Venkat Kumar Gangai Amaren (born 7 November 1975), better known (by his stage name Venkat Prabhu, is an Indian filmmaker, who has worked as an actor, director and playback singer in the Tamil film industry. After completing his education, he began pursuing an acting career, with his first three ventures featuring him in a starring role, failing to release, following which he began appearing in character roles. He entered the spotlight for the first time when he turned director with the summer hit Chennai 600028 (2007). He achieved further commercial successes with his subsequent directorials Saroja (2008), Goa (2010), Mankatha (2011), Biriyani (2013) and Masss (2015) . His father Gangai Amaren is a film director and music director.
7 November 1975
Chennai, Tamil Nadu, India
|Occupation||Actor, film director, film producer, playback singer, screenwriter, lyricist|
|Spouse(s)||Rajalakshmi (2000–present) Daughter= Shivani|
|Relatives||Premgi Amaren Ashley father (Brother)|
Gangai Amaren (Father)
Karthik Raja(First Cousin (male))
Yuvan Shankar Raja(First Cousin (male))
Bhavatharani(First Cousin (female))
Venkat Prabhu lived in the United Kingdom for seven years; during that time, he completed his high school and university studies, obtaining a degree in accounting. at Middlesex University. Following his return to India, Prabhu began singing for demos by his cousins, Yuvan Shankar Raja and Karthik Raja, and started his career as a playback singer in the film industry. In 1996, he, his brother Premgi Amaren and his childhood friend S. P. B. Charan set up a music band called Next Generation, which also featured Yugendran and Thaman as members, and did several stage performances. The following year, Prabhu played the lead role opposite Sangeetha in a film titled Poonjolai directed by his father Gangai Amaren, but the film was cancelled in mid-production and attempts to revive and release the film by the late-2000s were unsuccessful. Prabhu starred in two more ventures, alongside his friends S. P. B. Charan and Yugendran; Wanted, directed by Premgi Amaren, and Agathiyan's Kadhal Samrajyam, both failing to release as well. Venkat Prabhu was then approached to essay supporting roles, with April Maadhathil (2002) becoming his first release. He went on to play character roles in nearly ten films, the most notable ventures being N. Linguswamy's Ji, starring Ajith Kumar, and the Perarasu-directed Sivakasi, featuring Vijay in the lead role. In 2008, he worked in Seeman's Vaazhthugal alongside Madhavan in his last credited appearance to date. He also played lead roles in Samuthirakani's directorial debut Unnai Charanadaindhen and Gnabagam Varuthey (2007), both co-starring Charan.
Chennai 600028 and the futureEdit
In 2007, Venkat Prabhu ventured into film directing with the sports comedy film Chennai 600028, produced by S. P. B. Charan, that revolved around a street cricket team from a suburban area in Chennai, with its players being portrayed by 11 newcomers, including his brother Premgi. The film emerged as a sleeper hit, garnering high critical acclaim and becoming labelled a "cult classic" in the following years, which led to the lead cast growing in popularity. He next directed the comedy thriller film Saroja (2008), the title being derived from a hit number from Chennai 600028, which also featured an ensemble cast including Charan and Premgi. The film followed the journey of four young men who, by taking a diversion off the main road, land into the hands of a kidnapper gang; it received positive response from critics and at the box office as well. He followed it up with Goa (2010), a full-length comedy film, which received mixed response and did fairly well at the box office. In 2011, he directed his biggest project to date, the action thriller Mankatha, featuring Ajith Kumar in the lead role.
After Biriyani, Venkat Prabhu directed Masss, with Suriya in the lead role. The film was produced by K. E. Gnanavelraja's Studio Green and co-produced by S. R. Prakashbabu and S. R. Prabhu; it was released on 29 May 2015 to positive reviews.
Venkat Prabhu has often taken an unconventional approach to film-making and has brought a number of innovations to the industry through the characters and screenplays of his films. He directed Chennai 600028 II, the sequel of the 2007 blockbuster Chennai 600028, and it was released on 9 December 2016 to mixed reviews. His next directorial has been titled Party, which has Sathyaraj, Nassar, Ramya Krishnan, Regina doing lead roles, producer by T.Siva. This is the first time Venkat Prabhu does not collaborate with his cousin, Yuvan Shankar Raja to compose the soundtrack, instead replacing him with his brother, Premji Amaren.
Venkat Prabhu is the son of director-turned-music-director Gangai Amaran and elder brother to actor, singer and music director Premgi Amaran. His uncle is the music director Ilayaraaja and his cousins are the music composers Yuvan Shankar Raja, Karthik Raja and singer Bhavatharini. S. P. B. Charan, producer of Prabhu's first directorial venture Chennai 600028, is his very close friend and they both have worked together on several projects.
