indian cinema heritage foundation

Tyagraj Pendharkar

  • Born: 11 February, 1926 (Kolhapur)
  • Died: 28 September, 2018 (Kolhapur)
  • Primary Cinema: Marathi
  • Parents: Baburao Pendharkar
  • Children: Mahesh, Tejaswini

Cinematographer Tyagraj Pendharkar, son of the legendary filmmaker Baburao Pendharkar, worked on several films in the course of his long career. Born 11 February, 1926, he was the nephew of film personalities Bhalji Pendharkar and Master Vinayak. Eschewing the opportunity to get into acting, he instead wanted to be an engineer. However, he went on to start working as a photographer. He chose to pursue his passion—cinematography. Moving to Bombay from Kolhapur, he started work with his maternal uncle V Shantaram at his famous studio, Rajkamal Studios. He worked in the cinematography department on landmark films directed by Shantaram, namely Jhanak Jhanak Payal Baaje (1955), and Do Ankhen Barah Haath (1957). He made an impression with his work as an assistant cameraman and subsequently as a chief cameraman. He also assisted G Balkrishna in the photographing of the Prabhat Kumar-directed Toofan Aur Deeya (1956), starring Satish Vyas, Nanda and Rajendra Kumar

Honing his craft, he went on to work as a cinematographer in Hindi, Marathi, and Gujarati language films such as Takkar (1993) directed by Chandrakant Joshi, Mahima Jyotibacha (1991), Aaghat (1990), Shapat Tula Balachi (1989), Jhanjhaar (1987), Purnasatya (1987), Bal Shivaji (1981), Mota Gharni Vahu (1978), Samaaj Ko Badal Dalo (1970), Paisa Ya Pyar (1969), Diwana (1967), Stree (1961), Navrang (1959), and Mousi (1958).  

Pendharkar worked on both black and white films as well as colour films, over the course of his six decade-long career. Choosing to keep a low profile, he also penned his autobiography, पडद्यामागचा माणूस  in Marathi, which translates to Man Behind the Scenes

Tyagraj Pendharkar passed away on 28 September, 2018 in his hometown Kolhapur at the age of 93.