Friday, 16 August 2013

Star Portrait-Kamal Hasan

Kamal Hassan Profile:

A Versatile actor Kamal Hassan is known for his flexibility to percept into any kind of roles. He is one of the south film actors who have fans worldwide.  He is not only an actor, he is a script writer, and filmmaker, considered one of the leading method actors of Indian cinema. Haasan is known for winning several Indian film awards, including earning the most National Film Awards and Filmfare Awards, and also has the distinction of being the actor with the most number of films submitted by India in contest for the Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film. In addition to acting and directing, he is a screenwriter, lyricist, playback singer and choreographer. His film production company, Rajkamal International, has produced several of his films.

Personal Life:

Kamal Haasan was born November7th, 1954 in Paramakudi, Ramanathapuram district of Tamil Nadu, in a Bhrami Family to a criminal lawyer named D. Srinivasan and Rajalakshmi, who was housewife.  Kamal Haasan was the youngest of four children, the others being Charuhasan, Chandrahasan and Nalini Raghu. His father was a strict person, he wanted all his sons to study and do well. The two elder brothers followed their father’s example and studied law. Kamal spent his childhood learning everything except staying focused on his studies. His eldest brother Charuhasan, like Kamal Haasan, is a National Film Award-winning actor, who appeared in the Kannada film “Tabarana Kathe” among others. Charuhasan's daughter Suhasini is also a National Film Award winner and is married to director and fellow Award winner Mani Ratnam.  Chandrahasan has appeared as the producer for several of Kamal Haasan's films as well as being an executive of Kamal Haasan's home production company, Rajkamal International. His brother's daughter Anu Hasan has appeared in several films in supporting roles, most notably in Suhasini's “Indira”.His sister Nalini Raghu is a dance teacher. Kamal Haasan later named an auditorium after his sister as Nalini Mahal. Her son, Gautham, played Kamal Haasan's grandson in his directorial venture, Hey Ram.

Marital Relationship

Coming to his Martial relationships, Kamal Haasan married danseuse Vani Ganapathy in a low-key affair. Vani put on the mantle of costume designer for her husband's movies and was publicised for walking along with Hassan into the Filmfare Awards South ceremony of 1980 immediately after their wedding. However, the couple split after ten years together, after Kamal Haasan began dating fellow actress Sarika, confirming in a later interview that he and Vani have never been in touch since their divorce. Subsequently, Haasan and Sarika lived together from 1988, and got married after having their second child. Of the two children Shruti Haasan was born 1986 and Akshara Haasan was born 1991. Sarika took a break from acting soon after her marriage. However, she replaced his ex-wife, Vani Ganapathy, as Haasan's costume designer, with work in “Hey Ram”. The couple filed for divorce in 2002 with Sarika estranging herself from Kamal Haasan by the end of the procedure in 2004.  His intimate relationship with co-star Simran, who is twenty-two years younger, became the reason for the split. However, Haasan's relationship with Simran was short-lived as Simran went on to marry her childhood friend in late 2003. Haasan now lives with former actress Gouthami Tadimalla, who starred with him in several films in the late 80s and early 90s. He had helped her during her traumatic breast cancer experience and the pair has been in a domestic relationship since 2005. Along with Shruti and Akshara, Gouthami's daughter, Subbalakshmi, from an annulled marriage also lives with them.

Film Journey

Kamal Hassan debuted as a child artiste in the film "Kalathoor Kannamma" (1960), which was released in the year 1960. Since then, he has starred in nearly 200 films in the major Indian languages Telugu, Tamil, Kannada, Malayalam and Hindi. He has been a part of the film industry for 53 years. His journey in cinema has seen him don various roles from child artiste, to romantic lead to one of the most respected and revered heroes of the film industry today. He has famously said that he is a reluctant actor. He has an avid interest in every aspect of filmmaking and is known for his work as a choreographer, director, and writer, as well. He wrote his first script at age 18 for the film "Unarchigal" (1976), which was then followed by films that have gone on to become cult classics  Rajapaarvai (1981), Sathya (1988), Apoorva Sahotharargal (1989), Thevar Magan (1992), Mahanadi (1994), Kurudhippunal (1995), Avvai Shanmugi (1996), Hey Ram (2000), Pammal K Sambandam (2002), Panchathanthiram (2002), Anbe Sivam (2003), are a few of the films etched in popular memory for having set the bar for craftsmanship in the fields of screenplay, script, and dialogue. He is also a prolific writer of fiction and non-fiction in Tamil and his published work is testament to his constant exploration of structure and form. Kamal Haasan's strong convictions in his art have led to some of Indian cinema's most path-breaking films like “Pushpaka Vimaanam”.  Kamal Haasan also worked as a choreographer while transitioning as a well-known child artiste to the lead actor in a feature length film. Some of his best-known work as a dancer can be seen in “Saagara Sangamam”. Kamal Haasan is also a student of Carnatic music, studying under musical maestro Dr. Balamuralikrishna.  His career as a director began with the film “Chachi 420” the Hindi remake of “Avvai Shanmugi”. Since then he has called the shots for critically acclaimed films like "Hey Ram" and "Viswaroopam”.

Awards and Honours   

Kamal Haasan is one of the Padmashri awardees, and he is the most decorated actor in terms of awards in the history of Indian cinema. He holds the record for the most National Film Awards for an actor with four, three awards for Best Actor and one for Best Child Artiste. Moreover, Kamal holds a record nineteen Film fare Awards ranging across five languages and after his latest award in 2000, wrote to the organisation to exempt him from further awards. Sathyabama Deemed University awarded Kamal Haasan an honorary doctorate. He received the Chevalier Sivaji Ganesan Award for Excellence in Indian Cinema at the 2006 ceremony of the inaugural Vijay Awards. He received the Living Legend Award in 2007 from FICCI, which recognizes outstanding personalities from the entertainment arena and honours them with awards at their annual global convention, FRAMES. In 2010, the United Progressive Alliance government organised a retrospective of Kamal Haasan's films. During that event, Union Information and Broadcasting Minister Ambika Soni said the actor fell under a special category, as his cinema broke barriers of language and region. The same year, the Government of Kerala honoured him for completing 50 years in Indian cinema during the inauguration of state-wide Onam celebrations in Thiruvananthapuram. In 2009, Kamal Haasan was appointed as the chairman of FICCI Media and Entertainment Business Conclave, organised by the entertainment division of the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FICCI).He has recently been roped in to be part of academic advisory council for ISFM (International school of Film+Media). Kamal Hassan was also recently invited on board an American ship as a special friend of the US Government. In April 2013, Kamal Haasan received an award on behalf of the Indian cinema, presented by Chris Brown, Executive Vice President, Conventions & Business Operations for the National Association of Broadcasters, part of the New York Festivals International Film & TV awards.Coca-Cola India has recognized 20 luminaries of the film industry with the launch of the 24th Edition of the Limca Book of Records 2013 - ‘Cinema Special’ Edition, acknowledging the extraordinary achievements of 20 Indian Cinematic Icons as "People of the Year", including Kamal Haasan. Other recognitions include a string of Tamil Nadu State Film Awards, Nandi Awards, Screen Awards and Vijay Awards, including four separate awards for his performance in “Dasavathaaram”.

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