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Mammootty (Malayalam: മമ്മൂട്ടി)(born Muhammad Kutty on September 7, 1953
) is an award winning Indian actor who works mainly in Malayalam Cinema. During a career spanning more than quarter of a century, he has acted in more than 300 films as lead actor, and has been successful in both mainstream and parallel cinema. [[http://movies.deepthi.com/malayalam/actors/mammootty.html 'Mammootty Bio']]
Mammootty received many major awards for his performance. These include three National awards, four State awards and eight Filmfare Awards in the best actor category. In 1998, the Government of India honored him with Padma Shri for his outstanding contributions to Indian cinema.
Mammootty is also the Chairman of Malayalam Communications, which runs Malayalam TV channels like Kairali TV, People TV and WE TV. After a survey among its readers, Vanitha magazine selected Mammootty as the actor with the most sex appeal. Mammootty has promoted humanitarian causes throughout Kerala, and is the goodwill ambassador of the Akshaya project.
Family and early life
Mammootty was born in Chembu near Vaikom in the Kottayam district of former state Travancore-Cochin, India in a middle class Muslim family to Ismail, an agriculturist, and Fatima, a housewife on September 7, 1953. Along with his siblings, he grew up in Chempu, Vaikom. He did his high school(pre-degree) at Maharajas College, Kochi, and then studied law at Ernakulam Government Law College. He also practiced law for two years in Manjeri. He married Sulfath in 1980 and has a daughter, Surumi (b.1982) and a son, Dulquar Salman (b.1986).
Early career, 1971-1980
Mammootty's first screen appearance was in 1971 in ''Anubhavangal Paalichakal'', directed by K. S. Sethumadhavan. However his role was uncredited. He was a student at the Maharajas College then. In 1973, he got another role in ''Kalachakram'', a Prem Nazir movie directed by K. Narayanan.
His professional film career began in 1979, when he played his first lead role in ''Devalokam'', directed by veteran M. T. Vasudevan Nair. However, this film was never released.
''Vilkanundu Swapnangal'', written by M. T. Vasudevan Nair and directed by M. Azad was Mammootty's first notable film. His roles in ''Mela'', directed by K.G.George where he played a Circus artist, and ''Thrishna'' , directed by I.V. Sasi got him noticed as a hero.
In 1982, his role of a police officer in the investigative thriller ''Yavanika'' (1982) directed by K. G. George was the beginning of a trend whereby Mammootty would play the role of a tough cop in many action and investigative thrillers in the coming years.
In 1981, he got his first state award in the Best Supporting Actor category for his performance in ''Ahimsa''.
The period 1982-1984 saw Mammootty evolve into a commercially viable hero in mainstream Malayalam cinema. Padmarajan’s ''Koodevide'' and Joshy’s ''Aa Raathri'' were highly successful in the box office. His performances in films like ''Aalkootathil Thaniye'' and ''Adiyozhukkukal'', scripted by M.T.Vasudevan Nair established him as an actor of substance..
In a period of five years from 1982 to 1986 Mammootty acted in more than 150 films as a hero.
His role as ''Karunan'' in ''Adiyozhukkukal'' directed by I.V. Sasi, written by M. T. got him State Award and Filmfare Award in the Best Actor category. Mammootty won the State special jury award and best actor Filmfare award for ''Yathra'' directed by Balu Mahendra in which he played the role of a forest officer. His other notable movies of 80s were ''Nirakkoottu''(1985), New Delhi''(1987) and ''Thaniyavarthanam(1987).
''New Delhi'' was a very important movie of his career. The film was loosely based on the novel, "The Almighty" by Irving Wallace.
Late 1980s and 1990s
In 1988 Mammootty delivered one of the biggest hits in the history of Malayalam Cinema with his ''Oru CBI Diary Kurippu''. ''Oru CBI Diary Kurippu'' went on to create box-office history in Kerala as well as in Tamil Nadu. Following the success of the first CBI film ''Oru CBI Diary Kurippu'', three more murder mystery sequels were produced with the same cast of characters: ''Jagratha'' (1989), ''Sethurama Iyer CBI'' (2004) and ''Nerariyan C.B.I'' (2005), all directed by K Madhu, penned by S.N. Swamy with Mammootty as Sethurama Iyer, an intelligent but unassuming CBI officer. Two of M.T. Vasudevan Nair’s films with autobiographical elements were acted by Mammootty. One was ''Aksharangal'' directed by I.V. Sasi and the other was ''Sukrutham'' directed by Harikumar.
