Ganesh in 2015
1980/1981 (age 36–37)
Adakamaranahalli, Bangalore, Karnataka, India.
|Residence||Bangalore, Karnataka, India.|
|Spouse(s)||Shilpa (m. 2008)|
Ganesh Bal (born 2 July 1980), known monomymously as Ganesh, is an Indian actor, film director and television presenter known for his work in Kannada cinema. Through his career in films and television shows, he has become one of the most popular celebrities and highest-paid actors in Kannada cinema. He is the recipient of several awards, including two Filmfare Awards.
Ganesh began his career as an actor in several television series and a tele-film which remains unreleased till date. He, then landed up as show host for a comedy talk-show named Comedy Time aired in Udaya TV. His popularity in the show was noted by director B. Suresha who cast him for the film Tapori (2002) for a villain role. His stint as a supporting actor continued until he was cast in the lead role in the film Chellata (2006). He shot to fame with the all-time blockbuster film Mungaru Male (2006) which found a screening of 865 days, creating a record in Kannada cinema.
The film Mungaru Male in theatres, having collected over ₹75 crore in end of its lifetime theatrical run of 865 days, it had not only broke all the previous records and it was the milestone in history of Kannada cinema, which was first in India for any language to be screened continuously for one year in a multiplex and went on to become National Record in Indian cinema, and which became all time Blockbuster hit in history of Kannada cinema. The Mungaru Male massive success brought Ganesh in to 'stardome' and turned out to be a "Golden Star" of Karnataka.
Ganesh won two consecutive Best Actor awards at Filmfare for portraying a sincere lover in the comedy-drama Gaalipata (2008) and in the romantic drama Maleyali Jotheyali (2012). He is popularly known as "Golden Star" among the film circles and his fans which was coined by director S. Narayan following the success of his directorial Cheluvina Chittara (2007).
He has acted in mega blockbuster films are Mungaru Male (2006), Cheluvina Chithara (2007), Krishna (2007), Gaalipata (2008), MaLeyali Jotheyali (2009), Shravani Subramanya (2013) and Mungaru Male 2 (2016). Alongside he has received critical praise by the both an audience and the critics for his performance.
Early years and personal life
Ganesh was born on 2 July 1980 in Adakamaranahalli, Nelamangala, Bangalore. He belongs to Gorkha clan from his father, Kishen Bal, who has Nepalese descent. His mother, Sulochana, belong to the Vokkaliga family from Bellary, Karnataka. He however, prefers to be known as a Kannada person since he was born and brought up in Bangalore. He has two younger brothers, Mahesh and Umesh, of which Mahesh debuted as an actor in Kannada cinema with the film Namak Haraam (2016).
He did his primary schooling in Basaveshwara English School in Nelamangala and thereafter his high school in Standard School in Peenya Dasarahalli, Bangalore. According to Ganesh, he was a "mischievous and was always made to kneel down outside the classroom, but was also the darling of the teachers due to the active participation in cultural activities". He used to enact in the inter-collegiate drama skits in his college.
After completing his diploma degree in Electronics, he became more inclined towards acting and approached some Kannada theatre troupes like "Ranga Sampada" and "Ranga Shikshana Kendra" where he acted in plays like Sadarame and Kadadida Neeru. He moved to Bangalore in 2002 and joined a diploma course in acting amidst appearing for several screen tests for acting assignments.
Guttu was Ganesh's first ever on-camera project. Though it was made as a telefilm in Karnataka, it ran into difficulties getting a timeslot to air, and the frustrated producers played it as a feature in festivals and select theatres in the USA, Ganesh played the hero, Deepak, a helpless software systems analyst, who gets caught up in the ambitious adventure of an NRI woman (played by Chaya Singh) who visits India to try and re-trace her family tree. His flair for comedy and knack for timing showed through in this first role.
