wiki:A. P. Nagarajan

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A. P. Nagarajan

Tamil director and scenarist. Considered one of the pioneering new generation of scenarists in the mid-50s in context of the anti-religious thrust of the DMK Film. Playwright and actor associated with the TKS Brothers; début in film adapting the play Nalvar into a script (1953; he also acted in the film). Like the DMK writers and directors, he tried to go beyond what film-maker and critic K. Hariharan calls the ‘Therukoothu vaudeville’. A crucial political shift, accompanying the forming of the Thamizharasu Party, which rejected the DMK’s emphasis on atheism, informs his revival of the discredited mythological genre with K. Somu’s hit Sampoorna Ramayanam (1958) which Nagarajan scripted. The film had a major impact on Sivaji Ganesan’s political career, helping the star to overcome his earlier association with the atheist DMK. Also edited the Thamizharasu journal Sattai. Started his own production company with actor V.K. Ramaswamy, scripting and producing Somu’s Nalla Idathu Sambandham (1958). His early films as director are melodramas often bewailing, like the DMK films, the loss of ‘tradition’ and the ‘decadence’ of modern times. e.g. in Navarathri, a woman runs away from home and meets nine different men on nine consecutive nights, apparently experiencing each of the nine rasas of Indian aesthetic theory in the process; in Vaa Raja Vaa, a boy ekes out a living as a tourist guide in Mahabalipuram; Thillana Mohanambal, one of his bigger hits, is set in Thanjavur and features a dancer and musician. Best known for a series of 60s mythologicals: Thiruvillaiyadal, Saraswathi Sabatham, Kandan Karunai, Thirumal Perumai, etc., reinvoking the stagederived conventions he had earlier opposed, mobilising their kitschy inventiveness as in Saraswathi Sabatham where Shiva is dressed as a Greek general, and hiring retired stage actors from the 50s. His films often starred Ganesan.

FILMOGRAPHY: 1962: Vadivukku Valai Kappu; 1963: Kulamagal Radhai; 1964: Navarathri; 1965: Thiruvillaiyadal; 1966: Saraswathi Sabatham; 1967: Kandan Karunai; Seeta; Thiruvarut Selvar; 1968: Thillana Mohanambal; Thirumal Perumai; 1969: Gurudakshinai; Vaa Raja Vaa; 1970: Thirumalai Thenkumari; Vilayattu Pillai; 1971: Kankatchi; 1972: Agathiar; Tirupati Kanyakumari Yatra; 1973: Karaikkal Ammaiyar; Raja Raja Chozhan; Thirumalai Daivam; 1974: Gumastavin Magal; 1975: Melnattu Marumagal; 1977: Navarathnam; Shri Krishna Leela.