Chennai, June 15 (IANS) Popular Tamil actor, writer and director R. Manivannan died here Saturday following a cardiac arrest, said a family friend. He was 58.
Manivannan passed away at his residence in Nesapakkam, the friend told IANS. He is survived by his wife, son and a daughter.
"I can't believe he is no more. He was perfectly fine when I met him recently during the release of his 50th directorial film," the friend said.
Southern actor Siddharth took to Twitter to mourn the death of the multi-faceted talent.
"The great Manivannan Sir is no more. Many lives in cinema are what they are today because of him. Writer, director, actor? gone too soon. RIP," he posted.
Manivannan's 50th directorial outing was Tamil political-satire "Nagaraja Cholan MA, MLA", which recently released to a lukewarm response. It was the sequel to highly successful Tamil film "Amaidhi Padai".
Other noted films directed by Manivannan include "Pudhu Manithan", "Chinna Thambi Periya Thambi" and "Jalli Kattu".
It was as a character actor that Manivannan won the hearts of millions. Known for playing hero's uncle or father in most films, Manivannan will be remembered for his roles in Tamil films such as "Mudhalvan", "Sangamam" and "Ullathai Allitha". He worked in over 400 Tamil films.
He started his showbiz career as a writer. He penned dialogues for projects like "Tick Tick Tick" and "Kathal Ovium".