Dadasaheb Phalke awardee and renowned filmmaker Kasinadhuni Viswanath died at a private hospital here. He was 92.
Viswanath was unwell for some time and was suffering from age-related issues, sources said. He passed away at the hospital around midnight Thursday.
Viswanath, popularly known as ‘Kalatapasvi’, was born in February 1930 in Andhra Pradesh.
A prominent name not just in Telugu cinema but also in Tamil and Hindi films, he became the 48th recipient of the Dadasaheb Phalke award, the highest recognition in Indian cinema. He was conferred with the award for the year 2016.
Telangana Chief Minister K Chandrasekhar Rao expressed his condolences over the death of Viswanath, a release from the Chief Minister’s Office said.
Viswanath, who started his journey as a sound artiste, directed award-winning films such as “Sankarabharanam”, “Sagara Sangamam”, “Swati Mutyam”, “Saptapadi”, “Kaamchor”, “Sanjog” and “Jaag Utha Insaan” in his long career that included an equally successful stint in front of the camera.
His other honours include Padma Shri in 1992, five National Awards, 20 Nandi Awards (given by the Andhra Pradesh government) and 10 Filmfare trophies including the Lifetime Achievement award.
Viswanath, who made 50 movies since 1965, was a celebrated filmmaker in the Telugu film industry. He had also been active in Tamil and Hindi cinema.
He debuted as a director with “Aatma Gowravam”, which starred Akkineni Nageswara Rao and won the Nandi Award for the best feature film.
The filmmaker followed it with “Chelleli Kapuram”, “O Seeta Katha”, “Jeevana Jyoti” and “Sarada”.
Viswanath also ventured into mainstream acting, working in movies like “Swarabhishekam” (which he directed as well), “Pandurangadu”, “Narasimha Naidu”, “Lakshmi Narasimha” and “Seemasimham”, “Kuruthipunal”, “Kakkai Siraginilae” and “Bagavathi”, among others.
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