New Delhi, April 29 (IANS) Veteran Tamil filmmaker K. Balachander, the director of hits like 'Ek Duuje Ke Liye' and Sindhu Bhairavi' and who has won numerous national and Filmfare awards, has been conferred the Dadasaheb Phalke Award Friday for 2010 for his outstanding contribution to the growth and development of Indian cinema, it was announced here Friday.
The award, given on the recommendations of a committee of eminent persons, consists of a Swarn Kamal, a cash prize of Rs.10 lakhs and a shawl.
Balachander will be conferred the honour by President Pratibha Patil at the National Film Awards later this year, the dates for which are yet to be announced.
Multifaceted Balachander, 81, has been a director, screenplaywriter and producer and has written, directed and produced more than 100 films in Tamil, Telugu, Hindi and Kannada in his 45-year-long career.
Known for his distinct filmmaking style, Balachander focused on unusual or complicated inter-personal relationships and social themes.
He also has the uncanny knack of spotting talent and has been responsible for bringing into limelight many stars of the present day, including Rajnikanth, Kamal Haasan, Prakashraaj and Vivek.
Born in Thanjavur District, Tamil Nadu in July 1930, Balachander came into prominence as a playwright with his dynamic plays like 'Major Chandrakanth', 'Server Sundaram', 'Naanal' and 'Neerkumizhi'. These plays received critical acclaim.
He entered the film industry in 1965 with 'Neerkumizhi' and since then has directed and produced a number of movies. Six of them - 'Iru Kodugal', 'Apporva Raagangal', 'Thaneer Thaneer', 'Achamillai Achamillai', 'Rudraveena' and 'Oru Veedu Iru Vaasal' - have won many National Awards.
Some of the prominent films he has directed include 'Apoorva Raagagal', 'Avargal', '47 Natkal', 'Sindhu Bhairavi', Hindi film 'Ek Duuje Ke Liye', 'Maro Charithra', and 'Rudraveena' in Telugu and 'Bekiyalli Aralida Hoovu' in Kannada.
For the last few years, Balachander has also turned his attention to the small screen and has brought to it the same perfection and intensity that he exhibited on the big screen.
He was conferred the Padma Shri in 1987 and was honoured with the title 'Kalaimamani' by the Tamil Nadu Government in 1973. He has also won the Golden Nandi award and Silver Nandi awards from the Andhra Pradesh government and has also won numerous Filmfare Best Director awards.