Thengai Srinivasan

Thengai Srinivasan (21 October 1937 – 9 November 1987) was an Indian actor who appeared in Tamil-language films and plays from the 1960s to the 1980s. He was given the prefix Thengai (coconut) after his role as a coconut-seller in the play Kal Manam. Although originally a comedian, he also performed in other genres and enacted several lead and antagonistic roles.[1]

Thengai Srinivasan
Thengai Srinivasan.jpg
Born
Srinivasan

(1937-10-21)21 October 1937
Tamil Nadu, India
Died9 November 1987(1987-11-09) (aged 50)
Karnataka, India
OccupationActor, comedian
Years active1965–1987
Spouse(s)Lakshmi (till his death)
Children3
RelativesYogi (grandson)
Shrutika (granddaughter)
Adithya Shivpink (grandson)

Early lifeEdit

Srinivasan was born to Rajavel Mudaliar (Chennai) and Subammal (Srivaikuntam in Tuticorin district) on 21 October 1937.[1][2] He had two sisters. When he was seven years old, his family moved to Chennai. Srinivasan's father was an artist who staged several plays and it was his influence which stimulated Srinivasan's interest in an acting career.[1][3]

After school, Srinivasan joined the Integral Coach Factory in Chennai and later started his theatrical career in the Railway Dramatic Club.[3][2] Srinivasan's first stage appearance was in his father's drama Galatta Kalyanam.[1] Srinivasan was also part of the troupe of K. Kannan and portrayed a coconut vendor in one of his plays Kal Manam. Comedian K. A. Thangavelu upon watching the play, announced he should be called Thengai (coconut) Srinivasan thereafter.[3][4]

CareerEdit

Srinivasan's first feature film was the mystery thriller Oru Viral in 1965.[5] The film, which saw him playing a detective, was a financial success.[5] Srinivasan was, however, supposed to make his feature film debut in Iravum Pagalum (1965) that marked the acting debut of Jaishankar, but was dropped after distributors raised concerns about two newcomers being featured in the lead roles. He and Jaishankar nonetheless would become close friends later and Srinivasan was featured in almost 80 per cent of Jaishankar's early films.[2]

Srinivasan mostly enacted the role of a comedian or a sidekick. Notable roles in his subsequent career include that of a fake Swami and that of an idealistic industrialist in the cult comedy films Kasethan Kadavulada and Thillu Mullu, respectively.[2][3] In 2013, Forbes India included his performance in Thillu Mullu, along with that of Rajinikanth in the same film, in its list of the "25 Greatest Acting Performances of Indian Cinema".[6] Srinivasan also played antagonistic roles; one of which was that of a blackmailing photographer in S. P. Muthuraman's Mayangukiral Oru Maadhu.[2]

He played the lead in Vaali's play Sri Krishna Vijayam, which was later made into a feature film named Kaliyuga Kannan. The makers originally intended to cast Sivaji Ganesan in the role, but Ganesan, being impressed by Srinivasan's performance in the play, suggested that Srinivasan may be retained for the film version. Kaliyuga Kannan went on to become a high commercial success and is considered one of Srinivasan's most notable films.[2] Other films featuring Srinivasan in the lead role were Nandri Karangal, Sri Ramajayam, Porter Ponnusami and Adukku Malli, which was a box office success.[7] In 1987, Srinivasan produced the film Krishnan Vandhaan with Sivaji Ganesan in the lead. The film did not fare well and got him into deep financial trouble.[2]

DeathEdit

When Srinivasan went to Bangalore, Karnataka to attend the rituals following his aunt's death, he suffered a brain haemorrhage.[2] Despite intensive treatment, he died on 9 November 1987.[1][8] His body was brought to his house at Ramasamy Street in Gopalapuram, Chennai. His death was marked by tributes from film fans and industry insiders alike.[1][2]

Personal lifeEdit

Srinivasan was married to Lakshmi. The couple have two daughters – Geethalakshmi and Rajeshwari – and a son, Shivshankar.[2] Geethalakshmi's son Yogi has acted in films such as Azhagiya Asura (2006) and Sivi (2007),[9] and Shivshankar's daughter Shrutika also appeared in a few Tamil films during the 2000s.[10] Shivshankar's son Adithya Shivpink is also an actor, having starred in films featuring Rajinikanth since 2018.[11][12]

FilmographyEdit

This is a partial filmography. You can expand it.

