After working in a few movies in other languages, Balu Mahendra ventured into Tamil industry as a cinematographer in Mullum Malarum. Debuting in Tamil films as a director in Azhiyadha Kolangal, cinematographer turned director went on to churn out wonders like, Veedu, Moodu Pani, Moondram Pirai, Neengal Kettavai, Un Kannil Neer Vazhindal, Rettai Vaal Kuruvi, Vanna Vanna Pookal, Marupadiyum, Sathi Leelavathi and Athu Oru Kana Kaalam. Famous for his ‘natural lighting’ set-up and minimal characters, Balu Mahendra’s films are generally centered on human emotions and relationships portraying their intricacies and complications.
The recipient of 6 National Awards - including two for Best Cinematography, few state awards by the Governments of Kerala, Andhra Pradesh, and Karnataka - he is considered as the doyen of Tamil cinema.
Director Balu Mahendra established that creativity transcends all barriers including age when he directed and featured himself in his swan song Thalaimuraigal. This auteur has left behind a rich legacy in the form of his poetic films for the audience to nurture and enjoy.