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Veteran director Mahendran dies, huge loss to Tamil cinema

Legendary filmmaker Mahendran passed away in Chennai this morning. His death has shocked many celebrities including superstar Rajinikanth. 
The 79-year-old is known for his poignant filmmaking style. He started donning the greasepaint in the recent years and was part of films like Rajinikanth’s ‘Petta’ and Vijay’s ‘Theri’. He was last seen in Atharvaa-starrer ‘Boomerang’.

Announcing his death news, his son and director John Mahendran posted on social media: “Director Mahendran passed away this morning.”

Mahendran made his directorial debut with ‘Mullum Malarum’. In an interview, he had said, “I got an opportunity to criticise Tamil cinema in front of MGR. Later, he spotted me at a press meet, took me home and presented me with the volumes of Ponniyin Selvan. This was the starting point of my journey as a screenplay writer.”

Mahendran is regarded as one of the greatest film makers of Tamil cinema and has influenced several filmmakers of the generations followed. Particularly, he has been an inspiration for legendary directors like Mani Ratnam, shankar and he has made great influence in the style and mannerism of Rajinikanth.

Mahendran entered the film industry as a screenwriter, writing scripts for nearly 26 films. He made an immediate impact with his first directional venture ‘Mullum Malarum’ (1978). 

Mahendran’s next film ‘Uthiripookkal’, based on a short story written by Pudumaipithan, firmly established him as an important film maker in Tamil cinema. 

His ‘Nenjathai Killathe’ won three National Film Awards including the award for the best regional film. Also, he served as the head of the direction department of BOFTA Film Institute, Chennai.


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