Kannada film director S K Bhagavan no more

03:20 PM Feb 20, 2023 | Team Udayavani |

Bengaluru: Sandalwood’s legendary director Shrinivasa Krishna Iyengar Bhagavan passed away on February 20. He was 89.


He was suffering from age-related ailment and was being treated at a private hospital. According to sources close to the family, his mortal remains will be kept at his residence for final viewing.

S.K Bhagavan started acting on stage dramas with Hirannaiah Mithra Mandali at a very young age. He began his film career as an assistant to Kanagal Prabhakar Shastri in 1956 through the film Bhagyodaya and then went on to direct his debut movie ‘Sandhya Raga’ in 1966 though officially its direction was credited to A.C. Narasimha Murthy.

However, the next year, he was credited as the co-director of ‘Rajadurgada Rahasya’ (1967) alongside A C Narasimha Murthy. He also appeared in the role of the antagonist in the 1968 movie Bangalore Mail.

Bhagavan’s official directorial debut happened when he co-directed Jedara Bale (1968), starring Dr Rajkumar, with Dorai Raj under the name Dorai–Bhagavan. Thus becoming the first director to make James Bond-style movies in Kannada.


The pair’s cooperation with Dr. Rajkumar was solidified further by the legendary 1971 film ‘Kasturi Nivasa’. He also directed the film Yarivanu, which was created to highlight the acting abilities of Puneeth Rajkumar as a child actor.

In Kannada, ʼEradu Kanasu’, ʼBayalu Daariʼ, ʼJeevana Chaitraʼ, ʼGali Maatuʼ, ʼHosa Belaku’, ʼOperation Diamond Rocketʼ, ʼGoa dalli CID999ʼ are some of his hit films.

Following the death of Dorai Raj in 2000, Bhagavan stopped making movies. He returned to filmmaking in 2019 with Aduva Gombe, starring Ananth Nag and Sanchari Vijay. However, it failed to impress the audience.

Condolences pour in:

Condolences poured in from all quarters at the passing of the legendary film director. Taking to Twitter, Karnataka Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai wrote: “ I was very saddened to hear the news of renowned director of the Kannada film industry Shri S. K. Bhagavan’s death. I pray for his soul. I pray that God gives strength to his family to bear this pain.”

“Dorai-Bhagavan duo has given many tasteful films to Kannada cinema.  Along with his friend Dorai Raj, he directed 55 films including ‘Kasthuri Nivasa’, ‘Eradu Soyam’, ‘Bayalu Daari’, ‘Giri Kanye’, and ‘Hosa Belaku’ starring Dr. Rajkumar. Om Shanti.”

Politician B.K. Hariprasad also paid rich tributes to S K Bhagawan. He wrote, “I am deeply saddened to hear the news of demise of renowned Kannada director Shri SK Bhagwan. He was the glory of Kannada film industry & made great films based on novels suited for family audiences. May the departed soul rest in peace. I share the pain of his family & fans.”


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