This article needs a plot summary.(August 2021)
|Directed by|| A. V. Meiyappan |
A. T. Krishnaswamy
|Written by||A. T. Krishnaswamy|
|Produced by||A. V. Meiyappan|
|Cinematography||P. V. Krishna Iyer|
|Edited by|| M. V. Raman |
M. K. Ramani
|Music by||T. M. Rajagopal Sharma|
Sri Valli is a 1945 Tamil-language film co-directed by A. V. Meiyappan and produced by him under Pragathi Studios. It was co-directed by A. T. Krishnaswamy who also wrote the script. The film stars T. R. Mahalingam and Kumari Rukmani. Sri Valli revolves around the romance between Muruga and Valli, a tribal girl. The rest of the story shows how Valli wins the heart of Murugan.
Sri Valli was the first Tamil film to introduce playback singing for the first time through lip synchronisation and also became the first film in which the dialogues were released in Gramaphone records. T. M. Rajagopal Sharma and R. Sudarsanam respectively composed the film's music and P. V. Krishna Iyer served as the cinematographer. The film was edited by the duo M. V. Raman, while V. M. Vatturkar and S. Ammaiyappan were the film's art directors.
Sri Valli was released on 13 April 1945 with a final reel length of 3,325 metres (10,909 ft). Upon release, Sri Valli received critical acclaim and went on to become a commercially successful venture at box office. It is considered to be a breakthrough film for both T. R. Mahalingam and Kumari Rukmini.
After releasing the Tamil dubbed version of Kannada film Satya Harischandra (1943), A. V. Meiyappan decided to direct a film based on the folk tale of Valli. A. T. Krishnaswamy who co-directed the film wrote the script. Prior to the commencement of shooting, Meiyappan and his wife visited key Lord Murugan temples to seek forgiveness if by oversight makes any mistakes in any of the scenes from the film.  The film was made on a budget of ₹2 lakh (worth ₹15 crore in 2021 prices) and returned 900 per cent on investment for AVM.
Initially Meiyappan had Thyagaraja Bagavathar in mind for the lead role.  T. R. Mahalingam who earlier acted as child artist in Meiyappan's Nandakumar (1938) was signed on for the lead role and also as a part of contract that he should not act in any film or play until the completion of the film.    For the titular character, Vasundhara Devi was initially considered and she insisted on selecting the lead actor for herself. After many names were suggested, she rejected them all and opted out.  Kumari Rukmini who earlier appeared as child artist in films like Balayogini (1937) was signed as Meiyappan felt that her eyes will be a big attraction.   T. R. Ramachandran, N. S. Krishnan and T. A. Mathuram were selected to appear in supporting roles. 
The film was shot at the Pragathi Studio and the outdoor scenes were picturised in and around Adyar, including the Theosophical Society premises.  The four-year old elephant was brought from Trichur for one of the characters. Sami Iyer who owned the elephant refused to take any money and allowed the elephant to act in the film.  After completing the film, Meiyappan saw the first copy and was satisfied with the songs sung by Mahalingam, but was not satisfied with the singing of Rukmini in songs. Meiyappan decided to record the voice of Periyanayaki in place of Rukmini. It was recorded by sound engineer V. S. Raghavan through post synchronisation method.   Kumari Rukmini did not accept the voice of Periyanayaki for her as she felt that the film came out well, she insisted on cancelling the three film agreement which she had signed as part of compensation. AVM who was keen on receiving success cancelled the agreement.  The final length of the film was 3,325 metres (10,909 ft). 
The original story was based on a folk tale which describes the romance between Lord Muruga and Valli, a tribal girl. Initially exhibited as stage plays, the story was developed into a silent film titled Valli Thirumanam in 1921.  It was followed by another silent release, Sri Subramanyam in 1930.  N. D. Sarpotdhar remade the film the same year for the "Aryan Film Company" and named it as Subramaniam. Another version titled Valli Kalyanam released the same year where Sundar Rao Nadkarni enacted the lead role. 