1960sEdit

Year Film Role Notes
1965 Oru Viral CID officer [1]
1966 Vallavan Oruvan
1967 Kadhalithal Podhuma
1967 Raja Veetu Pillai Singaram
1967 Sabash Thambi
1967 Ethirigal Jakkirathai
1968 Ethir Neechal
1968 Muthu Chippi
1968 Oli Vilakku
1968 Moondrezhuthu
1968 Kannan En Kadhalan
1969 Naangu Killadigal
1969 Nirai Kudam
1969 Akka Thangai
1969 Kanne Pappa
1969 Kuzhandai Ullam
1969 Sivandha Mann
1969 Aindhu Laksham
1969 Nam Naadu Kuppuswamy

1970sEdit

Year Film Role Notes
1970 Maanavan Mayandi
1970 En Annan
1970 Paadhukaappu
1970 Engal Thangam
1970 Namma Veetu Deivam
1970 Penn Deivam
1970 Engirundho Vandhaal
1970 Enga Mama
1970 Anadhai Anandhan
1970 CID Shankar
1971 Meendum Vazhven
1971 Rickshawkaran
1971 Annai Velankanni
1971 Uttharavindri Ulle Vaa Dr. Swamynathan, Sarasa's father
1971 Sumathi En Sundari
1971 Justice Viswanathan
1971 Then Kinnam
1971 Neerum Neruppum
1971 Arunodhayam
1972 Kasethan Kadavulada Appaswamy [3]
1972 Naan Yen Pirandhen
1972 Velli Vizha
1972 Mappillai Azhaippu
1972 Jakkamma
1972 Karunthel Kannayiram
1972 Pillaiyo Pillai
1972 Kadhalikka Vanga
1972 Nalla Neram
1972 Pillaiyo Pillai
1972 Dheivam
1973 Baghdad Perazhagi
1973 Pattikaattu Ponnaiya
1973 Alaigal
1973 Komatha En Kulamatha
1973 Kasi Yathirai
1973 Thedi Vandha Lakshmi
1973 Ulagam Sutrum Valiban
1973 Maru Piravi
1973 Deivakulanthaigal
1973 School Master
1973 Kattila Thottila
1973 Ponvandu
1973 Amman Arul
1973 Manipayal
1974 Kaliyuga Kannan Sambu Iyer [13]
1974 Kai Niraya Kaasu
1974 Prayaschitham
1974 Athaiya Mamiya
1974 Thaai Piranthal
1974 Roshakari
1974 Doctoramma
1974 Naan Avanillai
1974 Engamma Sapatham
1974 Panathukkaga
1974 Vairam
1974 Sirithu Vazha Vendum
1974 Netru Indru Naalai
1974 Ungal Viruppam
1974 Avalum Penn Thaane
1974 Ippadiyum Oru Penn
1975 Pallandu Vazhga
1975 Idhayakkani
1975 Pattikkaattu Raja 'Meyvakku' Meganathan
1975 Ninaithadhai Mudippavan
1975 Thangathile Vairam
1975 Thiruvarul
1975 Enga Pattan Sothu
1975 Andharangam
1975 Uravukku Kai Koduppom
1975 Karotti Kannan
1975 Mayangukiral Oru Maadhu
1975 Aayirathil Oruthi Kabalishwaran
1976 Annakili
1976 Lalitha
1976 Mayor Meenakshi
1976 Akka (film)
1976 Uzhaikkum Karangal
1976 Dasavatharam
1976 Athirshtam Azhaikkirathu
1976 Kumaara Vijayam
1976 Nee Oru Maharani
1976 Kaalangalil Aval Vasantham
1976 Muthana Muthallavo
1976 Mayor Meenakshi
1976 Bhadrakali
1976 Needhikku Thalaivanangu
1977 Aattukara Alamelu
1977 Aasai Manaivi
1977 Uyarndhavargal
1977 Indru Pol Endrum Vaazhga
1977 Meenava Nanban
1977 Chakravarthy
1977 Murugan Adimai
1977 Avar Enakke Sontham
1977 Navarathinam
1977 Aadu Puli Attam
1977 Palabishegham
1978 Madhuraiyai Meetta Sundharapandiyan
1978 Vaazha Ninaiththaal Vaazhalaam
1978 Shri Kanchi Kamakshi Devotee
1978 Thyagam
1978 General Chakravarthi
1978 Varuvan Vadivelan
1978 Oru Nadigai Natakam Parkiral
1978 Vaazhkai Alaigal
1978 Andaman Kadhali
1978 Sadhurangam
1978 Ullathil Kuzhanthaiyadi
1978 Rudhra Thaandavam
1978 Thanga Rangan
1978 Vatathukkul Chadhuram
1978 Pilot Premnath
1978 Sakka Podu Podu Raja
1978 Vanakkatukuriya Kathaliye
1978 Justice Gopinath Bhadrachalam [14]
1978 Sonnadhu Nee Thanaa
1978 Priya
1978 Kaatrinile Varum Geetham
1979 Annai Oru Aalayam
1979 Dharma Yuddham Robert [15]
1979 Anbae Sangeetha
1979 Thaayillamal Naan Illai
1979 Kavari Maan
1979 Kalyanaraman Kittu
1979 Porter Ponnusami
1979 Thirisoolam
1979 Nallathoru Kudumbam
1979 Naan Vazhavaippen
1979 Pattakkathi Bhairavan
1979 Imayam
1979 Vetrikku Oruvan
1979 Gnana Kuzhandhai
1979 Sri Ramajayam
1979 Aarilirindhu Aruvathu Varai
1979 Neela Malargal Kathavarayan Pillai

