The first name of our list, Dileep, born on 27 October 1968, shined at various roles in the film industry such as mimicry artist, playback singer, producer and well-known entrepreneur. He gained his popularity as a mimicry artist, and that made his imprint in the film industry. He learned the act of performing on stages from Cochin Kalabhavan, which is an institution that produced many of the current superstars in Mollywood. His performances in ‘Meesa Madhavan’ (2002), ‘C.I.D Moosa’ (2003), ‘
’ (2012), ‘My Boss’ (2012) and ‘
’ (2015) gave him the stardom in Malayalam film industry. He always delivers family entertainers and won Filmfare Award and Kerala state film Award for Best-Actor for ’Meesa Madhavan’ (2002) and ‘Vellaripravinte Changathi’ (2011) respectively. His career holds different critically acclaimed performances as in ‘Chanthpottu’ (2005), ‘
’ (2002), ‘
’ (2010), ‘
Jayaram, born on 10 December 1965, showed his talents both in Mollywood and Tollywood. He acted as the star, co-star, villain, and comedian in various films and starred in more than 250 films. His career started as a mimic artist and gradually moved to lead roles. He can mimic many of the Mollywood superstars of the twentieth century, and has done many stage performances. Those stage performances paved the way for him to enter the film industry in 1988 with the movie ‘Aparan’. His scintillating performances include ‘
’ (1999), Yaathrakarude Sradhakku (2002), ‘
’ (2003), Veruthe Oru Bhaarya (2008) and he had done some comic roles in Tamil film industry films like ‘Aegan’ (2008) and ‘Thuppaki’ (2012). Jayaram is also a famous ‘chenda’ percussionist and has played it on different occasions for ‘
’, a festival in Kerala. He had won the civilian award, Padma Shri (2011) for his contribution to film industry and Filmfare Award for Best-Actor for ‘Thoovalkottaram’ (1996), ‘Theerthadanam’ (2001) and ‘Manassinakkare’ (2003).
Kalabhavan Mani, born in 1st January 1971, made his mark in Mollywood, Tollywood and Telugu film industries. He started his career from Cochin Kalabhavan, acted in over 300 movies and has done different roles as a star, co-star, villain, comedian, playback singer, music director, and above all he is famous for Kerala folk song and his smile. His energizing voice made the Kerala folk song popular, and he had given immense support for all Kerala folk song artists. His famous performances include Ben Johnson,
’, ‘Lokanathan IAS’. The best performance of his career was a role in film ‘Vasathiyum Lakshmiyum Pinne Njaanum’ (1999) which had won Special Jury Award and Kerala state film award. He died on 6 March 2016, an unnatural death as per police investigation, caused due to excessive amount of alcohol in his body.
Aju Varghese, born 11 January 1985, came to the film industry as a comedian and he is going to be in the next generation of actors in Mollywood. He already have done side roles as a co-star in successful films like
Oru Vadakkan Selfie
, Ohm Shanthi Oshana, ‘
, and Two Countries. His career in film industry began with the film Malarvaadi Arts Club, directed by
, and that movie was produced by Dileep. He had won award for best comedian in the Malayalam movie Two Countries, in SIIMA Awards 2016. His film career shows us that how friendship can lead one person to the film industry. In the short time span, he has already acted in over 50 movies.
5. Kalabhavan Shajohn
Kalabhavan Shajohn is another veteran artist from Cochin Kalabhavan. Before establishing himself as a film actor, he was a full-time mimic artist. Starting his career in the film named ‘My Dear Karadi’ alongside Kalabhavan Mani, he had shown his potential of acting. Then after that films like C.I.D Moosa and Usthad Hotel gave him side roles. Most of the time in his career in film industry, he was a full-time comedian, until ‘
’. Kalabhavan Shajohn did a remarkable performance as a villain. His performance in ‘Drishyam’ brought him tons of opportunities from Mollywood and Tollywood. But those offers are mostly for negative characters, and he declined those offers saying that he likes to be a comedian in films rather than a villain. He has already acted in over 50 films, and won Special Jury Award of Kerala State Film Awards for the negative role in Drishyam and SIIMA Award for the same.
