Indian actor M.N. Nambiar, who frequently played the bad guy in Tamil films, died Nov. 19 in Chennai, India. He was 92.
Born in Kerala state, Manjeri Narayana Nambiar entered the biz at age 13 acting on the stage. But it wasn’t until 1935’s “Bhakta Ramadas” that he played a villain, a part that stuck with him throughout his career in seven decades in Tamil film and TV.
His career took off when he was paired with M.G. Ramachandran, who played the hero, in 1950’s “Manthiri Kumari.” Thereafter the two starred in several films as hero and villain, including “Enga veetu pillai” (1965). He also acted alongside other Tamil stars of the day including Sivaji Ganesan in “Thillana Mohanambal” (1968) and Gemini Ganesan in “Missiamma.”
“The MGR formula films were not complete without Nambiar as the villain,” Tamil films historian Anandan told Indian press.
The nearly 1,000 films he appeared in included 1952’s English-language “The Jungle,” directed by William Berke and “Digambara swamiyar” in which he essayed 11 roles.
In later years he turned to character roles and TV, while also having his own legit group, Nambiar Nataka Mandram. His last appearance was in 2006’s “Sudesi.”
He is survived by his wife, a politico son and a daughter.