Born as Dakshinamoorthy, M. Karunanidhi, the President of Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK) is a doyen in Indian politics.

Kalaignar Karunanidhi

Apart from his esteemed reputation and several achievements on the political field, ‘Kalaignar’ as he is called by his countless followers has held a strong bond and association with the Tamil film industry after starting out as a screenwriter.

A highly respected leader of the masses, we bring to you few wonderful facts about ‘Kalaignar’ Karunanidhi:

The title ‘Kalaignar’ was given to Karunanidhi by the Late iconic actor M. R. Radha after watching a play he had written under the title“Thooku Medai”.

Karunanidhi’s first film as a screenwriter was for the MGR starrer, Rajakumari, in 1947 while his last was Ponnar Shankar, starring Prashanth in 2011.

It must be noted Kalaignar was actively involved in writing dialogues for the historical soap opera show, Ramanujar, till 2016.

He was also an instrumental force penning screenplays for MGR’s Manthiri Kumari and Malaikkallan as well as Sivaji Ganesan’s Parasakthi and Manohara - all films going on to achieve cult status not only in Tamil film industry, but also in the history of Indian cinema.

In his 64-year career in the film industry as a scriptwriter, screenwriter, dialogue writer, Karunanidhi has written screenplay for 69 films.

An avid reader, nearly 10,000 books can be found at Kalaignar’s residence and we can pretty much assume this as an attributing factor for his flair for writing prolific stories in Tamil cinema. 

Apart from his extensive involvement in Tamil cinema, Kalaignar has also written more than 150 books, 10 socially conscious novels, 6 historical novels along with serving as a playwright in 21 plays.

An interesting and rare aspect about Karunanidhi would be his love for arts and cinema as he taken part in many prominent film launches, audio release functions and numerous award ceremonies.

Kalaignar Karunanidhi

Kalaignar had also penned the screenplay for American director Ellis R. Dungan’s last film, Manthiri Kumari.

Mani Ratnam’s Iruvar starring Mohanlal, Prakash Raj, Aishwarya Rai and Tabu is said to be a film based on the relationship between Karunanidhi and MGR.