Sriram Raghavan

Sriram Raghavan (born 22 June 1963) is an Indian film director and screenwriter who works in Hindi cinema. He is primarily considered an auteur of neo-noir action thrillers.

Sriram Raghavan
Sriram Raghavan at News 18 Reel Movie Awards 2019.jpg
Raghavan in 2019
Born (1963-06-22) 22 June 1963 (age 59)
  • Film director
  • screenwriter
Years active1987-present

Raghavan made his directorial debut with Ek Hasina Thi (2004). He then went on to direct the critically acclaimed Johnny Gaddaar (2007), an adaptation of the 1963 French movie Symphonie Pour Un Massacre (The Corrupt) by Jacques Deray; followed by the action spy film Agent Vinod (2012) starring Saif Ali Khan; a critical and commercial failure. Raghavan's followup Badlapur (2015), a film based on Death's Dark Abyss by Massimo Carlotto met with positive reviews and was a moderate commercial success at the box office.

Raghavan's prominence increased with Andhadhun (2018) which tells the story of a blind piano player who unwittingly becomes embroiled in the murder of a retired actor. The film received critical acclaim and was commercially successful. He is the recipient of several accolades, including two National film Awards and two Filmfare Awards.

Early lifeEdit

Raghavan was born in Bombay (Mumbai), Maharashtra in a Tamil family to a botanist father and a movie-loving mother. He grew up in Pune, where he did his schooling at the St. Vincent's High School. He also studied economics at Fergusson College in Pune.

He is a graduate of Film and Television Institute of India (FTII), Pune.[1] Rajkumar Hirani, one of his batch-mates, edited his diploma film, The Eight Column Affair, which went on win the National Film Award in 1987.[2] He is the brother of Sridhar Raghavan, a writer known for the television series, C.I.D., and the 2019 action thriller, War.[3]


Raghavan started his career before joining the FTII for Stardust, but left since he wasn't interested in it. Post his FTII studies, he made a documentary Raman Raghav, with Raghuvir Yadav. Later he worked as a writer for television soaps, writing many episodes of CID and Aahat, and also directed one episode of the Star Bestsellers called 'First Kill' Later, he met Ram Gopal Varma, who liked his work in Raman Raghav, and signed him up for the film Ek Hasina Thi, a dark thriller starring Saif Ali Khan and Urmila Matondkar.[4]

Raghavan along with composers Shankar–Ehsaan–Loy and actor Dharmendra at the music launch of Johnny Gaddaar

Raghavan later went on to direct another thriller, Johnny Gaddaar, which marked the debut of Neil Nitin Mukesh. The film was positively received by critics, though it didn't fare well at the box office; it has since been considered a cult classic.[5] His third film was the spy thriller Agent Vinod which is not a remake of the 1977 action film of the same name[6] Starring Saif Ali Khan as the titular character alongside Kareena Kapoor, it received mixed reviews from critics and failed at the box office.[7]

Raghavan next directed and wrote the revenge thriller Badlapur starring Varun Dhawan, Nawazuddin Siddiqui, Huma Qureshi, Yami Gautam which was released on 20 February 2015. Based on the novel Death's Dark Abyss by Italian writer Massimo Carlotto, it received positive reviews from critics.[8][9] Sudhish Kamath from The Hindu wrote "Sriram Raghavan’s latest is a fantastic return to form and the kind of cinema he revels in making: character-driven narratives with funny, dark, explosive situations, a realistic exploration of filmy tropes."[10] The film won six Filmfare Awards including Best Film and Best Director. It was a moderate box office success, grossing over 81.3 crore (US$10 million) worldwide.[11][2]

Raghavan's next venture was the black comedy crime thriller Andhadhun, starring Ayushmann Khurana, Tabu, and Radhika Apte, which released on 5 October 2018 to critical acclaim.[12] Raghavan saw L'Accordeur (The Piano Tuner), a 2010 French short film about a blind pianist, in 2013 at the recommendation of his friend, filmmaker Hemanth M Rao and was inspired by it. [11][13][14] In a positive review of the film, Sushant Mehta of India Today wrote, "Raghavan's ability to shock an entire cinema hall including the most immovable, emotionless fan coupled with his ability to make the audience laugh during these moments where your heart is in your mouth defines his unique brand of cinema".[15] The film earned 4.56 billion (US$57 million) worldwide, a majority of which came from the Chinese box office, to become his highest-grossing release and one of Indian cinema's biggest grossers.[16][17]


Year Film Director Writer Notes
1987 The Eight Column Affair Yes Yes

FTII Diploma Film

2004 Ek Hasina Thi Yes Yes
2007 Johnny Gaddaar Yes Yes
2012 Agent Vinod Yes Yes
2015 Badlapur Yes Yes
2018 Andhadhun Yes Yes
2023 Merry Christmas Yes Yes
2024 Ikkis Yes Yes