Mammootty touched the pinnacle of his career in ''Oru Vadakkan Veeragatha''; the film was directed by T.Hariharan and penned by M.T.Vasudevan Nair. His depiction of a Chekavar (mercenary warrior) of distinguished valor but vilified by circumstances won him the national award. Mammootty's performance in ''Mathilukal'' directed by Adoor Gopalakrishnan was also considered for the award. His role as a hunter Varunni in ''Mrugaya'', directed by I.V. Sasi, and another film ''Mahayanam'', were also considered for the state award. Mammootty won the filmfare award for his performance in ''Amaram'', directed by Bharathan.
Mammootty received his second national award for his performances in Adoor Gopalakrishnan's ''Vidheyan'' and TV Chandran's ''Ponthan Mada''. He also received state award for his roles in both films. His performance in ''Valtsalyam'' directed by Cochin Haneefa was also considered for the State award.
Current era, 2000-present
Mammootty won his third national award for ''Dr. Baba Saheb Ambedkar'', an English language movie about the life of Ambedkar, directed by Jabbar Patel The film was sponsored by National Film Development Corporation of India and the Ministry of Social Justice.
Jabbar Patel comments on ''Dr. Babasaheb Ambedkar'' and Mammootty:
Mammootty won the state award for his portrayal of ''Operator Madhavan'' in ''Kazhcha''. ''Rajamanikyam'' directed by debutant Anwar Rasheed, was touted as the biggest hit of all time in the Malayalam cinema.
In 2006, Mammootty filmed ''Thuruppugulan'' in which the character Gulan became a rage among the kids and a cartoon series on the character 'super gulan' was started by a kids comics.
Mammootty's action comedy ''Mayavi'' became the top grosser of 2007.
In 2008, Mammootty's ''Annan Thambi'' was released in 75 centres across the state and completed 50 days in nearly 61 centres. The film was touted as the biggest hit in malayalam surpassing the record of Rajamanikyam.
Films in other languages
Mammootty has acted in a few non Malayalam movies and these include some Tamil, Telugu, Hindi and English films. In 1989, he made his Tamil debut in ''Maunam Sammatham'', directed by K. Madhu . He has acted in Tamil films with front-line directors of the industry like K. Balachander(Azhagan) and Mani Ratnam(Thalapathy). His performance along with Tamil Superstar Rajinikanth in ''Thalapathi'' made him a favorite among the Tamil audience. Fazil directed ''Kilippechu Kekkavaa''(1993) had mammootty in his rarest avatar of a romantic hero. In 1995 Mammootty had a surprise blockbuster in the form of R.K.Selvamani directed ''Makkal Aatchi''. In Kandukondain Kandukondain, directed by Rajiv Menon, his performance as Captain Bala opposite Aishwarya Rai was considered the showstealer. ''Aanandam'' directed by N. Linguswamy had Mammootty in the role of a family man.
Mammootty has acted in a few forgettable films in Tamil . Puthayal(1996) (a film on treasure hunt), Junior-Senior(2002)(a love triangle), Viswatulasi (2004)(a mature love story) were all made with impressive starcast but were critical and commercial disasters.
He made his foray into Hindi films through ''Thriyathri'' in . However, his maiden Bollywood film as hero, ''Dhartiputra'' went unnoticed., nonetheless made his presence felt on the national level with the biographical film on ''Dr. Baba Saheb Ambedkar'' directed by Jabbar Patel. Mammootty's ''Sau Jhooth Ek Sach'' won critical acclaim but the film didn't do well at the box office. Mammootty's Telugu film Swathi Kiranam an offbeat venture was well received by the audience and critics.
Films shown at International film festivals
The movie ''Mathilukal'' ('The Walls') has been shown in almost 40 International Film festival beginning with Venice. Adoor Gopalakrishnan, the director of the movie said:
It was well received upon screening at the Venice International Film Festival, and won four awards in 1990.
''Vidheyan'', the cinematic adaptation of the novel "Bhaskara Pattelarum Ente Jeevithavum" by Malayalam writer Paul Zachariah explores the master-slave dialectic in a South Karnataka setting. The film won the Network for the Promotion of Asian Cinema (NETPAC) Award at the International Film Festival Rotterdam, along with the Interfilm Award - Honorable Mention at the Mannheim-Heidelberg International Film Festival.
Remarks during IIFA 2006
His remarks during the 2006 IIFA Awards ceremony held at Dubai had gained a lot of media and public attention.. He openly criticized the organizers of the IIFA Awards for completely ignoring South Indian films. Mammootty suggested that the Bollywood film industry stand up to competition from the South Indian film industry before calling itself International. He commented:
Mammootty in 2008
Mammootty is involved in more than half a dozen philanthropic projects aimed at helping the needy people.
