Hunsur Krishnamurthy – biography, fact, career, awards, net worth and life story

IntroIndian film director, producer, actor, screenwriter and lyricist
Was Film producer 
From India 
Type Film, TV, Stage & Radio 
Birth 9 February 1914, Hunsur
Death 13 February 1989
(aged 75 years)

Hunsur Krishnamurthy (9 February 1914 – 13 February 1989) was an Indian playwright, film director, producer, actor, screenwriter and lyricist in Kannada cinema.

He worked with noted theatre personalities early in his career, Gubbi Veeranna, Mohammed Peer and B. R. Panthulu, before entering films. As a film director, he made films mostly in the mythological genre such as Satya Harishchandra (1965), Bhakta Kumbara (1974) and Babruvahana (1977), all of which stars Rajkumar in the lead roles. The films were major critical and commercial successes and are seen as milestones in Kannada cinema and in the career of Rajkumar.

Early life

Krishnamurthy was born on February 9, 1914, in Hunsur, in the erstwhile Kingdom of Mysore of British India, to M. Rajarao, who worked in the Public Works Department, and Padmavati. He attended school in Hunsur, and completed his high school education from Sharada Vilas High School and Basayya School, Mysore.



Prior to working in films, Krishnamurthy worked in theatre as a playwright, writing plays such as Swarga Samrajya. He then worked for the Bangalore-based Bharat Nataka Company as a playwright and a scenarist, following which, he had a stint at Bombay Talkies. He then worked as a part of Marathi stage actor, Bal Gandharva’s theatre troupe. During the time, he also worked with famed Kannada theatre personalities Gubbi Veeranna and Mohamed Peer. In 1936, during his work with the latter in his drama company Chandrakala Natak, he worked with B. R. Panthulu, another popular theatre personality at the time, in his play Samsara Nauke, as an assistant director.


Krishnamurthy entered the Kannada cinema primarily as a dialogue writer for films such as Hemareddy Mallamma (1945) and Krishnaleele (1947). He even wrote the screenplay for the films. Writing lyrics for the soundtracks of films such as Kanyadana, (1954), Devakannika (1954) and Sodari (1955), he made his debut as a director in the 1958 mythological film, Shree Krishna Gaarudi that features Rajkumar in the lead role, an actor who would go on to dominate Kannada cinema as an actor for over two decades. Krishnamurthy followed this up with other films such as Veera Sankalpa (1964) Satya Harishchandra (1965), Sri Kannika Parameshwari Kathe (1966), Bhakta Kumbara (1974), Babruvahana (1977), Bhakta Siriyala (1980), Bhakta Dnyanadeva (1982) and Shiva Kotta Sowbhagya (1985). Most of his films in the mythological genre had Rajkumar playing the lead role. Commercial successes during the time, they were instrumental in shaping Rajkumar’s career as an actor. His film Satya Harishchandra won the National Film Award for Best Feature Film in Kannada at the 13th National Film Awards, and is seen as a milestone in Kannada cinema. His 1977 film, Veera Sindhoora Lakshmana was based on the life of Lakshmana, a freedom fighter who fought the British during the Indian freedom struggle, was major commercial success.

Actors M. P. Shankar and Rajesh were introduced by him in his films; with Shankar in Rathnamanjari (1962) and Rajesh in Veera Sankalpa.


1945Hemareddy MallammaKannadaYes
1950Shiva ParvathiKannadaYes
1953Sowbhagya LakshmiKannadaYes
1954Madiddunno MaharayaKannadaYes
1956Muttaide BhagyaKannadaYesYesYes
1957Nala DamayantiKannadaYesYes
1958Shree Krishna GaarudiKannadaYesYes
1958Aasha SundariKannadaYesYesYes
1960Bhakta KanakadasaKannadaYesYes
1961Mera SuhaagHindiYes
1961Bhakta ChetaKannadaYes
1962Shri Dharmasthala MahatmeKannadaYesYes
1964Veera SankalpaKannadaYesYesYesYesYes
1965Satya HarishchandraKannadaYesYes Won, National Film Award for Best Feature Film in Kannada
1965Maduve Madi NoduKannadaYesYes
1966Sri Kanyaka Parameshwari KatheKannadaYesYesYesYes
1967Devara Gedda ManavaKannadaYesYes
1967Devuni Gelichina ManavuduTeluguYesYes
1968Adda DariKannadaYesYesYesYes
1972Jaga Mechida MagaKannadaYesYes
1972Bangaarada ManushyaKannadaYes
1974Bhakta KumbaraKannadaYesYesYes
1975Mantra ShakthiKannadaYes
1977Veera Sindhoora LakshmanaKannadaYesYesYes
1979Kurubara Lakkanu Elizabeth RaniauKannadaYes
1980Bhakta SiriyalaKannadaYesYesYes
1980Guru Sarvabhowma Sri Raghavendra KaruneKannadaYes
1981Edeyuru Siddalingeshwara MahatmeKannadaYes
1981Shiva MahimaMalayalamYes
1982Bhakta DnyanadevaKannadaYes
1984Shiva KanyeKannadaYesYesYes
1985Shiva Kotta SowbhagyaKannadaYesYesYes


National Film Awards

  • 1965 – Best Kannada Film – Sathya Harishchandra
  • 1965 – Third Best Kannada Film – Maduve Madi Nodu

Karnataka State Film Awards

  • 1973-74 – Best Dialogue Writer – Boothayyana Maga Ayyu
  • 1974-75 – Third Best Film – Bhaktha Kumbara
  • 1981-82 – Best Dialogue Writer – Edeyooru Siddalingeshwara
  • 1986-87 – Lt. Puttanna Kanagal Award