30 March 1967 |
|Alma mater||Georgia Institute of Technology
Warehouse Actors Theater
Nagesh Kukunoor (born Nagesh Kukunoor Naidu, 30 March 1967) is an Indian film director, producer, screenwriter and actor known for his works predominantly in Bollywood and Parallel cinema. He is known for films such as Hyderabad Blues (1998), Rockford (1999), Iqbal (2005), Aashayein (2010), Lakshmi (2014), and Dhanak (2015). He has received four International Awards and a National Film Award for his works.
In 2003, he directed 3 Deewarein which was show cased among the Indian panorama section, at the 2003 International Film Festival of India. The film was also premiered at the Kolkata Film Festival. After having been screened at the Indian Film Festival of Los Angeles, where it was well received, the film was screened at the Commonwealth Festival at Manchester, it was nominated as one of the top five films, at the gala presentation. Nagesh Kukunoor has also received the Filmfare Award for Best Story.
In 2006, He has garnered the National Film Award for Best Film on Other Social Issues, for directing Iqbal. In 2014, he received the Mercedes Benz Audience Award, for Best Narrative at the Palm Springs International Film Festival for Lakshmi. In 2015 he directed the Marathi film, Dhanak which won The Grand Prix, Generation Kplus International Jury for the best feature-length film and a Special Mention Award from the Jury.
Nagesh Kukunoor did his high school at Montfort School, Yercaud along with Kennedy John Victor aka Vikram and then attended Osmania University in Hyderabad, India from where he received his Bachelor's degree in Chemical Engineering. He moved to Atlanta, Georgia in the United States in 1988, and completed his Master's degree in Chemical Engineering at Georgia Institute of Technology. After graduating from Georgia Tech, he went to work as an Environmental Consultant at Trinity Consultants in Texas, then in Atlanta, during which he attended workshops in film. He studied Acting & direction at the Warehouse Actor's Theater in Atlanta.
He invested the money he made from his engineering career in USA in producing the movie Hyderabad Blues. It is based on a script that he wrote in Atlanta dealing with Indians returning home from the United States of America. He directed and acted in the movie. It was a budget of Rs. 1.7 million (roughly equivalent to US$40,000) and shot in 17 days. It was perceived by Sanjay Arora, an independent film maker, to be realistic and among one of the first movies to use Hyderabadi Urdu correctly. It became the most successful independent film in India. The film was featured at Peachtree International Film Festival in Atlanta and Rhode Island International Film Festival.
3 Deewarein (2003) was premiered at the Kolkata Film Festival. In contrast to his earlier work, it had a budget of 21 million (US$330,000) and featured established actors including Naseeruddin Shah, Juhi Chawla and Jackie Shroff.
In 2006, Nagesh KuKunoor wrote and directed Dor, a drama film featuring Ayesha Takia, Gul Panag and Shreyas Talpade as the lead actors. Nagesh also acted in the film, playing the role of businessman Chopra. The film is about two women who come from different backgrounds and how fate brings them together. Meera (Ayesha Takia), a young woman who becomes a widow shortly after marriage, is trapped by tradition. Zeenat (Gul Panag), on the other hand, faces the daunting task of saving the life of her husband, who is on trial for murder. A bahuroopiya (Shreyas Talpade) helps her reach Meera, who holds the "string" to Zeenat's hope. The companionship that develops between Meera and Zeenat results in redemption for both. The film, which is a remake of the Malayalam film, Perumazhakkalam (2004), was well received by both, the critics and film buffs.
It was however his film Iqbal, which was brilliantly written by Vipul K Rawal featuring Shreyas Talpade and Naseeruddin Shah which won him a lot of critical acclaim and recognition for the simple yet heart rendering script and the acting by all actors.
8x10 Tasveer (2009), features Akshay Kumar in the lead role and Ayesha Takia as the female lead it is a thriller with a touch of Hollywood style cinematography, but fared poorly at the box office. It is considered to be Nagesh's most self-reflective work to date. "I like to cast characters who are close to me. And this one gets as close to me as possible. I was once an environmental consultant. Akshay plays the part of an environment protection officer," Kukunoor said in an April 2009 interview.
