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She was an Indian film director, screenwriter and actor, One of the most prolific filmmakers of Telugu cinema.
Kasinadhuni Viswanath was born in Repalle of Guntur district, Andhra Pradesh. His parents are Kasinadhuni Subramanyam and Kasinadhuni Saraswathy (Saraswathamma) and his ancestral roots come from Pedapulivarru, Andhra Pradesh, a small village on the banks of River Krishna. Kasinadhuni is his family name, Viswanath is his given name.
Viswanath studied Intermediate from Guntur Hindu College, and holds a BSc degree from Andhra Christian College of Andhra University.
He began his career as a sound recordist at Vauhini Studios in Madras, where his father was an associate. There, he apprenticed under the guidance of A Krishnan, who was the Head of Sound Engineering at Vauhini. Viswanath and A Krishnan developed a close rapport and later after the former made the transition into film direction, he would always bounce ideas off the latter. Viswanath made his entry into film direction at Annapurna Pictures under Adurthi Subba Rao and K. Ramnoth.
In 1951 he started as an assistant director in the Telugu-Tamil Film Pathala Bhairavi. In 1965, Viswanath debuted as a director with Telugu film Aatma Gowravam, which won the Nandi Award for Best Feature Film of the year. Viswanath followed it up with drama films Chelleli Kapuram (1971), Sarada (1973), O Seeta Katha (1974) and Jeevana Jyoti (1975) which are women-centric films. It was in Siri Siri Muvva (1976) that the artistic touch in his craft first became visible.
Viswanath has made many films dealing with a wide range of human and social issues: Saptapadi, Sirivennela, Sutradharulu, Subhalekha, Sruthilayalu, Subha Sankalpam, Aapadbandhavudu, Swayam Krushi, and Swarnakamalam have lead characters representing different strata of society, meticulously etched to suit the larger picture.
𝐀𝐬𝐬𝐨𝐜𝐢𝐚𝐭𝐢𝐨𝐧 𝐰𝐢𝐭𝐡 𝐏𝐨𝐨𝐫𝐧𝐨𝐝𝐚𝐲𝐚 𝐂𝐫𝐞𝐚𝐭𝐢𝐨𝐧𝐬
Edida Nageswara Rao founded "Poornodaya Movie Creations", which encouraged Viswanath to make aesthetic films.Poornodaya has produced several of Viswanath's films like Sankarabharanam, Swatimutyam, Saagarasangamam, Sutradharulu, and Aapadbandhavudu. Most of these films were dubbed into Russian and were screened at the Moscow Film Festival.
𝐂𝐚𝐫𝐞𝐞𝐫 𝐢𝐧 𝐁𝐨𝐥𝐥𝐲𝐰𝐨𝐨𝐝
Viswanath has also directed Hindi language films such as Sargam (1979), Kaamchor (1982), Shubh Kaamna (1983), Jaag Utha Insan (1984), Sur Sangam (1985), Sanjog (1985), Eeshwar (1989), Sangeet (1992) and Dhanwan (1993). Some of these films (especially his collaboration with actress Jaya Prada) have been super hits at the box office.
𝐂𝐚𝐫𝐞𝐞𝐫 𝐢𝐧 𝐀𝐜𝐭𝐢𝐧𝐠
In 1995, Viswanath debuted as an actor with Telugu film Subha Sankalpam. As a character actor, he has appeared in works such as Vajram (1995), Kalisundam Raa (2000), Narasimha Naidu (2001), Nuvvu Leka Nenu Lenu (2002), Santosham (2002), Seema Simham (2002), Tagore (2003), Lakshmi Narasimha (2004), Swarabhishekam (2004), Aadavari Matalaku Arthale Verule (2007), Athadu (2005), and Pandurangadu (2008), and Devasthanam (2012). He essayed characters in Tamil works such as Kuruthipunal (1995), Mugavaree (1999), Kakkai Siraginilae (2000), Bagavathi (2002), Pudhiya Geethai (2003), Yaaradi Nee Mohini (2008), Rajapattai (2011), Singam II (2013), Lingaa (2014) and Uttama Villain (2015).
𝐀𝐰𝐚𝐫𝐝 𝐚𝐧𝐝 𝐑𝐞𝐜𝐨𝐠𝐧𝐢𝐭𝐢𝐨𝐧
Viswanath receiving Dadasaheb Phalke Award from President Pranab Mukherjee in 2017
Padma Shri (1992), Government of India
1981 – Prize of the Public at the Besançon Film Festival of France
1982–87 – Special Mention – Moscow International Film Festival
2014 – Gulf Andhra Award for Life Time Achievement in Cinema – U.A.E.
National Film Awards
2017 – Dadasaheb Phalke Award for lifetime achievement in cinema.
1980 – National Film Award for Best Popular Film Providing Wholesome Entertainment – Sankarabharanam
1982 – Nargis Dutt Award for Best Feature Film on National Integration – Saptapadi
1987 – Best Feature Film in Telugu – Swathi Muthyam
1990 – Best Feature Film in Telugu – Sutradharulu
2005 – Best Feature Film in Telugu – Swarabhishekam
Viswanath died on 2 February 2023, at the age of 92 in Hyderabad.
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