Ennatha Kannaiya whose career as a supporting actor in Tamil Cinema spanned more than 55 years. He debuted in Ezhai Padum Paadu in 1950 in a small role went on to become a well known supporting cast. He uses the term “ennatha” before most of his dialogues in some of his movies at the early stages. This went on to become a roaring success due the modulation and timings. This gave him the prefix and then on he was called as “Ennatha” Kannaiya. It’s a rare feat to get recognised for a small performance in the presence of star performers such as Sivaji, MGR and so on. Although he got lesser chances in the later stages, he came back strong as a supporting cast to Vadivelu in the early 2000s. Just like how the early movie watchers know him for his “Ennatha” punch, the younger generations recognise him for his recent delivery of “Varum aana Varaathu“. It is indeed a rare feat to achieve for an actor to entertain two different generations.
In this post, I wish to talk about three great performances of Ennatha Kannaiya. First of the list is Naan, the movie starring Ravichandran, Jayalalitha, Muthuraman, RS Manohar along with Nagesh and Manorama. Three people claim themselves to be the true heir to a palace and the management is forced to accommodate and introspect all three of them to find the right one. Kannaiya’s role as a frustrated palace official definitely bursts you into laughter. This is the first role where he started using Ennatha before any dialogue he says. This became such a hit that he then on called as Ennatha Kannaiya. You can watch the movie below.
Once you are stereotyped it is a bit hard to breakthrough and the next film I am going to talk about is Nam Naadu. Nam Naadu, produced by B. Nagi Reddy and MG Chakrapani, directed by CP Jambulingam stars M.G. Ramachandran, Jayalalitha, SV Ranga Rao, S.V Ramadass, K.A Asokan and so on. This movie was a staggering success and was seen as a teaser for MGR’s political entry. He was seen as a common man turning politician to fight corruption and uplift of the downtrodden. He was stopped by three VIPs namely Dharmalingam (SV Ranga Rao), Aalavandar (SA Ashokan) and Punniyakodi( KV Thangavelu). Kannaiya acts as a sidekick to Dharmalingam. In this role, he uses the power of Dharmalingam to show some evilness towards others. His role as a physically disabled Kannaiya is one of the best performances ever. He clearly shows the evilness despite seen as a comedian before. You can watch Nam Naadu in the below link.
The third film I wish to talk is the role of Vadivelu’s father in the movie Middle Class Madhavan starring Prabhu and directed by T.P Gajendran. Although Vadivelu does all the performance in the scenes, it’s the reaction he gives that elevates the comedy. As a father who fears for his son’s rash behaviour when he’s drunk is a different level of performance. Supported ably by Shanmugasundari this scene remains a memorable one. Thanks to Vadivelu’s combination he indeed managed to tickle the funny bones of next generation with Middle Class Madhavan and as a car driver in Thottal Poo Malarum. You can watch the comedy scenes from the movie in the below link.
It was the movie “Naan” which gave him the famous Ennatha dialogue, On its wiki page, you can’t find his name in the cast.
Also in his wiki filmography, you can’t find Naan.