The first talkie version of the story was produced by Samikannu Vincent in 1933. Named Valli Thirumanam, the film was shot in Calcutta and directed by P. V. Rao.  T. P. Rajalakshmi played the role of Valli in the which ultimately became a box-office success. Sixteen years later after the 1945 film, a colour Sri Valli (1961 film) based on the same story was produced by Narasu Studios. It had Sivaji Ganesan and Padmini as the lead pair.  T. R. Mahalingam who played Muruga in the previous version was given the role of Narada in this film. 
The music was composed by TR Rajagopal Sharma and R Sudarsanam respectively while lyrics were written by Papanasam Sivan and Raja Gopal Iyer. All the songs well received especially "Kaayatha Kaanagathe".  The song "Kaayatha Kaanagathe" is based on Bhairavi raga,  while "Ellorayum Pole" is based on Shuddha Saveri. 
The film was released on 13 April 1945.  During the re-release of the film, Meiyappan replaced the vocals of Periyanayaki in place of Rukmini and included it in new set of prints.   The film ran for 55 weeks in Central Theatre, Madurai.  In his book Pride of Tamil Cinema, 1931 to 2013, G. Dhananjayan stated that the film's success was "largely boosted by TR Mahalingam and Periyanayaki's excellent songs".  Randor Guy of The Hindu wrote that the film was remembered for "the melodious music and hit songs of Mahalingam and Periyanayaki". 
Sri Valli is remembered for the first Tamil film to use playback singing through post synchronisation as the original audio of the songs erased and being replaced with different audio. It also became the first Tamil film for which the dialogues of the film being released in Gramaphone records.  The film became a breakthrough for the lead pair Mahalingam and Rukmini and playback singer Periyanayaki. 
Kalathur Kannamma is a 1960 Indian Tamil-language romantic drama film directed by A. Bhimsingh and written by Javar Seetharaman. The film stars Gemini Ganesh, Savitri Ganesh and Kamal Haasan. It revolves around a couple — a wealthy zamindar's son and a farmer's daughter — who are separated due to circumstances, while their innocent son is forced to grow up in an orphanage.
AVM Productions is an Indian film production studio founded by A. V. Meiyappan. It is the final oldest survived studio in India. The filming studios are located in Vadapalani, Chennai. It has produced over 300 films in Tamil, Telugu, Kannada, Malayalam and Hindi cinema. AVM has introduced numerous actors in Southern industries, some of the prominent actors are Sivaji Ganesan, Rajkumar, S. S. Rajendran, Vyjayanthimala, Kamal Haasan and many more. The AVM Studios besides the shooting floors, has recording, dubbing and a preview theatre. The complex also houses facilities for production and post production processing.
Thenkarai Ramakrishna Mahalingam born in Sholavandan Thenkarai was an Indian actor, singer and music composer of the 1940s and 1950s. He was known for his melodious songs mostly based on romantic or devotional themes.
Avichi Meiyappa Chettiar, also known as A. V. Meiyappan, A. V. Meiyappa Chettiar or AVM, was an Indian film producer, director and philanthropist who established AVM Productions in Vadapalani, Chennai. He is widely regarded as one of the pioneers of Tamil cinema, and one of three movie moguls of the South Indian film industry along with S. S. Vasan and L. V. Prasad. His production company AVM Productions is the only production company in Kollywood to run successfully for five decades and three generations.
Naam Iruvar is a 1947 Indian Tamil-language drama film directed and produced by A. V. Meiyappan. It is based on the play Thyaga Ullam written by Pa. Neelakantan. The film stars T. R. Mahalingam and T. A. Jayalakshmi. It was released on 12 January 1947 and became a success.
Sivakavi is a 1943 Indian Tamil-language film directed, initially, by P. K. Raja Sandow and later, S. M. Sriramulu Naidu. It starred M. K. Thyagaraja Bhagavathar, S. Jayalakshmi, Serukalathur Sama, Thirupurambal, T. R. Rajakumari, N. S. Krishnan and T. A. Mathuram. The film's screenplay was written by Thiru Muruga Kirubanandha Variyar. The film was shot at Central Studios and released by Pakshiraja Films in Coimbatore. The film was released on 10 April 1943.
