Ithayathai Thirudaathey (1989)

 ●  Tamil ● 2 hrs 29 mins

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Profound and poignant, this offbeat romantic tale delves into deeply insightful and hopeful concepts through the love story between two special people. A young man diagnosed with a terminal illness wishes to spend the few remaining days of his life in solitude away from his family. He comes to a hill station and there he comes across a girl, who seems to be his complete opposite and full of life. As they keep playing tricks on each other they get closer to each other. One such incident makes him aware of a shocking truth about her, which changes both their lives forever. With the lovers realise that there are no guarantees in life? Does anybody have any sureties of life beyond the present moment? How will the lovers react to their temporary existence?
See Storyline (May Contain Spoilers)

Cast: Girija Shettar, Nagarjuna Akkineni

Crew: Mani Ratnam (Director), PC Sreeram (Director of Photography), Ilaiyaraaja (Music Director)

Rating: U/A (India)

Genres: Drama

Release Dates: 19 May 1989 (India)

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Did you know? The film was shot in 60 days. Read More
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Special Appearance
Supporting Actress
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Supporting Actress
Supporting Actress
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Production Company




Screenplay Writer
Story Writer
Dialogue Writer

Camera and Electrical

Director of Photography


Music Director


Art Director



Stunt Director
Film Type:
Spoken Languages:
Colour Info:
Frame Rate:
24 fps
Aspect Ratio:
2.39:1 (Scope)
Movie Connection(s):
Dubbed from: Geethanjali (Telugu)
Filming Locations:
In the song Om Namaha, that was done in a single long shot (YouTube/online versions do not show this in a single shot as in the original release), you can see a fly in the latter part of the song (right shoulder of the hero).
This movie was also dubbed in Malayalam and unofficially remade in Hindi as 'Yaad Rakhegi Duniya'.

This movie has won several awards such as the National Film Award for Best Popular Film Providing Wholesome Entertainment, and seven Andhra Pradesh state Nandi Awards.

The song "Jallanta Kavvinta Kaavaalil" was shot with 40 children and 25 horses.

The climax of the film was made at the request of the president of Nagarjuna Akkineni's fan club that he was not happy with a tragic climax, stating "No one would be happy if their hero dies and the heroine also dies! At least, say something like they lived happily until they die..." Then upon request, the scene was changed in accordance.

The dance choreographer Sundaram did a cameo as the old man in the song "Jallanta Kavvinta Kaavaalil."

The song "Nandikonda Vaagulona" was shot in just seven days, on a 7-lakh cemetery set specially constructed for the song.

The song "Jagada Jagada Jagadam" was shot in Polvaram Race Course, by using a total of 40 cars in the shoot.

The song "Om Namaah Naarayana Shrutulaku" was completed in one take, using a trolley.

The song "O Paapaa Laali" was shot just in five days.

The song "O Priya" was shot in just one week in Jaisalmer, with the use of 100 camels for the shoot.

In 1989, an 11-year old Delhi girl named Geethanjali was suffering from terminal cancer and wrote her thoughts and emotions in a diary, which was published around that time. Mani Ratnam was moved when he read the diary, and named his film, and the title heroine, after the little girl.

As of 2008, this is the only Telugu film of Mani Ratnam's career.

London-born Girija Shettar was a guest at Mani Ratnam's marriage to Suhasini, and was selected for the title role. She took two months to prepare for the role under associate director 'Gadiraju Keshava Rao'.

Filming would start early in the dawn, around 5 AM, and wrap up by about 11 AM, in order to capture the scenes in a dreamy atmosphere. For which the cast and crew had to arrive on location one hour before filming.

The film was shot in 60 days.

An ice machine was brought from Madras to provide additional mist if the shot didn't look romantic enough.