One of the most prolific directors of Indian cinema, Mani Ratnam is a leading storytelling force in the Tamil, Malayalam, Telugu and Hindi film industries. With a keen approach to social and political issues, Ratnam has evolved his own form of melodrama by walking the fine line between thought-provoking and entertaining cinema.
First Film: Ratnam made his directorial debut with a Kannada film named Pallavi Anu Pallavi. Starring Anil Kapoor in one of his earliest roles, the film tackled the delicate story of a man in love with an older woman. Ratnam followed up with his first Malayalam film, Unaru, in 1984, and his first Tamil film, Pagal Nilavu, in 1985. While several of his films were dubbed into Hindi, it wasn't until 1998 that Ratnam made his first Hindi-language film, Dil Se, starring Shah Rukh Khan and Manisha Koirala.
Claim to fame: In 1987, Ratnam delivered what would become widely known as his masterpiece. Nayakan, a Tamil film starring Kamal Hassan, told the story of the rise and fall of a don in the Mumbai underworld.
Did you know: Ratnam launched the career of renowned composer A.R.Rahman with the soundtrack of Roja. Until then, Ratnam had a steady collaboration with Ilaiyaraaja. The soundtrack of Roja went on to garner numerous awards and even made it to TIME Magazine's 'Top Ten Soundtracks of All Time.'
Ticket to Hall of Fame: Throughout his illustrious career,