai, which the director had casually gone to watch. For the music of the film, Ratnam had initially signed a prominent composer who had scored music in Kannada films, but wriggled out of the contract after being unimpressed by his work in another film during the period. He asked Balu Mahendra to put him through to composer Ilaiyaraaja, who agreed to do the film for a one-fifth of his usual remuneration. While selecting the cast for his script, Ratnam approached Lakshmi, who he worked with during the making of Bangarutha Ghanu and she accepted to work on the film and portray an older woman who falls in love with a younger man. The selection of Lakshmi, who was a well-established actress at the time, prompted Krishnamurthy to agree to financing the film. Anil Kapoor was chosen to portray the lead role after Ratnam was impressed with his performance in the Telugu film Vamsa Vruksham (1980) and also helped bring Kiran Vairale into the film after Suhasini had turned the film down. Rohit Srinath, the son of actor Srinath, was a child actor in the film and appeared in Mani Ratnam's first shot.[3]

Ratnam did not know Kannada before directing the film but learned it "on the job", while he extensively researched literature for the script at the USIS and British Council offices in Chennai.[5] With the help of his associate Shivanand, he was able to convert the English dialogues into Kannada and help the actors perform their respective lines, in a language unfamiliar to them. The film was shot in Coorg and Bangalore, close to Venus Films' distribution centre in the city. Towards the end of the production, the film ran into financial troubles and it took twenty one months to finish the final three days of the shoot, owing to call-sheet problems.[3]


Pallavi Anu Pallavi
Soundtrack album by
GenreFeature film soundtrack

Ilaiyaraaja composed the film's background score and soundtrack, the lyrics for which were penned by R. N. Jayagopal.[6] In his biographical book Conversations with Mani Ratnam, Ratnam revealed that Balu Mahendra introduced him to Ilaiyaraaja. Ratnam told Raja that he was doing a Kannada film with a very small budget but wanted him to compose the music, while also confessing that he could not afford to pay the latter's market price. Raja agreed to work for one-fourth or one-fifth the amount he was getting at the time.[7] The composer would go on to collaborate with the director for nine more of the latter's films, including acclaimed Tamil films like Mouna Ragam (1986), Nayakan (1987), Agni Natchathiram (1988), Anjali (1990) and Thalapathi (1991).[8]

Track list
1."Nagu Endide"R. N. JayagopalS. Janaki4:23
2."Hrudaya Rangoli"R. N. JayagopalS. P. Sailaja4:06
3."Naguva Nayana"R. N. JayagopalS. P. Balasubrahmanyam, S. Janaki4:10
4."O Premi O Premi"R. N. JayagopalS. P. Balasubrahmanyam4:23
Total length:17:02


The film opened in January 1983 and experienced an average success at the box office, performing well in the city's theatres, but not so well in the towns and the villages.[3]


1982–83 Karnataka State Film Awards


Pallavi Anu Pallavi was dubbed in Telugu with same title and in Tamil language as Priya oh Priya.[9] Idea Cellular has used the tune of Naguva Nayana as their theme music for the advertisements.[10][11]


  1. ^ a b c d e Rangan 2012, p. 289.
  2. ^ "Pallavi Anu Pallavi's script was originally written in English". The Times of India. 28 March 2015. Archived from the original on 16 September 2017. Retrieved 27 September 2015.
  3. ^ a b c d e Rangan 2012, pp. 12–16.
  4. ^ Haasan, Kamal (20 October 2012). "'Of course Velu Nayakan doesn't dance'". The Hindu. Archived from the original on 18 June 2013. Retrieved 22 February 2018.
  5. ^ Melwani, Lavina (26 September 2015). "Up close and personal with Mani Ratnam". The Hindu. Archived from the original on 27 September 2015. Retrieved 27 September 2015.
  6. ^ "Pallavi Anu Pallavi (Original Motion Picture Soundtrack) – EP". iTunes. Archived from the original on 22 December 2015. Retrieved 18 September 2015.
  7. ^ Rangan 2012, pp. 15–16.
  8. ^ Rangan 2012, pp. 289–291.
  9. ^ Vasudev, A. (2002). Cinemaya. p. 81.
  10. ^ Srinivasan, Karthik. "Indian Advertisements". Itwofs. Archived from the original on 26 July 2017. Retrieved 10 February 2018.
  11. ^ Venkateswaran, Vikram. "Happy Birthday Mani Ratnam: Tamil Cinema's Constant Gardener". The Quint. Retrieved 14 September 2018.


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