Actor-director Manivannan laid to rest

Chennai, June 16 (IANS) Popular Tamil actor-director Manivannan was laid to rest at the Porur burial ground here Sunday.

He died Saturday following a cardiac arrest. He was 58. He is survived by his wife, son and a daughter.

His funeral was attended by big names in the Tamil film fraternity and politicians, who paid their last respects to one of Tamil cinema’s coveted character actors.

An influential writer, versatile actor and a satirist, Manivannan donned multiple hats in his career spanning three decades.

While he started his career as a writer and penned story and dialogues for Tamil films such as “Nizhalagal”, “Tick Tick Tick” and “Alaigai Oivathillai”, he gained prominence as an actor and director.

Having directed 50 films, mostly featuring his friend and co-actor Sathyaraj, he is known for some of the blockbusters like “Jallikattu”, “Chinna Thambi Periya Thambi” and “Pudhu Manithan”.

He directed Sathyaraj in more than 20 Tamil films, including “Government Mappillai”, “Amaidhipadai” and “Nagaraja Cholan MA, MLA”.

As an actor, he is mostly remembered for playing roles with negative shade and the hero’s father or uncle in over 400 films. He gained immense popularity for his performance in Tamil films “Sangamam”, “Avvai Shanmugi”, “Mudhalvan” and “Ullathai Allitha”.

A political satirist, both on and off the screen, he was a member of “Naam Tamizhar” (We Tamil) group and fought for the betterment of Sri Lankan Tamils. Recently, he even got his son Raghu engaged to a Sri Lankan Tamil girl.

He was also an ardent supporter of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE). After his demise on Saturday, his body was covered with an LTTE flag.

Manivannan was not only remembered as a great actor and director, but also as a humble human being.

In his condolence message, DMK chief M. Karunanidhi said, “A talented person has left us all too suddenly”.

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