Film Award Category Result Ref.
Johnny Gaddaar 53rd Filmfare Awards Best Screenplay Nominated [18]
Badlapur 61st Filmfare Awards Best Film Nominated [19]
Best Director Nominated
Andhadhun 66th National Film Awards Best Adapted Screenplay Won [20]
Best Feature Film in Hindi Won
64th Filmfare Awards Best Film Nominated [21]
Best Director Nominated
Critics Best Film Won
Best Screenplay Won
24th Star Screen Awards Best Director Won [23]
Best Screenplay Won
Zee Cine Awards Best Film Writing Won [25]
20th IIFA Awards Best Film Nominated [26]
Best Director Won
Best Story Won
Best Screenplay Won
2019 Bandung Film Festival Honorable Imported Films Won [29]
Asian Summer Film Festival (Festival Nits de cinema oriental de Vic) Best Movie Won [30]
Special Jury Prize Won
1st Diorama International Film Festival & Market Golden Sparrow for Best Indian Feature Film Won [31]


  1. ^ "Urmila is not emotionally disturbed". Rediff.
  2. ^ a b "Profile: Kiss Kiss, Bang Bang, But Slowly". Tehelka Magazine, Vol 5, Issue 22. 7 June 2008.
  3. ^ "BONUS: Q&A with Sriram and Sridhar Raghavan". 5 February 2019.
  4. ^ Anupama Chopra (2 February 2004). "Film review: 'Ek Hasina Thi' starring Urmila Matondkar, Saif Ali Khan". India Today. Retrieved 16 October 2019.
  5. ^ "Johnny Gaddaar - Movie - Box Office India". Retrieved 16 October 2019.
  6. ^ ""Agent Vinod is not a remake of Rajshri film" – Sriram Raghavan". Bollywood Hungama. IndiaFM News Bureau. 12 October 2007. Archived from the original on 21 May 2008. Retrieved 31 May 2010.
  7. ^ "Agent Vinod". Box Office India. Retrieved 30 November 2016.
  8. ^ IANS. "Varun Dhawan: Playing an old man will be my toughest role". NDTV. Retrieved 10 April 2014.
  9. ^ "Badlapur (2015)". Rotten Tomatoes. Retrieved 30 December 2017.
  10. ^ Kamath, Sudhish (20 February 2015). "Badlapur: Darkly ambitious, and very well made". The Hindu. Retrieved 12 March 2015.
  11. ^ a b "Top Worldwide Grossers 2015". Box Office India. 12 March 2015. Archived from the original on 14 March 2015.
  12. ^ "Andhadhun box office collection Day 1: Ayushmann Khurrana film riding on positive reviews". The Indian Express. 6 October 2018. Retrieved 6 October 2018.
  13. ^ Kumar, S. Shiva (22 August 2019). "'Andhadhun' inspired from French short film, reveals National Award-winning scriptwriter Hemanth Rao". The Hindu.
  14. ^ Kulkarni, Ronjita (1 November 2018). "Sriram Raghavan explains Andhadhun". Archived from the original on 7 November 2018. Retrieved 7 November 2018.
  15. ^ Mehta, Sushant (4 October 2018). "Andhadhun Review: Ayushmann Khurrana-Radhika Apte film is deliciously dark". India Today. Archived from the original on 6 October 2018. Retrieved 17 November 2018.
  16. ^ "Top All Time All Format Worldwide Grossers - Andhadhun 13th". Box Office India. 16 May 2019. Retrieved 16 May 2019.
  17. ^ Sen, Raja (20 February 2015). "Review: Badlapur is a dark, unflinching, fantastic film". Rediff. Retrieved 22 July 2018.
  18. ^ "Filmfare Awards Winners From 1953 to 2019". Retrieved 14 February 2020.
  19. ^ "Nominations for the 61st Britannia Filmfare Awards". 11 January 2016. Retrieved 22 April 2018.
  20. ^ "66th National Film Awards" (PDF) (Press release). Directorate of Film Festivals. Retrieved 11 August 2019.
  21. ^ "Nominations for the 64th Vimal Filmfare Awards 2019". 12 March 2019.
  22. ^ "Winners of the 64th Vimal Filmfare Awards 2019". Filmfare. 23 March 2019. Retrieved 23 March 2019.
  23. ^ "Star Screen Awards 2018 complete winners list". Hindustan Times. 17 December 2018.
  24. ^ "Winners of Star Screen Awards 2018". Bollywood Hungama. 16 December 2018.
  25. ^ "Zee Cinema To Air Zee Cine Awards 2019 In March". Zee Cine Awards. 13 March 2019. Retrieved 17 March 2019.
  26. ^ "IIFA Awards 2019: Book Your Tickets Now". IIFA. Wizcraft International Entertainment. Retrieved 16 September 2019.
  27. ^ "IIFA - International Indian Film Academy". Archived from the original on 20 August 2019.
  28. ^ "IIFA 2019 full winners list: Alia Bhatt's Raazi wins big".
  29. ^ "Ridwan Kamil Hopes Bandung Film Festival to Become a World Class Event". 23 November 2019.
  31. ^ "The Awards Of The 1st Diorama International Film Festival". Diorama. Retrieved 25 February 2019. {{cite web}}: Check |url= value (help)[dead link]

External linksEdit