Ore Iravu is a 1951 Indian Tamil-language film directed by P. Neelakantan and co-written by him and C. N. Annadurai. Produced by AVM Productions, it is based on Annadurai's play of the same name. The film stars K. R. Ramasamy, reprising his role from the play. It was released on 11 April 1951 and received well by critics, but failed commercially.
Vaazhkai (transl. Life) is a 1949 Indian Tamil-language social guidance film produced and directed by A. V. Meiyappan through AVM Productions. It stars Vyjayanthimala in her screen debut with M. S. Draupadi, T. R. Ramachandran and S. V. Sahasranamam forms an ensemble cast along with many actors appearing in other significant roles.
Kumari Kamala is an Indian dancer and actress. Initially featured as a child dancer, Kamala appeared in almost 100 Tamil, Hindi, Telugu and Kannada films throughout her career. In the 1970s, she became a teacher of the Vazhuvoor style of dance in which she specialises.
Utthama Puthiran is the 1940 Tamil language film directed by T. R. Sundaram. P. U. Chinnappa, M. V. Rajamma, T. S. Balaiah played the lead roles. It was the first Tamil film in which the leading actor P. U. Chinnappa played a double role.
Sri Valli is a 1961 Indian Tamil-language Hindu mythological film directed by T. R. Ramanna. Based on the folk tale of Valli, the film stars Sivaji Ganesan and Padmini, supported by T. R. Mahalingam, E. R. Sahadevan, C. K. Saraswathi and J. P. Chandrababu. This film was taken in Gevacolor. It was released on 1 July 1961 and wasn't successful. The film also featured Lakshmi in her on-screen debut as the child version of the titular character.
Gnana Soundari is a 1948 Indian Tamil-language film written, produced and directed by the duo F. Nagoor and Joseph Thaliath Jr. The film stars T. R. Mahalingam, M. V. Rajamma in lead roles with D. Balasubramaniam, Sivabhagyam, Lalitha and Padmini playing supporting roles. The film revolves around Gnana Soundari, daughter of King Dharmar who is ill-treated by her stepmother Lenal. In order to get rid of her, Lenal sends her to a forest. In the process, Soundari loses both of her hands and she gets saved by prince Pilenthiran.
Nandakumar is a 1938 Indian Tamil-language film directed by Keshav Rao Dhaibar. Produced by A. V. Meiyappan, the mythological film features a T. P. Rajalakshmi, C. V. V. Panthulu, and T. S. Rajalakshmi in lead roles. T. R. Mahalingam and T. R. Ramachandran made their cinematic debuts through the film.
Vedhala Ulagam is a 1948 Indian Tamil-language fantasy film directed and produced by A. V. Meiyappan, and written by P. Neelakantan. Adapted from the play of the same name by Pammal Sambandha Mudaliar, the film stars T. R. Mahalingam, K. Sarangapani, Mangalam, K. R. Chellam and C. T. Rajakantham. It was released on 11 August 1948 and became a commercial success.
Lavangi is a 1946 Indian Tamil-language film directed and produced by Y. V. Rao and written by P. R. Narayanan. It stars Y. V. Rao, Kumari Rukmani, B. R. Panthulu, B. Jayamma, K. Sarangapani, K. R. Chellam and T. R. Ramachandran. The film features music by C. R. Subbu Raman.
Jothi is an Indian Tamil language film directed by T. R. Raghunath and was released in 1939. It is the life story of Saint Ramalinga Swamigal popularly known as Vallalar. No print of the film is known to survive, making it a lost film.
Kumari Rukmani, also known as Kumari Rukmini, was an Indian actress and dancer. She has acted in about 100 films in Tamil, Telugu and Hindi languages.
P. A. Periyanayaki was an Indian playback singer and actress who worked mainly in Tamil-language films. She also performed stage concerts as a Carnatic singer.
Alli Arjuna is a 1935 Indian Tamil-language Hindu mythological film produced and directed by A. V. Meiyappan in his debut. It is based on the play of the same name, revolving around Arjuna from the Hindu epic Mahabharata. The film stars K. S. Ananthanarayana Iyer and K. R. Kanthimathi Bai, and became a box-office bomb.
Kambayanatham Rangaswami Kanakavalli, known professionally as K. R. Chellam, was an Indian actress who appeared in Tamil language films.