Friday, May 27th, 2016

The film industry is an alluring world, and various filmmakers have carved a niche for themselves. But the reality is that only men have been dominating the film industry. But this doesn’t mean that there were no women directors at all in Indian cinema. Now and then, we see various films made by women directors. These films raise the bars high since women have the flair to empathize with problems, and in the process emerge a winner. By winner, I mean that the filmmaking process itself is half bridge crossed. Well, there are certain films in Sandalwood that are made by women directors. Let’s enumerate the list of women directors of Kannada cinema. 

Prema Karanth

 The year 1983 was a memorable year for Sandalwood since a woman director entered the industry in the otherwise male-dominated field. Her movie Phaniyamma, which centers on the problems faced by a widow, was a stunner at the awards functions. Also, it was well received by the audience. 

Kavitha Lankesh

Kavitha Lankesh is a very prominent director of Kannada cinema. Her debut venture in Kannada, Deeveri (1999), was well received by both the audience and critics. It also fetched her several national and global awards. Bimba and Alemaari are few other films that showed that she can sustain the industry. Her last venture was Kariya Kan Bitta, which has a contemporary social theme. Pradyumma, a child star in the film, received the Best Child Artist Award for this film.

Vijayalakshmi Singh

Remaking already successful films in other languages is a safe bet and Vijayakshmi opted this path. She directed Ee Bhandana (Hindi film Baghban’s remake) and was lapped by the Kannada audience. She also produced films. Though she directed few more films later, they were not quite successful. However, it is heartening that another director was born in Sandalwood. Her last film was Sweety Nanna Jodi in 2013.

Suman Kittur

Aa Dinugalu is the first film that Suman worked (but as an assistant director), and it was a success at the box office. Slum Bala was her debut film as a director, and it was embraced by the audience. Her next endeavor Edegarike also struck gold at the box office. In fact, it went on to garner international recognition. The distinct feature of some of her films is that they depicted real life in a beautiful manner. 

Roopa Iyer

Perhaps social conscience is in the genes of most of the women directors. Roopa Iyer had boldly attempted on the subject of AIDS in her debut film Mukha Puta-the Cover Page itself. And she went on to gain recognition through this film. Her next venture Chandra was also a success for this talented director.

Priya Belliappa

Priya is the latest to join the list of Sandalwood’s women directors. She directed the recently released Ring Roadwhich had an all-women crew. The movie was a perfect launchpad for Priya as it was well received by the audience. 

Priya Hassan

Another Priya in the bandwagon of women directors who is an actress too. Her films Jambada Hudugi and Smuggler too triggered the interest of the audiences. 


J Chandrakala

Chandrakala has dared to be experimental in her first film Khatle. However, the film received a mixed response from critics. 


Pushpa had worked as an actress before wielding the megaphone. Navella Bharatheeyaru is her debut film as a director and it also has a socially relevant theme.