In this , the name Sivakumar is a , not a , and the person should be referred to by the , Saravanan.
Saravanan Sivakumar, known by his Suriya, is an Indian , and , best known for his work in . After making his debut in (1997), Suriya landed his breakthrough role in (2001) and then had his first major commercial success with the thriller (2003). Following award-winning performances of a in (2003) and a in (2004), Suriya played a patient suffering from in the 2005 blockbuster . He rose to stardom with dual roles of a father and son in 's semi-autobiographical (2008). His status as an action star was established with roles of a in (2009), and an aggressive cop in the Singam trilogy (, and ). Suriya has also found success with science fiction films like (2011) and (2016). As of 2017, he has won three and four .
Suriya is the eldest son of Tamil film actor and his younger brother is also an actor. Suriya married co-star in 2006, after having been together for several years. In 2008, he began , which funds for various philanthropic activities. The year 2012 marked his debut as a television presenter with the game show , the Tamil version of . In 2013, Suriya founded the production house .
Early life and family
Suriya was born in 1975 to Tamil film actor and his wife Lakshmi as Saravanan. He attended School and in Chennai, and obtained his under graduate degree from . Suriya has two younger siblings, a brother and a sister Brindha.
Suriya is married to , with whom he worked in as many as seven films. The couple, after being together for several years, got married on 11 September 2006. They have two children, a daughter Diya (born 10 August 2007) and a son Dev (born 7 June 2010).
1997–2002: Early career
Before his career in films, Surya worked at a garment exports factory for eight months. To avoid , he did not reveal himself to his boss as Sivakumar's son, but his boss ultimately learnt the truth himself. He was initially offered the lead role by in his film (1995), but he rejected the offer citing a lack of interest in an acting career. He later debuted in Vasanth's own 1997 film , produced by when he was 22 years of age. The Suriya was bestowed to him by Ratnam to avoid a clash of names with established actor . The name Suriya was frequently used for characters in Ratnam's films., who would also go on to become a leading contemporary actor in Kollywood, co-starred with him in the film. This was followed by a series of roles in commercially unsuccessful films in the late 1990s. In 2001, he starred in 's comedy film , also co-starring Vijay.
Suriya confessed that he struggled due to lack of confidence, memory power, fighting or dancing skills in his early career, but it was actor , one of his mentors, who advised him to create his own identity, rather than stay under his father's shadow.
His major break in acting came in the form of , which was directed by . Playing the role of an who is very attached to his mother, he received a . His next venture was 's followed by directed by
In 2003, he starred in 's , a film about the life of a police officer. The film opened to positive reviews with a critic from claiming that "Surya as Anbu Selvan fits the role and this film is certainly a career high for him". The film became a Blockbuster at the box office. His portrayal of a happy-go-lucky village crook with a comic touch in 's , along with , won him and the film did well commercially. In 2004, he played dual roles in , as an aggressive boxer and a handicapped phone booth keeper. Suriya's performance won positive reviews from critics with a reviewer describing it as "Surya deserves appreciation for his astounding performance. He is at his best be it humor or action. The actor has scored a hat trick". The film became a successful venture at the box office and Suriya won his first . The same year, he portrayed the role of a student leader in 's political drama along with and which received highly critical acclaim.
Suriya signed on to feature in the psychological thriller, directed by in November 2004; he played the role of a patient suffering from short-term memory loss. Ghajini released in late 2005 and became a Blockbuster and was the third highest-grossing film of that year in Tamil. Suriya's role was unanimously praised, with a reviewer from citing that "the film is driven by Suriya's riveting performance". Later he worked in 's action film and the film received a moderate response at the box office. His performance fetched positive reviews with a reviewer citing that "Surya keeps you riveted to the seats with another wholesome effort".
In 2006, he starred with and in 's film . The film took a strong opening, average reception But his performance was praised, with a reviewer from citing that "Surya pitches in with yet another fantastic performance, be it the responsible husband and father, or the cool dude at college". In 2007, his only release was director 's , where he was paired with for the second time after Ghajini. The film, which featured him in dual roles, was commercially successful.
His next release was a collaboration with , after the success of Kaakha Kaakha, Suriya began work on Menon's biopic in November 2008. Playing dual roles for the third time in his career, Suriya appeared as father and son, with both characters also demanding scenes shot throughout their lives ranging from scenes as a 16-year-old to scenes as a 65-year-old. During the production of the film, Suriya described the project as "unique" and "straight from the heart", describing the physical hardships he endured during the making. He lost weight and prepared a for the film through an eight-month fitness regime without steroids, with the movie being a trend-setter for other leading actors from South India. The film, which also featured , and in prominent roles, became commercially successful at the box office upon release as well as receiving positive reviews from film critics, with Suriya's performance being lauded. A critic from labelled the film as his "magnum opus", citing that he is "perfect" and that the film for him is a "justified triumph". Similarly, critics cited Suriya's performance as "outstanding" and claimed that the film "works because of his performance", whilst other reviewers claimed the film was an "out and out Suriya show". His portrayals also fetched him several notable awards, including the , a by the jury and also the for 2008. The film also went on to receive a for 2008.
In 2009, Suriya's first release was 's action-thriller , which went on to become the highest grossing Tamil film of the year. With Suriya portraying the role of a smuggler, the film also featured as his guardian and as the lead actress. The film was shot extensively across , , and and featured acrobatic stunts by Suriya, without the use of a stunt double. Upon release, the film won positive reviews citing that the film was a "must watch" and Suriya's performance was yet again acclaimed and he found himself nominated for leading awards and won the . The film's success saw Suriya emerge as the most profitable leading actor in Tamil films, following a hat trick of large commercial hits, with film journals suggesting that his success was due to "experiments within the commercial format" and he was successful in "avoiding being typecast".