Pain and Palliative Centre
Mammootty is the patron of the Pain and Palliative care Society, a charitable organization in Kerala formed with the aim of improving the quality of life among patients with advanced cancer. He has been the fuel and the engine of the pain and Palliative care centre, situated at Kozhikode, India. Thousands of people are getting the benefits which the institution is providing. Mammootty has now put forth a novel project to provide the pain and palliative care to those suffering from cancer, living all over Kerala.
Mammootty is the ambassador of Jeevan Jothi - a social work project aimed at providing aid to people who are seeking treatment for any Ophthalmic diseases, Heart (cardiac) orthopedic diseases, liver diseases, renal dysfunctions, Haemophilia diseases, ENT disorders.
Street India Movement
Mammootty is the goodwill ambassador of a charity project "Street India Movement", which is aimed at the eradication of child begging and Child labor. He has promoted the activities of the movement, which networks with orphanages and institutions looking after the children.
Kazhcha- free eye care and treatment
Kazhcha is a venture to extend free eye care and treatment to the neglected and downtrodden people of the society. This event is the first of its kind in India, organized in the name of an actors’ fans association. Kazhcha 06-07, is maintained by Mammootty Fans Welfare Association & Mammootty Times, in association with Little Flower Hospital & Research Centre and Eye Bank Association of Kerala. Under this project, around 10,000 people will be receiving free eye treatment and 1000 poor patients will have the opportunity to undergo cataract surgeries free of cost at Little Flower Hospital, Angamaly. The actual cost of each of these surgeries is around Rs.8000/-. In addition to this, all eligible patients, who are selected for surgery, will be given free accommodation, food, medicines and conveyance. This project also includes various programmes to prevent childhood blindness in society. One of the major activities related to this is distribution of free spectacles to the children from socially and economically backward families. The special fund received from the office of the President of India will be utilized for this purpose. Free eye camps will also be conducted at various places in connection to this project.
Donating foods and goods
During Onam 2007, Mammootty donated food items among thousand families in Parathodu near Kanjirappally in Kottayam district, a Kerala village which was hit by Chikungunya. The village which was worst hit by the disease claimed the most lives in the state. In a press conference Mammootty explained his motives for doing this:
Smart City: Discussions with Dubai Internet City
Mammootty and Dubai-based businessman M.A. Yusuf Ali met with the officials of the Dubai Internet City (DIC) to lobby for the proposed Smart City project at Kochi. Mammootty Explained in Indo-Asian News Service: .
Akshaya: Information Technology dissemination
Akshaya, the Information Technology dissemination project of the Government of Kerala, has Mammootty as its Goodwill Ambassador. He formally took over the role on February 26, 2006 at a video networked programme which was linked to all the district headquarters of the state. Mammootty will take up the responsibility of spearheading a campaign by appearing in print and visual media advertisements and other publicity materials that will send the message of Akshaya to the grassroots. He Explained:
Mammootty is now appearing in a new role on television. He was seen giving tips on ways to master the computer keyboard or browse the internet.
Akshaya, Kerala’s mass computer literacy campaign which has bagged several awards, has roped in the multilingual star to popularize the programme. Now launching e-lite-literacy programme in Kerala with Mircosoft.
Mammootty in December 2008
He is the current Chairman of Malayalam Communications,
[[http://kairalitv.in/tv/aboutus.htm Malayalam Communications Board of Directors]. “kairalitv.in''. November 1, 2004. Accessed October 30, 2007.] which runs some Malayalam TV channels such as Kairali TV, People TV and Channel We.
Mammootty formed a television production company, Megabytes, which has produced some television serials, the first being ''Jwalayay'' in the late 1990s, which was also his first project as a producer.. ''Jwalayay'' created history in Malayalam television. He had started a distribution company named Mammootty Technotainment. It has distributed his Tamil film ''Karmegham'' in Kerala. It gets the first share from the distribution rights.
Mammootty was appointed as the Global Brand ambassador of the Kerala-based South Indian Bank on October 16, 2006. The Bank chairman said this was taking into consideration the huge following Mammootty enjoys among the NRIs and his image as a clean, pan-Indian actor.
Mammootty has turned writer with his first book ''Kazhchapadu'' (roughly translated as (''Perspective'') a compilation of short essays he has written in various publications over the years.
Awards, honors and recognitions
National Film Awards
State Film Awards
Film Critics Awards
Other major honors and recognitions