wiki:Modern Theatres

Version 3 (modified by Trupti, 12 years ago) (diff)


Modern Theatres

Angel Films, started in 1934 by T.R. Sundaram in partnership with S.S. Velayudham Pillai, became the Modern Theatres Studio in 1937, soon one of South India’s most influential and busiest studios before the WW2 period, at its peak making films in Tamil, Telugu, Kannada, Hindi, Sinhalese and Malayalam. Located in Salem, over 300km from Madras, it related to the vast Southern hinterland largely ignored by Madras and Bombay. It created a Malayalam film industry, producing its first sound film, Nottani’s Balan (1938) and Sundaram’s Kandam Becha Coat (1961), the first Malayalam colour film. The studio did the same for Telugu productions in the 40s, introducing megastars Anjali Devi and S.V. Ranga Rao (in B.V. Ramanandam’s Varudhini, 1946). Filmmakers working in Tamil, the studio’s native language, include Ellis R. Duncan, C.V. Raman, K. Ramnoth, T.R. Raghunath etc., while among the Tamil stars introduced there was M.R. Radha (in Santhanathevam, 1939). Also sponsored the early DMK Films mainly because of their financial success. The poet and scenarist Bharatidasan was employed here, and the studio later produced the Karunanidhi-scripted Manthiri Kumari (1950). Nevertheless, the studio claimed ideological neutrality, unlike the major Madras studios led by e.g. K. Subramanyam and later S.S. Vasan. Its commitment to pure entertainment allowed for tighter budgets and the Modern formula was later replicated by several studios in Salem itself as well as in nearby Coimbatore, making these regions into Southern production centres rivalling Madras.

Cinema Theatres