1980sEdit

Year Film Role Notes
1980 Billa J.J [16]
1980 Anbukku Naan Adimai
1980 Rishi Moolam
1980 Ratha Paasam
1980 Vishwaroopam
1980 Dharma Raja
1980 Jamboo
1980 Yamanukku Yaman Chitragupta [17]
1980 Devi Dharisanam
1980 Avan Aval Adhu
1980 Maria My Darling
1980 Varumayin Niram Sivappu Rangan
1981 Thee
1981 Meendum Kokila Nattuvanar
1981 Ram Lakshman
1981 Ellam Inba Mayyam
1981 Savaal
1981 Kadal Meengal
1981 Garjanai
1981 Kalthoon
1981 Kazhugu
1981 Thillu Mullu Sri Ramachandramurthy [18]
1981 Tik Tik Tik Lakshmi Narayanan [19]
1981 Ellam Inba Mayyam
1982 Auto Raja
1982 Azhagiya Kanne
1982 Ranga
1982 Kanne Radha
1982 Oorukku Oru Pillai
1982 Puthukavithai
1982 Nandri, Meendum Varuga
1982 Adhisayappiravigal
1982 Oorum Uravum
1982 Vasandhathil Or Naal
1982 Mul Illatha Roja
1982 Paritchaikku Neramaachu
1982 Thaai Mookaambikai
1982 Sakalakala Vallavan Sundaram
1982 Rani Theni Thulasilingum
1982 Nenjangal
1982 Moondru Mugam Ramanathan [20]
1983 Saranalayam
1983 Thai Veedu
1983 Miruthanga Chakravarthi
1983 Indru Nee Nalai Naan
1983 Sivappu Sooriyan
1983 Apoorva Sahodarigal
1983 Thanga Magan
1984 Nooravathu Naal
1984 Nalla Naal
1984 Thiruppam
1984 Komberi Mookan
1984 Chiranjeevi
1984 Alaya Deepam
1984 Vaazhkai
1984 Kai Kodukkum Kai
1984 Osai
1984 Neengal Kettavai
1984 Ezhuthatha Sattangal
1984 Ninaivugal
1984 Kuva Kuva Vaathugal
1984 Sarithira Nayagan
1985 Chain Jayapal
1985 Kaakki Sattai
1985 Arthamulla Aasaigal
1985 Udaya Geetham
1985 Deivapiravi
1985 Aduthathu Albert
1985 Thendrale Ennai Thodu
1985 Andha Oru Nimidam
1985 Unnai Thedi Varuven
1985 Anthasthu
1985 Sri Raghavendrar
1985 Padikkadavan
1985 Pillai Nila
1985 Chain Jayapal
1986 Yaaro Ezhuthiya Kavithai
1986 Naan Adimai Illai
1986 Viduthalai
1986 Mandhira Punnagai
1986 Oomai Vizhigal
1986 Mel Maruvathoor Arpudhangal
1986 Kulirkaala Megangal
1986 Kodai Mazhai
1986 Anandha Kanneer
1987 Paruva Ragam
1987 Rettai Vaal Kuruvi
1987 Muthukkal Moondru
1987 Krishnan Vandhaan

