Sivaji Ganesan Stamp
Sivaji Ganesan (1928-2001) is one among the most charismatic film actors of all time. Hailing from a middle class family of Villupuram in, Tamil Nadu, the young Ganesan was fiercely independent even as a child. He left home at the age of six to pursue a career in acting. Joining a theatre group, he went on to establish a good reputation as an actor. He was subsequently christened 'Sivaji' after his outstanding portrayal of the great Maratha warrior in the play Sivaji Kanda Hindu Rajyam. Sivaji Ganesan made his debut into the film industry with Parasakthi. which was a huge success at the box office. His histrionic skills -body language, dialogue delivery and facial expressions -were clearly a departure from the prevailling schools of film-acting marked by wooden performances. A remarkable feature of his illustrious career spanning 301 films was that he played the protagonist in most of them. The sheer range of roles he handled is breathtaking. Sivaji Ganesan was also a philanthropist who took up numerous worthy causes and worked wholeheartedly for them. A diehard nationalist, he would rush to entertain and liven up the morale of the country's armed forces wherever the need arose. Some of his foreign tours were memorable, when he charmed the people of countries like the USA and Mauritius as a cultural ambassador par excellence. He also served as a Member of Parliament (Rajya Sabha) from 1983 to 1986. Many awards and distinctions were conferred on this multifaceted personality, prominent among them being the Padma Bhushan (1984), Chevalier of Arts title of the French Goverment (1995) and the Dada Saheb Phalke Award (1996).