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Apoorva Sagodharargal (1949 film)

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Apoorva Sagodharargal
File:Apoorva Sagodharargal (1949 film).jpg
Film Poster
Directed byAcharya
Produced byK. J. Mahadevan
S. S. Vasan
Screenplay byAcharya, Sangu,
Kittu, Naina,
Subbu, Ki. Ra.
StarringM. K. Radha
P. Bhanumathi
Music byRajeswara Rao
M. D. Parthasarathy
R. Vaidyanathan
CinematographyKamal Ghosh
Edited byChandru
Distributed byGemini Pictures Circuit Ltd.
Release date
  • 21 October 1949 (1949-October-21) (India)

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Apoorva Sagodharargal (English: Strange Brothers) is a 1949 Indian Tamil-language action film directed by Acharya. The film which was adapted from Alexandre Dumas' 1844 novella The Corsican Brothers stars M. K. Radha and P. Bhanumathi in the lead roles with Nagendra Rao and Suryaprabha playing supporting roles. The film revolves around the two lookalike brothers who were separated during childhood by their cruel uncle who murdered his parents, rest of the film shows how two brothers join together in avenging the death of their parents. It was simultaneously produced in Tamil, Telugu and Hindi languages by Gemini Studios. The Telugu version Apoorva Sahodarulu (English: Strange Brothers) was directed by C. Pullaiah, and the Hindi version Nishan (English: Mark) by S. S. Vasan.


Mahendra Bhoopathi and Marthandan are rival kings. When Bhoopathi's wife gives birth to conjoined twins, Dr. Nanjappa separates them skillfully. In a surprise attack, Marthandan and his men set fire to Bhoopathi's fort thinking that the entire Bhoopathi clan perishes. But the good doctor has taken the babies to the safety of his house. And thereafter the elder twin Vijayan grows up in the city, while the younger twin Vikraman is brought up in the forest by the loyal Marudhu. When they are 25 years old, the doctor sends for them and introduces them to each other and makes them aware of their history. The twins swear to avenge the dastardly killing of their father and restore the glory of their kingdom. Meanwhile, Vijayan saves the beautiful Kanchana from the aging yet lust-filled Marthandan and his men. Vijayan and Kanchana fall in love in due course. Problems arise between the brothers in the forest, as Vikraman too falls for Kanchana. And being the younger of the conjoined twins, Vikraman aches with frustrating feelings of physical desire whenever Vijayan and Kanchana are together. Not wanting to be the cause for the brothers turning against each other and in order to enable them to reach their avowed objective without further distraction, Kanchana leaves Vijayan in the forest, only to fall straight into the clutches of Marthandan. The rescue of Kanchana, and Marthandan getting his retribution forms the rest of the exciting tale.


Cast according to the opening credits of the film and the songbook:[2]


Apoorva Sagodharargal was adapted from Alexandra Duma's novel The Corsican Brothers. Gregory Ratoff adapted the film and Douglas Fairbanks Jr played the dual role of the conjoined twins Lucien and Mario Franchi.[3] The film became successful which inspired Vasan to adapt the film in Tamil. TG Raghavachari alias Acharya lawyer turned film maker was selected to direct the film. M. K. Radha was selected to play the lead characters with Bhanumathi playing the lead actress.[3] For the negative character, Vasan approached P. U. Chinnappa who refused fearing his image with Kannada actor Nagendra Rao being finalised for the role.[3] "Stunt" Somu who did the stunt choreography appeared in the role of Marudhu, close associate of Bhoopathi.[4] This film was often considered an unofficial sequel to Chandralekha.[5]


The music was composed by Rajeswara Rao, M. D. Parthasarathy and R. Vaidyanathan and lyrics were written by Kothamangalam Subbu and V. Seetharaman. The song "Laddu Laddu" sung by Bhanumathi was well received.[4][3] A duet meant for the Hindi version was composed on the piano by Rajeswara Rao, and Vasan liked it so much he wanted it for the Tamil version too. This song was added after the shoot was over.[3]

No. Song Singer/s Lyricist Duration(m:ss)
1 Enga Rasa Vanthan Chorus Kothamangalam Subbu
2 Thalelo Rajakumararkale Chorus
3 Maya Vinthaiyethane Chorus 3:54
4 Manum Mayilum Adum Solai P. Bhanumathi 2:55
5 Laddu Laddu Mittai Venumaa P. Bhanumathi
8 Manamohaname Vanavasame P. Bhanumathi
9 Aaha Aaduvene Geetham Paduvene P. Bhanumathi, T. A. Mothi
10 Odakkara Odakkara P. Bhanumathi, T. A. Mothi
11 Paradesame Pokathe P. Bhanumathi


Table of Apoorva Sagodharargal and its other versions:

