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Malayalam Movies and Songs

T Damodaran

Born15th October, 1935
Died28th March, 2012
CareerDialogue (49), Screenplay (44), Story (38), Cast (6)

T Damodaran who was born to Thachambalathu Choyikutty and Unniyamma was scriptwriter who penned several hits during the eighties which was the golden era of Malayalam cinema.

Damodaran had his schooling at Kozhikode Meenchantha School and Chalappuram High School. He went on to complete his studies at the Guruvayoorappan College and Farook College (Physical Education). Passionate about football, Damodaran formed a team with friends and relatives and called it Team Brothers. This team went on to become a rage with a whole generation. At the same time, he also became actively involved in the cultural scene with the plays he wrote and acted in, for the Meenchantha Kalasagar Music Club. This troupe, which was lead by sympathizers of the undivided Communist Party, performed dramas in tile factories and spinning mills.

Deviating from the norm of the day of having male actors portraying female roles, Damodaran introduced Machadu Vasanthi to the Malayalam theater scene. To him, also goes the credit of introducing Kuttyedathi Vilasini.

Damodaran stuck to his artistic pursuits even when he joined as the Physical Education instructor in the Beypore High School. He started the ‘Slapstick Comedy Troupe’ along with fellow theater artists Kuthiravattom Pappu, RK Nair and Kunjava. Armed with just a ‘chapplankatta’, they aimed to satirize contemporary society. The performers on stage included Nellikode Bhaskaran, Vasupradeep, Damodaran and Kunjava. The group adopted a style where characters and actors played more than one role.

Damodaran entered the field of professional theater for the first time through Raja Theaters. Damodaran also wrote plays for organizations such as the Rotary Club and for the Radio.

‘Vazhiyambalam’ which brought together stalwarts such as MT, KT, Thikkodian and Damodaran was a unique landmark of Malayalam theater. This also won him a place in the Malabar Amateur-Professional theater scene.

It was in 1965 when he was acting in ‘Shyamalachechi’ that he ventured into cinema. This close friend of MT later went on to act in ‘Nagarame Nanni’ and Olavum Theeravum’ among others. Director Hariharan who recognized Damodaran’s magic touch when it came to writing, through his plays such as ‘Yugasandhya’ and ‘Udanja Vigrahangal’, invited Damodaran to write the screenplay for his movie ‘Love Marriage’.

Several movies came as a result of this partnership. ‘Manasa Vacha Karmana’ by Grihalakshmi Productions, for which he partnered with Sherif for the screenplay was directed by IV Sasi. This film was responsible for one of the most successful pairs that rewrote the history of Malayalam cinema.

The IV Sasi-Damodaran duo gave such hits as Angadi, Ee Nadu and Iniyenkilum, which mercilessly criticized the evils in Malayalam society. These movies set off a new trend in the Malayalam film industry. Damodaran’s mighty pen scripted the initial roles which defined later day superstars such as Jayan, Mammootty and Mohan Lal. This is also precisely the reason why Damodaran was accused of paving the way for the unhealthy rise of superstars in the Malayalam film industry.

Damodaran later worked with a long list of directors including Bharathan, Priyadarshan, Shaji Kailas and Viji Thampi. He also wrote the screenplay for Maniratnam’s only Malayalam film ‘Unaroo’. His last screenplay was the one he wrote for VM Vinu’s ‘Yes Your Honour'.

T Damodaran passed away on March 28, 2012. He is survived by his wife Pushpa and children Deedi (Scriptwriter), Simna and Reshmi.

Prepared by: Remitha Satheesh


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