His next film, 's action entertainer also achieved commercial success, while Suriya's depiction of a hitman was praised. A critic from Sify.com labelled it as an "out and out Suriya show", stating that "the film rides on the magic of the actor, and his zany shenanigans alone makes it worth a watch" and Rediff.com cited that "he sings, dances, and fights with absolute sincerity, but when he looks at you with tears in his eyes in an emotional scene tailor-made for him, the applause hits the roof", concluding that it is "completely his film". In 2010, he had his 25th release with directed by , in which he played the role of a police officer from a small village going to work in the city. The film received to positive reviews with noting that "Suriya shows that be it a performance-oriented role or a formulaic concoction he can deliver", while Sify.com stated "Ultimately it is Suriya who carries the film to the winning post. His passion and the way he brings an ordinary regular larger-than-life hero character alive on screen is lesson for other commercial heroes." The film won Suriya the Vijay Award for Best Entertainer again and saw him nominated for the again, and subsequently went on to become the second highest-grossing film of the year. He made his debut in 's two-part political drama in 2010 which was released to highly critical acclaim and became a commercial success. Rakta Charitra is also considered as the Most Violent Film in Indian Film industry. Suriya subsequently went on to appear as himself in three consecutive guest appearances, appearing alongside and in a song in (2010), before also starring in 's and 's (2011).
His only release in 2011 that featured him in a starring role was 's science fiction thriller . Suriya played dual roles with in the film, as a circus artist and as the Buddhist monk named , who lived in the 6th century. The film met with mixed reception, but was a commercial success. His 2012 release was the directed in which he played the role of , Vimalan and Akhilan. The film received mixed reviews and the film ended up being an average grosser while Suriya's performance is praised along with technical aspects and VFX.
In January 2012, Suriya was named as the official host of the new game show to be presented on , , the Tamil version of , which began airing on 27 February 2012 and ended on 12 July. His next film was , a sequel to his 2010 film , that released on 5 July 2013 to mixed responses from critics. However, the film received a huge opening and emerged one of the . Suriya was once again acclaimed for his portrayal of Durai Singam and his performance was hailed as "the film's backbone". He had signed on to feature in 's film Dhruva Natchathiram and reportedly waited for six months to start filming. However, in October 2013, he backed out due to lagging of the project and differences with the director. His next film directed by was released on 15 August 2014 to mixed reviews. His next release was 's film which released to mixed reviews but critics were all in praise for Suriya's performance.
His next release was directed by which was released on 6 May 2016. The film is based on the concept of , the film stars actor Suriya in triple roles, with actresses and in leading roles. The film received mixed reviews., critic called 24 an "intelligent, joyous mix of sci-fi and masala-myth." Sreedhar Pillai in his review for mentioned, 24 is a classy commercial entertainer, which has its moments. Malini Mannath of wrote, "Attractively packaged, 24 is refreshing, novel and worth a watch. M. Suganth of , assigned 4 out of 5 stars, stating: "It is not often that we see a big star choosing to take a risk with a script that is not simplistic or formulaic, especially when his last few films have underperformed at the box office, but here Suriya pulls it off admirably. IndiaGlitz.com rated the film 3.3 out of 5 and called it as "A beautiful and brilliant show of Time".
Also, the movie collected est.₹100 crore (US million) in 18 days. And the director of the movie has confirmed that there will be a Sequel, planned as 24 Decoded.
His next film was released on 9 February 2017. His latest release was directed by and produced by and music done by with in female lead. Currently, the actor is shooting his next movie with .
In 2004, Suriya along with was 's brand ambassador in . He was chosen to represent , and in 2006, the latter which he endorses to this date. He has endorsed , Bharathi Cements and products since 2010. In 2011, he had signed a new deal with , and with Zandu Balm brand as of May 2011, for which he appeared with actress . In 2012, Suriya was drafted in by Malabar Gold, a leading jewellery group. The commercials for Aircel and Nescafe featured Suriya and his wife together. In 2013, he was honored at the as the Best Male Endorser in South India. In 2014, he had one major contract with energy drinks. In 2015, Suriya was named as the brand ambassador for and . He was listed #33 in 's Celebrity 100 List for the year 2013,with earnings of ₹48.5 crore (US.1 million), and #25 in the list for 2017, with earnings of ₹34 crore (US.9 million).
In 2007, Suriya was the brand ambassador of Tanker Foundation and acted in a short film on . In 2008, Suriya began the , working to help children who drop out of school early in . Suriya revealed that he was inspired to begin the movement as a result of his father's own organisation, Educational Trust, which had been operating similar benefits on a smaller scale since the 1980s. With the Ministry of Education in Tamil Nadu, he created a short commercial video outlining child poverty, labour and lack of education, titled . The film was written and produced by Sivakumar and also starred , and . Agaram sponsored 159 underprevileged students in 2010 for their higher education in various disciplines, and has continued to provide free seats and accommodation for pupils. With the firm belief that the educated mind can not only eliminate social evils but also aid in the socio-economic upbringing of society, Agaram Foundation works towards providing appropriate learning opportunities to the rural populace who do not otherwise have access to quality education. Through the foundation, he has also set up a platform for students to participate in workshops and improve communication skills, teamwork, goal setting and leadership.
Suriya and his family has also extended help towards the education of children on behalf of the Sivakumar Charitable Trust. He is also an active participant in other humanitarian works such as "Save The Tigers" campaign, which aids in the protection and preservation of Tigers in India, and "REACH", a non-profit that cures patients for free using supervised medication programs. The actor celebrates every birthday by doing charity work across Tamil Nadu.
In an interview with the , 's head of business in South India, credited Suriya as the "biggest star" in contemporary Tamil film and claimed it was mainly because of his popularity among Telugu and Malayalam speaking audience.
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