Apoorva Sagodharargal (1949) (Tamil) Nishan (1949) (Hindi) Apoorva Sahodarulu (1950) (Telugu)[6]
Kanchana (P. Bhanumathi) Ranjana (Bhanumati) Kanchana (P. Bhanumathi)
Vijayasimhan, Vikramasimhan (M. K. Radha) Vijay Singh, Vikram Singh (Ranjan) Vijaya, Vikrama (M. K. Radha)
Marthandan (Nagendra Rao) Zorawar Singh (Nagendra Rao) Marthandavarma (Nagendra Rao)
Atappakkaran (Narayana Rao) Zorawar's Valet (Narayan Rao) Servant (Narayana Rao)
Doctor Nanjappa (G. Pattu) Doctor Shanker (J. S. Casshyap) Doctor Gaurinath (G. Pattu Iyer)
Jambu (V. P. S. Mani) Himmat (V. P. S. Mani) Shambhu (V. P. S. Mani)
Mahendra Bhoopathi (D. Balasubramanian) Mahendra Singh (D. Bal Subramaniam) Bhoopathi (D. Balasubramaniam)
Maragatham (Suryaprabha) Al Beli (Suryaprabha) Manikyam (Suryaprabha)
Neelaveni (Lakshmiprabha) Neelam (Mayabanerji) Neelaveni (Lakshmiprabha)
Rajeswari Devi (Venkumamba) Mahendra Singh's Wife (Venkumamba) Rani (Venkumamba)
Doctor's Sister (Krishna Bai) Doctor's Sister (Krishna Bai) Doctor's Sister (Krishna Bai)
Doctor's Relative (Shyam Sunder) Doctor's Brother in Law (Shyam Sunder) Doctor's Brother in Law (Shyam Sunder)
Shop Keeper (G. V. Sharma)
Maruthappa (Stunt Somu) Madho Singh (Balkrishna Kalla) Madhav Singh (Stunt Somu)
Rajasekharar (J. S. Casshyap) Raj Sekhar (G. Pattu Iyer) Rajasekharam (J. S. Casshyap)
Servant (Ramakrishna Rao) Messenger (Ram Krishna Rao) Messenger (Ramakrishna Rao)
Mayanti (Velayutham) Chandan (K. S. Sengar) Maraiah (Velayutham)
Soldiers (Vijaya Rao, Balaram, Anand,
T. S. B. Rao, Sampathkumar)
Mahendra Singh's Soldiers (Balram, T. S. B. Rao)
Zorawar's Soldiers (Vijay Rao, Anand, Sampat Kumar)
G. V. Sharma, Vijaya Rao, Balaram, T. S. B. Rao,
Sampath Kumar as Marthandavarma's Soldiers
Gemini Boys and Girls Gemini Boys and Girls Gemini Boys and Girls

Release and legacy[edit]

The film was released on 21 October 1949 with a reel length of 4,465 metres (14,649 ft) and received "U" (Universal) certificate from Central Board of Film Certification with a run time of 143 minutes.[1] The film was a major success both at the box-office and with the critics.[3] Dhananjayan praised M. K. Radha's acting as "finest and best in his career" and appreciated director Acharya for "bringing out the best performance from everyone and presenting an entertaining and engaging film".[7] Randor Guy of The Hindu wrote that the film "is remembered for the excellent performances of Bhanumathi and Nagendra Rao, and for the music".[3] The film was remade in Telugu as Apoorva Sahodarulu, with Radha reprising the character. It was also remade in Hindi as Nishan with Ranjan. Bhanumathi was the lead actress for all the three versions.[7]

The film introduced the concept of identical twins and their feelings and eventually became a trendsetter for similar themes. M. G. Ramachandran played the twins in a rehash of the film titled Neerum Neruppum, in 1971 which did well and this was remade as Gora Aur Kala in Hindi, starring Rajendra Kumar in 1972.[8] Later, the 1999 film Vaali, starring Ajithkumar also had a similar concept.[7]


  1. 1.0 1.1 Dhananjayan 2014, p. 81.
  2. அபூர்வ சகோதரர்கள் (song book) (in தமிழ்). Gemini Studios. 1949. Search this book on Amazon.com Logo.png
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 3.3 3.4 3.5 3.6 Randor Guy (27 June 2008). "Apoorva Sagodharargal". The Hindu. Retrieved 25 December 2019.
  4. 4.0 4.1 Dhananjayan 2014, p. 82.
  5. అపూర్వ సహోదరులు (song book) (in తెలుగు). Gemini Studios. 1951. Search this book on Amazon.com Logo.png
  6. 7.0 7.1 7.2 Dhananjayan 2014, p. 83.
  7. Randor Guy (17 March 2011). "A Trailblazer". The Hindu. Retrieved 25 December 2019.

Further reading[edit]

Template:The Corsican Brothers Template:S. S. Vasan

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