Indian director C.V. Sridhar, 75, helmer of such romantic comedies as “Kadhalikka neramillai,” “Kalyana parisu” and “Nenjil oru alayam,” died Oct. 20 in Chennai of a heart attack.
Sridhar was credited with introducing such thesps as Jayalalitha, later chief minister of Tamilnadu state, Kanchana and Ravichandran to the screen.
Born in Tamilnadu’s Chengalpettai district, Sridhar started as a playwright. According to the Hindu newspaper, theater personality T.K. Shanmugam liked Sridhar’s play “Rathapasam” and gave it a boost in the state. This led to offers in films.
Starting in 1959 with “Kalyana parisu,” Sridhar switched between comedies and tragedies, nearly all box office hits as a result of which he was known to have “the Midas touch.” Working for Tamil powerhouse Venus Pictures, he also remade some of his hits such as “Nenjil oru alayam” into Hindi as “Dil ek mandir,” “Kalyani parisu” as “Nazrana” and “Kadhalikka neramillai,” as “Pyar kiye jaa,” but the dialogue-driven pics didn’t always translate well. Still that didn’t stop Shridhar who remade a few more, besides even when the films were a disappointment the songs became classics.
”He was a master of melodrama. At times, critics would scorn at his films but he knew how to tell a gripping family social on celluloid,” film historian Firoze Rangoonwalla told the Times of India.
He made nearly 60 films in the South Indian languages of Tamil, Telugu, Kannada and Malayalam as well as Hindi. His last outing as director was 1986’s “Yaro ezhithai kavithai.”
He is survived by his wife, son, daughter and grandchildren.