Kappalotiya Thamizhan (1961)

 ●  Tamil ● 3 hrs 17 mins

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Biographical film on the life of Va. Vu. Chidambaram Pillai (Ganesan), a nationalist businessman who launched the Swadeshi Steam Navigation Company to break the British monopoly in shipping at the turn of the century, which earned him the honorific title Kappalotiya Thamizhan or ‘The Tamil who launched a ship’. An important film in Ganesan’s post-DMK project of wrapping himself in nationalist colours and one of Tamil cinema’s rare excursions into recent history. Set in Tirunelveli district, it features cultural celebrities like Subramaniya Siva (Shanmugham) and the poet Bharati (Subbaiah) whose poems were set to music and became popular songs. The mandatory duets and romance are updated via references to historical events like Vanchinathan’s (Ganesh) killing of the British collector Ashe, the burning of imported cloth, the Tuticorin riots and the Harvey Mills strike. The launching of the first Tamil ship is the climax. In line with the film’s political ambitions, the dialogue attempts to move away from the high-flown rhetoric of e.g. Elangovan’s 40s style by having some characters speak Tirunelveli dialect, but most still declaim their lines in written, theatrical Tamil. Rukmini plays the hero’s wife.

Cast: Sivaji Ganesan

Crew: BR Panthulu (Director), WR Subba Rao (Director of Photography), G Ramanathan (Music Director)

Rating: U (India)

Genres: Drama, History

Release Dates: 07 Nov 1961 (India)

Tamil Name: கப்பலோட்டிய தமிழன்

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as V. O. Chidambaram Pillai
Supporting Actor
as Ulaganatha Pillai
as Madaswami
as Vanchinathan
as Rayar
as Meenatchi Sundaram
as Vaduguraman
as Sub-Collector Ash
as Collector Vinch
as Subramania Bharathiyar
as Vanchinathan's wife Ponnammal
as Kannamma (Madaswami's lover)
as Subramaniya Siva
as Sudanthiradevi
as Sangal

Direction

Director

Production

Producer
Production Company

Writers

Screenplay Writer
Story Writer
Dialogue Writer

Camera and Electrical

Director of Photography

Art

Art Director

Editorial

Editor
Film Type:
Feature Film
Language:
Tamil
Colour Info:
Black & White
Frame Rate:
24 fps
Aspect Ratio:
2.35 : 1
Stereoscopy:
No
Music Label: Saregama India Limited
01 
03:27
02 
03:41
03 
02:41
04 
03:09
Music Director: G Ramanathan
Playback Singer: Thiruchi Loganathan
05 
02:41
Music Director: G Ramanathan
Playback Singer: P Susheela
06 
03:45
07 
03:44
Music Director: G Ramanathan
Playback Singer: PB Srinivas, P Susheela
08 
03:17
09 
02:35
10 
03:44
11 
02:18