Veteran Tamil filmmaker GN Rangarajan passed away on Thursday in Chennai from the effects of age-related ailments. He was 90. His son GNR Kumaravelan, who is also a filmmaker, took to Twitter to share the news. “My father, my mentor, my love… passed away at about 8:45 am today. I need all your prayers to keep my family strong,” he wrote.
Rangarajan started his career in the film industry in the 1950s by assisting the iconic filmmaker A. Bhimsingh. He later assisted director SP Muthurama before starting his own business in the late 1970s. He made his directorial debut with a supernatural comedy Kalyanaraman (1979), starring Kamal Haasan. It was the beginning of Rangarajan’s long and successful collaboration with Kamal. The director-actor duo delivered a slew of hit films in the 1980s, including Kalyanaraman, Meendum Kokila, Kadal Meengal, Ellam Inbamayam and Maharasan.
Rangarajan admired Kamal so much that he even called his house ‘Kamal Illam’.
Kamal has called Rangarajan’s death “a very personal loss” in a message of condolence. “From the moment I went into movies to the moment GN Rangarajan died, he poured unconditional love on me. His hard work has earned him a place in Tamil cinema. He directed many movies that are still admired and rewatched by fans. His son GNR Kumaravelan is also following in his footsteps in the film industry,” Kamal said in his statement.
பேரன்பினைப் ஓர் இழந்துவிட்டேன். ஜி.என்.ரங்கராஜனுக்கு அஞ்சலி. pic.twitter.com/OmTzQqpdL5
— Kamal Haasan (@ikamalhaasan) June 3, 2021
It is worth noting that Rangarajan started his journey in the film industry in 1960 with Kalathur Kannamma. And so did Kamal Hassan. The Vishwaroopam star was not yet 4 years old when he made his acting debut with this film.
Kamal sir wishes my father Gn. Rangarajan on his 90th birthday pic.twitter.com/X9WhISpFBd
— Gnr.kumaravelan (@gnr_kumaravelan) December 17, 2020
“Not just in movies, he supported me in my service to people. He was always by my side,” he added. “I have lost a brother who has given me unconditional love. My sincere condolences to his wife Jakkubai, my brother and director GNR Kumaravelan and his relatives.”