He did his schooling at St. Bede's school in Chennai. On 10 September 2001, Venkat Prabhu married Rajalakshmi, the daughter of dance teacher K. J. Sarasa, and now has a daughter named Shivani. Shivani has already sung a song for the album Thaaaii when she was 5 years old.
|2007||Chennai 600028||Vijay Award for Best Crew|
Vijay Award for Best Find of the Year
Tamil Nadu State Film Award for Best Family Film
Nominated—Vijay Award for Best Director
Nominated—Vijay Award for Best Story, Screenplay Writer
|2008||Saroja||Nominated—Vijay Award for Favourite Director|
|2010||Goa||Edison Award for Best Romantic Film|
|2011||Mankatha||Vijay Award for Favourite Director|
ITFA Best Director Award
Edison Awards – Best Director of the Year
|2015||Massu Engira Masilamani|
|2016||Chennai 600028 II: Second Innings|
|Sivakasi||Udayappa and Muthappa's brother-in-law|
|Naveena Saraswathi Sabatham||Himself||Special appearance|
|2014||Ninaithathu Yaaro||Himself||Special appearance|
|Nalanum Nandhiniyum||Himself||Special appearance|
|Kathai Thiraikathai Vasanam Iyakkam||Himself||Special appearance|
|Theriyama Unna Kadhalichitten||Himself||Special appearance|
|2018||Tamizh Padam 2||Himself||Special appearance|
|1||Anjali||"Something Something", "Iravu Nilavu", "Motta Maadi", "Vaanam Namakku", "Anjali Anjali"||Ilaiyaraaja|
|2||Kalyana Galatta||"Aadham Evaal"||Yuvan Shankar Raja|
|4||Thulluvadho Ilamai||"Neruppu Kootadikkuthu"||Yuvan Shankar Raja|
|5||Daas||"Ennoda Raasi"||Yuvan Shankar Raja|
|6||Veyilodu Vilayadu||"Kattukadanga"||Karthik Raja|
|7||Kadhal Samrajyam||"Mullai Poo"||Yuvan Shankar Raja|
|8||Enakku 20 Unakku 18||"Oru Nanban Irundhal"||A. R. Rahman|
|9||Chennai 600028||"Yaaro (Friendship)"||Premgi Amaren|
|10||Kunguma Poovum Konjum Puravum||"Muthathu Pakkathile"||Yuvan Shankar Raja|
|11||Siddu +2||"Naan Aalana Thamarai"||Dharan|
|12||Adhe Neram Adhe Idam||"Nammooru Chennaiyile"||Premgi Amaren|
|13||Goa||"Yezhezhu Thalaimuraikkum"||Yuvan Shankar Raja|
|14||Pugaippadam||"Oru Kudaiyil"||Gangai Amaran|
|15||Samba||"Nandamuri Chandamama"||Mani Sharma|
|16||Thozha||"Oru Nayagan"||Premji Amaren|
|17||Vanavarayan Vallavarayan||"Kongunattu thendralukkum"||Yuvan Shankar Raja|
|18||Chennai 600028 II: Second Innings||"Soppanasundari"||Yuvan Shankar Raja|
|1||Chennai 600028 II: Second Innings||Soppanasundari||Yuvan Shankar Raja|
|2016||Chennai 600028 II: Second Innings||Tamil|
- "'Tik Tik Tik': Venkat Prabhu all praise for the Jayam Ravi-starrer".
- Malini Mannath I was mixing money with friendship: Venkat Prabhu interview. chennaionline.com. 6 June 2007
- "Generation NEXT". The Hindu. Chennai, India. 22 October 2003.
- "Prabhu gets candid!". The Times of India. 1 September 2008.
- The amazing success story of Venkat!
- Raghavan, Nikhil (10 September 2009). "On a song". The Hindu. Chennai, India.
- "Fresh notes". The Hindu. Chennai, India. 26 June 2009.
- "A young Venkat Prabhu to storm theaters?". IndiaGlitz. Retrieved 19 December 2011.
- "Actor Sangeetha content with her success". Chennai, India: The Hindu. 3 August 2006. Retrieved 19 December 2011.
- "A-Z (V)". Indolink.com. Archived from the original on 24 April 2013. Retrieved 19 December 2011.
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- "Vasundhara's no glam doll". Rediff.com. 29 April 2002. Retrieved 19 December 2011.
- "Youthful line-up". Chennai, India: The Hindu. 5 July 2002. Retrieved 19 December 2011.
- "Tamil cinema in 2007 – half-year report". Cinesouth.com. Retrieved 19 December 2011.
- "CHENNAI 28 BOX OFFICE TOP 10 OF 2007". Behindwoods.com. Retrieved 19 December 2011.
- "Movies that beat the odds – Chennai 600028". Behindwoods.com. Retrieved 19 December 2011.
- "'Saroja is not Chennai 600028'". rediff.com. Retrieved 19 December 2011.
- "It's 'party' time for Venkat Prabhu!". www.deccanchronicle.com/. 25 June 2017. Retrieved 25 June 2017.
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- "Venkat Prabhu's big day". Retrieved 29 May 2012.
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