Veteran actor and producer B.M. Venkatesh passed away on Tuesday at his residence here after a brief illness. He was 77.
Venkatesh had served the Kannada film industry for nearly half a century and acted in professional theatre and films, besides producing good number of movies.
He shot to fame with his performance inVeera Sankalpa directed by Hunsur Krishnamurthy in 1962. He created a niche for himself with his performance inChakrateertha,Janganmohini,Post Master,Maduve Maduve,Mamateya Bandhana,Miss Bangalore,Mallige Sampige,Ganda,Mane Makkalu,Gandhada Gudi and many other films.
B.M. Venkatesh who struggled hard to become one of the major personalities in Kannada cinema and theatre, was a product of professional theatre. He joined the Gubbi Veeranna Company in 1957.
Under the banner of Maharaja Movies and Mamatha Movies, B.M. Venkatesh produced some significant films of the Kannada film industry includingNyayave Devaru,Ganesha Mahime,Thappida Thala, and others.
Though he acted in many films with Rajkumar, his role inMayuraandBhakta Kanakadasa is still remembered. He was the former president of the Kannada Film Producers' Association and the former president of the Karnataka Film Chamber of Commerce (KFCC).
KFCC president Basanth Kumar Patil has condoled the death of B.M. Venkatesh and said the Kannada film industry had lost a senior film personality and the industry was saddened by his passing away.