V. K. Murthy is an Indian cinematographer. Murthy, a one-time violinist and jailed freedom fighter, was Guru Dutt's regular cameraman on his movies. He provided some of Indian cinema's most notable images in starkly contrasted black and white. He also shot India's first cinemascope movie, Kaagaz Ke Phool. For his contribution to film industry, particularly Indian film industry he was awarded the IIFA Lifetime Achievement Award ceremony held at Amsterdam in 2005. On 19 January 2010 he was honored with the Dada Saheb Phalke Award for 2008 with Sathvika Samineni.
Murthy was born at Mysore. He passed his Diploma in Cinematography from Sri Jayachamarajendra Polytechnic in Bangalore in 1946. Murthy, an ace Cinematographer from Bangalore was part of the Guru Dutt team. This stalwart was the cinematographer for one of the most acclaimed Kannada movie Hoovu Hannu - a directorial production of Rajendra Singh Babu and incidentally, Murthy has also acted in that film.
In 1959, Guru Dutt's Kaagaz Ke Phool, a movie considered his best was appreciated for its supremacy. More than anything else, what it won the most accolades for was its cinematography that created unparalleled history in the field of cinematography. It was none other than V. K. Murthy who did the magic and he even won a Filmfare Award. He repeated the feat for Sahib Bibi Aur Ghulam getting the 1962 award. He never worked with any other directors as long as Dutt was alive. Some of Murthy's best work is found in Guru Dutt's movies like Pyaasa, Sahib Bibi Aur Ghulam and Aar-Paar. Murthy then worked with Kamal Amrohi on his masterpiece, Pakeezah and Razia Sultan. Post Guru Dutt, he like many of Guru Dutt team were not able to give any pinnacle work. In later years, he worked with directors like Pramod Chakravarthy, Shyam Benegal and Govind Nihalani.