Sreenivasan, one of the most prolific scenarists of the industry, was born on 4 April 1956. This veteran actor has quite a notable place in the Malayalam film industry. He is an acclaimed screenwriter, actor, filmmaker, and producer in Malayalam cinema, known for his sarcastic comedies. Many of the characters done by him have the ability to raise a laugh, even after years after they have first appeared on the screen. He is a genius in breathing life into characters that are unglamorously real. Sreenivasan completed his studies from the Film Chamber Institute, where Superstar ‘
’ was his senior. Sreenivasan marked his entry in the film industry with the movie ‘Chuchumani’. His had marked his acting talent in Chinthavishtayaya Shyamala (1998), ‘Vadakkunokkiyanthram’ (1989), ‘
’ (1987), ‘Chithram’ (1988), Gandhinagar 2nd Street (1986), (2007), and ‘
’ (2011). The film Chinthavishtayaya Shyamala won the National Film Award in 2000. He has also won Special Jury Award of Kerala State for the film ‘Thakarachenda’ (2007).
The national award-winning film actor, Salim Kumar, has also started his career as a mimic artist at the Cochin Kalabhavan. He was a performer in a private channel comedy program titled ‘
’. Salim Kumar, born on 10 October 1969 at Ernakulam, already won three Kerala State film Awards for Best-Actor, Comedian and Second Best-Actor. He made his entry into the Film industry with ‘Ishtamaanu Nooruvatam’, a family drama. The actor, who is known for his rib-tickling comedies, has won several awards for the best comic role. He has won state award for the best comedian for his performance in
Ayalum Njanum Thammil
(2013). The veteran actor has played several unique characters in more than 250 films. Salim Kumar played the protagonist in
(2005) for which he had won the Kerala state award for the second Best-Actor. The lead role in the film Adaminde Makan Abu (2010) won him the national award and state award for Best-Actor, and changed his acting career. His is also famous for his acting in ‘Pathemari’ (2015), Annan Thambi (2008) and Makande Achan (2009).
Sreekumaran Achary, better known by his stage name Jagathy Sreekumar, was born on 5 January 1951. He is a Guinness World Record holder for acting in over a thousand movies. He had started to do theatrical plays right from his school and his career started as a comedian. His debut film was Chattambi Kalyani (1975). His role earned him recognition and later he joined the lead role artists. Jagathy Sreekumar won his first Kerala State award for the Second Best-Actor for his role in the movie ‘Kilukkam’ (1991). He has also won state Awards Apoorvam Chilar (1991), ‘Meesamadhavan’ (2002), ‘Raamanam’ (2009), ‘
’ (2007), ‘Veeraalipattu’ (2007), ‘Palungu’ (2007) and ’Classmates’ (2007). In March 2012, Jagathy met with an accident and was hospitalised for over a year. He returned to the film industry after recovering from the injuries with the movie ‘Mathruvandanam’ (2014).
The remarkably talented actor, producer Siddique, started his career as a mimicry artist. He was an electrical engineer in Dubai and quit his job and commenced his career as a junior artist. He made his debut lead role in the evergreen comedy movie ‘
In Harihar Nagar
’ in 1990, which became a great success. He acted in a variety of comic films like ‘Manthrikacheppu’ (1992), ‘Mookkillarajyathu’, ‘Kasargodekhadarbhai’ (1992), ‘KunukkittaKozhi’ (1992), ‘Mughamudra’ (1992), Mimics Parade, ‘Kavadiyattam’, Simhavalan Menon Mughachithram, ‘Kinnaripuzhayoram’ and Welcome To Ooty. Siddique appeared in different roles in films like ‘
’ (2002), ‘
, Nadiya Kollappetta Rathri, The Tiger, ‘
’ and ‘Alibhai’. In 2003, the Kerala State Film Award awarded him the second Best-Actor for his performance in Sasneham Sumitra. Siddique turned out to be a veteran in his performances as a villain and won Kerala state award for best villain 3 times for the films like ‘August 15’ (2012), ‘Prajapati’ (2007) and ‘
Suraj Venjaramoodu is a national award-winning actor and comedian who acted in over 100 films in the industry. Suraj, well known for his hilarious performances in Malayalam film industry, saw an entirely different performance in his national award-winning film ‘
’ in 2014, directed by Dr Biju. He is a three-time recipient of Kerala state Award as best comedy artist. Suraj was born on 30 June 1976 at Thiruvananthapuram. He evoked his career as a mimicry artist and made a breakthrough entry in a private channel comedy program titled ‘
’. Suraj won the best actor National Award for his performance in ‘Perariyathavar’. His acting skills in that film was great. It also created some controversies and the actor finally landed up as the best comedian. His latest film is the 2016 release box office hit ‘Puli Murugan’.