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ a b c d e f g Majordasan. "Potpourri of titbits about Tamil cinema – Thengai Srinivasan". Kalyanamalai. Archived from the original on 11 October 2016. Retrieved 1 September 2011.
  2. ^ a b c d e f g h i j Raman, Mohan V. (20 October 2012). "He walked tall in tinsel town". The Hindu. Archived from the original on 11 October 2016. Retrieved 26 March 2013.
  3. ^ a b c d e Guy, Randor (20 June 2015). "Blast From The Past: Kaasethan Kadavulada (1972)". The Hindu. Archived from the original on 14 November 2016. Retrieved 24 June 2015.
  4. ^ Ganesan-Ram, Sharmila (30 August 2009). "Angry, Crazy, Gemini and Cho". The Times of India. Archived from the original on 1 April 2018. Retrieved 26 March 2013.
  5. ^ a b Guy, Randor (15 September 2012). "Oru Viral 1965". The Hindu. Archived from the original on 11 October 2016. Retrieved 21 February 2014.
  6. ^ "25 Greatest Acting Performances of Indian Cinema". Forbes India. 27 April 2013. Archived from the original on 12 January 2016. Retrieved 14 September 2016.
  7. ^ Pillai, Sreedhar (7 September 2010). "Piranha bares its fangs". The Times of India. Archived from the original on 11 October 2016. Retrieved 26 March 2013.
  8. ^ "'Thengai' Srinivasan dead". The Indian Express. PTI. 10 November 1987. p. 9.
  9. ^ "Eerie thrills". The Hindu. 20 September 2007. Archived from the original on 11 October 2016. Retrieved 1 March 2014.
  10. ^ "Sruthika". Sify. Archived from the original on 11 October 2016. Retrieved 26 March 2013.
  11. ^ Jagannathan, Sahithya (15 September 2018). "No filter: With no star backing, actor Adithya has arrived". DT Next. Archived from the original on 26 March 2020. Retrieved 26 March 2020.
  12. ^ Adithya Shivpink [@Shivpink] (3 September 2019). "Yes , it's on the birth certificate as my surname... a combination of my dad (shivashanker) and mom (pinky) 😁" (Tweet) – via Twitter.
  13. ^ Krishnamachari, Suganthy (12 June 2009). "Livewire of the stage". The Hindu. Archived from the original on 16 May 2018. Retrieved 16 May 2018.
  14. ^ Ramachandran 2014, pp. 86–87.
  15. ^ Ramachandran 2014, p. 95.
  16. ^ "When Rajni was Billa". Rediff.com. 7 December 2007. Archived from the original on 4 March 2016. Retrieved 16 May 2018.
  17. ^ Piousji (17 June 1979). "Khaas Baat". Sunday. Vol. 17. p. 51.
  18. ^ Ramachandran 2014, p. 106.
  19. ^ Howarth, Troy (31 May 2019). So Deadly, So Perverse: Giallo-Style Films From Around the World, Vol. 3. Midnight Marquee & BearManor Media. pp. 199–200.
  20. ^ Devnath, DPK (23 September 2018). "ரஜினி டூ சூப்பர் ஸ்டார் – மூன்று முகம் – திரை விமர்சனம்". Ezhuthaani. Archived from the original on 30 November 2018. Retrieved 30 November 2018.

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