It could be a mere coincidence. But the death of Vishnuvardhan even as his 200th film Aptharakshaka was being completed has evoked memories of Apthamitra and the death of actress Soundarya. Apthamitra directed by P Vasu was released in 2004 and was one of the biggest hits of Dr Vishnuvardhan's career. It brought back Dwarkish as a producer and the 'Kalla-Kulla' combination clicked again. But it was the untimely death of actress Soundarya in a helicopter crash just before the film's release that made people take notice. The film had a paranormal theme and Soundarya played a character with split personality. Many people linked the film with her death.
Aptharakshaka is the sequel to Apthamitra and has a similar theme. Paranormal incidents have been reported during the shooting of Aptharakshaka as well. Actress Vimala Raman claimed that she saw 'things' in her hotel room during filming and was so spooked that she took a ten-day break from shooting. The actress had said that she saw shadows moving around in her room and also felt 'something' was sleeping next to her.
Vishnuvardhan himself suffered a fall from a horse during the shooting. He had said that he had a gut feeling that something would go wrong. However he mounted the horse and the fall almost hurt his spine. Early on Wednesday morning the SMS doing the rounds among film fraternity is, "Apthamitra took away Soundarya. Aptharakshaka has taken away Vishnuji."