Rajadhi Raja (1989 film)

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Rajadhi Raja
Rajadhi Raja (1989).jpg
Theatrical release poster
Directed byR. Sundarrajan
Screenplay byPanchu Arunachalam
Story byR. Sundarrajan
Produced byR. D. Bhaskar
Edited byB. Lenin
V. T. Vijayan
Music byIlaiyaraaja
Pavalar Creations
Release date
  • 4 March 1989 (1989-03-04)

Rajadhi Raja (transl. King of Kings) is a 1989 Indian Tamil-language action comedy film, directed by R. Sundarrajan and written by Panchu Arunachalam. The film stars Rajinikanth in a dual role, with Nadhiya and Radha portraying his characters' love interests. It revolves around Raja, a rich estate owner's son who seeks to avenge his father's death. He is aided in his quest by Chinnarasu, a lookalike.

Rajadhi Raja was released on 4 March 1989. The film became a box office blockbuster.


A rich estate owner Vishwanathan is killed by his second wife Sarasu and her brother Aadimoolam for his property. The estate owner's son Rajashekar returns from the United States and learns of this. In order to bring the culprits to book, he makes his friend Sethupathi, a rickshaw puller, act as Raja. But soon, Aadimoolam learns of this, kills Sethu and frames Raja as the killer. Raja is sentenced to death. In between, Raja loves Senkamalam, sister of an employee in his estate.

In the same village where Raja lives, there exists his lookalike, Chinnaraasu, whose aim in life is to wed his sweetheart Lakshmi. Raja escapes from jail, meets Chinnaraasu and makes Chinnaraasu take his place in jail. After many twist and turns, Raja brings the culprits to book. At the end, Raja marries Senkamalam and Chinnarasu marries Lakshmi.




R. Sundarrajan initially planned to direct Amman Kovil Kizhakale with Rajinikanth which did not happen. When Sundarrajan met Panchu Arunachalam who was finding plot for a new project with collaboration of S. P. Muthuraman and Rajinikanth, he narrated the plotline of Rajathi Raja which impressed both Rajinikanth and Arunachalam. Rajinikanth insisted Sundarrajan to direct the film who relented after initial rejections to direct the film.[1] The film was produced under Ilaiyaraaja's brother R. D. Bhaskar under their home banner Pavalar Creations.[2] Cinematography was handled by Rajarajan, and editing by B. Lenin and V. T. Vijayan.[3]


Initially, Revathi and Rupini were reported to be the two lead actresses. Due to date clashes, Revathi's role was given to Radha and Rupini's role to Nadhiya.[3] This was the last film for Radha to act with Rajinikanth and it was the only film for Nadhiya with Rajinikanth.[2] Radha Ravi, who portrayed one of the antagonists, initially "approached the role like a serious villain". However, when he was told that his character knows Rajinikanth’s real identity, "I decided to play the character like a muff, and when I suggested the idea to director Sundarrajan, he accepted it". Ravi also intentionally mimicked his father M. R. Radha's voice and took inspiration from his father's character from the 1961 film Paava Mannippu.[2]


The song "Vaa Vaa" was initially planned to shoot at Ooty but due to heavy rainfall, the crew then decided to shoot the song at Coonoor and again went back to Ooty during its non rainy day and completed the remaining shoot.[1] Radha Ravi said Rajinikanth wanted this scene where there will be a snake in the hand, Sundarrajan objected as he felt it was "over the top" but Rajinikanth insisted on this scene because “he liked to have a snake scene in his films for sentimental reasons”.[2] The filming was completed in 50 days.[1]


The music was composed by Ilaiyaraaja.[4][5] The soundtrack became hugely popular and was said to have sold around 22000 units.[6]

Song Singer(s) Lyrics Length
"Meenamma Meenamma" Mano, K. S. Chitra Piraisoodan 04:38
"Maama Un Ponna Kodu" S. P. Balasubrahmanyam Gangai Amaran 04:25
"Malaiyaala Karaiyoram" Mano Vaali 04:42
"Enkitta Modhadhe" Mano, K. S. Chitra Ponnadiyan 04:51
"Un Nenja Thottu Sollu" (Album Only) P. Susheela, K. S. Chitra Gangai Amaran 04:38
"Vaa Vaa Manjal Malare" Mano, S. P. Sailaja Ilaiyaraaja 04:34
"Ulaga Vaazhkkaiye" S. P. Balasubrahmanyam 00:58
"Adi Aathu Kulla Aathimaram" S. P. Balasubrahmanyam 01:18

Release and reception[edit]

Rajadhi Raja was released on 4 March 1989.[7] Ananda Vikatan rated the film 43 out of 100.[8] N. Krishnaswamy of The Indian Express wrote "[sic] the film is entertaining despite the abundant cliches and to-the-hilt commercialism".[9]


  1. ^ a b c Guna, M. (27 March 2019). "ஒன்லைன் வாய்ப்பு, ஊட்டி மழை, ரஜினி சொன்ன சஜஷன்!" - ஆர்.சுந்தர்ராஜன் #30YearsOfRajathiraja" [One-line opportunity, Ooty rainfall, Suggestion given by Rajini – R. Sundarrajan]. Ananda Vikatan. Archived from the original on 19 November 2019. Retrieved 28 March 2019.
  2. ^ a b c d Suganth, M. (4 March 2019). "Celebrating 30 years of Raajadhi Raja". The Times of India. Archived from the original on 19 November 2019. Retrieved 4 March 2019.
  3. ^ a b "ராஜாதி ராஜா (1989)". Cinema Express. Archived from the original on 29 September 2014. Retrieved 12 January 2019.
  4. ^ "Rajadhi Raja (1989)". Raaga.com. Archived from the original on 23 February 2014. Retrieved 10 February 2014.
  5. ^ "Raajadhi Raaja Tamil Film LP Vinyl Record by Ilayaraja". Mossymart. Archived from the original on 16 December 2021. Retrieved 16 December 2021.
  6. ^ பாரதி, திரை (2 October 2022). "ஆறிலிருந்து எழுபது வரை: ரஜினி சரிதம் - 79". Kamadenu (in Tamil). Archived from the original on 30 November 2022. Retrieved 17 March 2023.
  7. ^ K., Janani (5 March 2021). "Nadiya remembers Rajinikanth's Rajadhi Raja on 32nd anniversary. Throwback pic". India Today. Archived from the original on 16 December 2021. Retrieved 16 December 2021.
  8. ^ "சினிமா விமர்சனம்: ராஜாதி ராஜா". Ananda Vikatan (in Tamil). 26 March 1989. Archived from the original on 21 June 2020. Retrieved 21 June 2020.
  9. ^ Krishnaswamy, N. (17 March 1989). "Rajathiraja". The Indian Express. p. 5. Retrieved 11 January 2019.

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