Rajiv Menon is one of the most acknowledged, talented cinematographer in India. He was born and brought up in Kerala, Kochi in a singing influential family as his mother
Kalyani Menon was a famous Tamil and Malayali playback singer. From cinematography to script writing to Ad films making, Menon has excellence in every pursuit, On 5th, may 2006 he launched a filmmaking institute in Chennai called “Mind Screen Film Institute,” where the first specialized course to be offered is ‘Learning Cinematography.'
Rajiv Menon joined the Film and Television Institute of Chennai in 1981, to study cinematography. In 1984, he went to America to train under cinematographer Garret Brown, best known for his invention of the Stead cam. He started off his career with Ad making and then he became friends with music maestro A.R Rehman and together this duo has given jingles for the brands like Airtel, Raymonds, Coca-cola, later in early 90’s he started his career as a full-fledged cinematographer.
His breakthrough was
Mani Ratnam’s great hit “BOMBAY” and after Bombay, Menon’s work just got appreciated, and accredited. He Joined with Mani Ratnam and worked as a cinematographer in Guru, and Kadal. He has also worked with critically acclaimed directors such as
Girish Karnad. The movie Minsara Kanavu (1997) was his both directorial and acting debut as he has done a cameo role in the film. This movie was not just critically acclaimed, but also was a great commercial hit. This movie also bagged him the National Award and after this in the year (2000) he made his second film Kandokundain Kandokundain, which was a multi starter project starring Mammootty, Aishwarya Rai, Tabu and for this film he won the Filmfare Award for best Tamil Director.
Rajiv Menon’s production house “Rajiv Menon Productions” ranked 3rd in the Economic Times Mumbai’s House Ranking, who has produced projects like Ussele Ussele (2001) Tamil pop album and Rajasthan. His most recent work includes movie Kochadaiyyan (2014), with none other than superstar Rajnikanth, where he again wowed us with his brilliant cinematography. In one of the interviews with The Hindu , reporter asked him that why does he likes to work with Mani Ratnam, he said that “I like to shoot feature films because it’s about capturing emotions…words like guilt, hurt, betrayal.” This shows his sincerity towards his work.