In 2015, at the 65th Berlin International Film Festival, his feature Dhanak (Rainbow) won The Grand Prix of the Generation Kplus International Jury for the best feature-length film, plus it also a Special Mention by Children's Jury in Generation Kplus Section .
|2015||Dhanak||Yes||Yes||Yes||The Grand Prix, Generation Kplus International Jury for the best feature-length film, 65th Berlin International Film Festival|
|2014||Lakshmi||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Won Mercedes Benz Audience Award, for Best Narrative at the Palm Springs International Film Festival|
|2008||Bombay To Bangkok||Yes||Yes|
|2006||Dor||Yes||Yes||Indo-American Arts Council Film Festival 
Atlanta Indo-American Film Festival 
|2005||Iqbal||Yes||Won National Film Award for Best Film on Other Social Issues|
|2004||Hyderabad Blues 2||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Nagesh Kukunoor - Nominated for "Best Performance in an Indian English Film" at Screen Weekly Awards.|
|2003||3 Deewarein||Yes||Yes||Yes||Indian Film Festival of Los Angeles
International Film Festival of India
Kolkata Film Festival
Nominated at Commonwealth Film Festival of Manchester
Won Filmfare Award for Best Story
|2001||Bollywood Calling||Yes||Yes||Yes||Rome Film Festival|
|1998||Hyderabad Blues||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Debut Feature film
Won Audience Award for best film at the Peachtree Village International Film Festival in Atlanta
Won Audience Award for best film at the Rhode Island Film Festival.
|1995||One Culture At a Time||Yes||Yes||Yes||Debut Short Film|
- International Awards
- Audience Award for best film at the Peachtree International Film Festival in Atlanta, Georgia – Hyderabad Blues – 1999
- Audience Award for best film at the Rhode Island International Film Festival – Hyderabad Blues – 1999
- Best Film - Mercedes Benz Audience Award, for Best Narrative at the Palm Springs International Film Festival - Lakshmi - 2014
- The Grand Prix, Generation Kplus International Jury for the best feature-length film, 65th Berlin International Film Festival - Dhanak – 2015
- Other Awards
- Teacher's Achievement Award for Creative and Performing Arts – 2002
- Sircar, Subhra (14 November 2002). "Desi films draw bigger crowds than foreign films". The Times of India. Retrieved 22 September 2010.
- "Lakshmi wins Audience Award". India West. Retrieved 2014-01-13.
- "Small film, big win: Nagesh Kukunoor’s ‘Dhanak’ wins two awards at Berlinale". The Indian Express. 17 February 2015.
- Jaidev Hemmady (16 February 2015). "Nagesh Kukunoor's 'Dhanak' Bags Award At The Berlin Film Festival". movietalkies.
- "Nagesh Kukunoor – Biography". Retrieved 6 May 2011.
- "My Inspiration -Directors » Filmmakeronline.com – Sanjay Arora Independent Filmmaker". Retrieved 23 September 2009.
- "Hyderabad Blues 2 : Box Office India". Retrieved 23 September 2009.
- "Hyderabad Blues". Retrieved 6 May 2011.
- Varghese, Nina (10 August 2003). "The White formula for crossover success". The Hindu Business Line. Retrieved 22 September 2010.
- "English dreams, Hinglish films...". The Hindu. 28 July 2003. Retrieved 8 December 2011.
- "Hackneyed themes, new nuances". The Hindu (Chennai, India). 8 November 2009.
- "Akshay plays a character close to me: Nagesh Kukunoor - Sify.com". Retrieved 8 December 2011.
- "Awards and Juries in The Generation Section". Berlin International Film Festival. Retrieved February 17, 2014.
- "Nagesh Kukunoor’s ‘Dhanak’ bags honour at Berlin Film Fest". The Hindu. February 15, 2015. Retrieved 2015-02-17.
- "DOR to be screened at IAAC Film Festival". Glamsham.com. 6 October 2006. Retrieved 2 March 2008.
- "IAFF: Event and Screening Locations". Atlanta Indo-American Film Festival. Retrieved 2 March 2008.
- "Screen Weekly Awards (2005)". IMDB.com. Retrieved 30 Nov 2011.
- "Nagesh Kukunoor, From Chemical Engineering to Bollywood". Georgia Tech College of Engineering. Retrieved 8 December 2011.
- "Informals...". IITB. Retrieved 8 December 2011.