KTS Padannayil, the veteran Malayalam film and theatre actor, died on Thursday in Kochi, Kerala. He was 88.
Padannayil had been undergoing treatment at a private hospital in Kochi for age-related ailments since July 19.
The actor, also known as Kochupadannayil Thai Subramanian, was born in Thrippunithura in 1933. He began his career in theatre and performed in more than a thousand stages with various drama troupes, including Jayabharath Nithakalalaya, Chenagassery Geetha, Vaikom Malavika, Kollam Tuna and Attingal Padmasree.
Padannayil made his film debut in 1995 with the Jayaram-starrer Aniyan Bava Chettan Bava, a Malayalam comedy drama directed by Rajasenan. Padannayil and Jayaram also collaborated on a few other films such as Swapna Lokathe Balabhaskaran (1996) and Adyathe Kanmani (1995).
In an interview with the Indian Cinema Gallery in 2020, Padannayil had said that director Rajasenan introduced him to the world of cinema and also gave him opportunities in five of his hit films, including Adyathe Kanmani, Dilliwaala Raajakumaaran and Kadhaanaayakan. With around 50 years of theatre experience, Padannayil felt there was a lot of difference between performing on stage and for a film. “We do not have the concept of a retake in theatre as it is a live performance, whereas in cinema, there is scope for performing again. So acting in theatre needs more perfection,” he said.
Padannayil acted in around 60 films in his career and was part of many hit films like Sreekrishnapurathe Nakshathrathilakam, Vaamanapuram Bus Route, Kunjiramayanam, Rakshadhirakari Baiju, Amar Akbar Antony, Oru Muthassi Gadha and Laughing Apartment Near Girinagar.
He also acted in television serials such as Thenum Vayambum (Surya TV), Kuttikale oru Kaliparayam (Kochu TV), Thatteem Mutteem (Mazhavil Manorama), Pakida Pakida Pambaram (Doordarshan), and Sanmassullavarkku Samadhanam (Asianet).
According to an article in The Hindu, despite working as an actor in cinema and theatre, Padannayil did not shut down his murukkan kada, a petty shop in Kannankulangara in Thrippunithura. The shop provided him with a regular earning as there was little guarantee for a steady income from the film industry, the actor had said.
“Padannayil portrayed characters that reflected the realities of life on screen,” Chief Minister of Kerala Pinarayi Vijayan said while condoling the death of the actor.
Several members of the Malayalam film industry, including actors Prithviraj Sukumaran, Unni Mukundan, Vineeth Sreenivasan and producer Anto Joseph took to their social media handles to pay tribute to Padannayil.
Padannayil is survived by his wife Ramani, three sons, Syam, Sannan, Saljan, and daughter Swapna.