As a TV artist he popularized the television program Comedy Time. The program was telecast on Udaya TV from Monday to Friday at 5:00–5:30pm in the beginning and later at 5:30–6:00pm. The program concept was unique: Viewers would write a letter to the anchor describing their family and mentioning their telephone number. Then the anchor would call their number, disguising himself as someone else and fool them. After reading each letter a comedy scene from a chosen Kannada film was telecast in the interim. His unique style of greeting the viewers at the start and end of the program was popular, especially with children.
Initial struggle (2002-05)
His first film was Guttu, a telefilm directed by India's youngest female film director, Priyabharati Joshi, an NRI who came to India with the intention of entering the Indian film industry. Priyabharati offered Ganesh Guttu just as he was about to graduate from Adarsh Film Institute, against the advice of industry insiders who criticised her choice of a newcomer. Guttu was Ganesh's first time facing the camera, before moving on to his TV career and later, feature films. He made his beginnings as a background actor, particularly playing the role of the lead character's friend in a few films.
His first feature film role was of a villain character in the film Tapori (2002) which was directed by B. M. Suresha. Portraying the character was a "gory" experience for Ganesh, since "the hero was supposed to hit on face and hit so hard that (his) nose started bleeding". Following this, in 2003, he played side-kick roles in three films out of which M. D. Sridhar's Game For Love was noteworthy while the other two under-performed at the box-office. He continued such roles in the years 2004 and 2005 starring in films such as Dayal Padmanabhan's Baa Baaro Rasika (2004) playing Sunil Raoh's friend, V. Ravichandran's Aham Premasmi (2005) and Nagathihalli Chandrashekar's Amrithadhare (2005) co-starring Dhyan, Ramya which also had a guest role played by Amitabh Bachchan.
Mungaru Male and Stardom (2006-08)
Ganesh's first feature wide-release film, Chellata, was a moderate success and ran up to 125 days in some theatres. Rekha Vedavyas, who had already acted in quite a few films, acted opposite Ganesh in this film.
Then came the 2006 film Mungaru Male, which was a roaring success. The film was directed by Yogaraj Bhat. Yogaraj had narrated the script to Puneeth Rajkumar, who rejected it. Ganesh had been involved in the script development process and was curious to act in the movie. He got director Bhat to meet E. Krishnappa. Since Krishnappa knew Ganesh (both hails from Adakamaranahalli, Nelamangala), he agreed to finance the film. Since Yogaraj Bhat could not get dates from any Kannada actress, he signed a relatively unknown actress, Pooja Gandhi. The film's lyrics were penned by Jayant Kaikini and music was composed by part-time music director Mano Murthy. Jayant Kaikini, son of renowned writer late Gourish Kaikini, was a well-known columnist and writer. The film was mainly shot during the rainy season in places like Madikeri, Sakaleshpura, Jog Falls and Gadag.
On 2007, starred in Krishna film opposite Mungaru Male fame Pooja Gandhi, which became sensational hit at the box office, completing 100-days in main centres of Karnataka, and touted as it was the second 'superhit' film of both Pooja Gandhi and Ganesh after mega blockbuster Mungaru Male.
His third film as hero, Hudugaata, was released on 8 June 2007. His subsequent films have included Cheluvina Chithara (2007), Gaalipata (2008), Krishna (2007), Aramane (2008), Bombaat (2008), Sangama (2008), Circus (2009), Ullasa Utsaha, and MaLeyali Jotheyali (2009), Eno Onthara (2010), Kool (2011), Maduve Mane (2011), Shyloo (2011), Munjane, Romeo (2012), Shravani Subramanya (2013) and Mungaru Male 2 (2016).
Ganesh married in 2008 and has a daughter and a son.
Actor in lead roles
|Denotes films that have not yet been released|
|1||2006||Chellata||Ganesh||Debut as a Hero|
|4||2007||Cheluvina Chittara||Maadesha||Udaya Film Award for Best Male Actor|
|6||2008||Gaalipata||Ganesh||Filmfare Award for Best Actor – Kannada|
|12||2009||Maleyali Jotheyali||Preetham||Filmfare Award for Best Actor – Kannada|
|14||2010||Kool...Sakkath Hot Maga||Rahul|
|22||2013||Shravani Subramanya||Subramanya||Nominated—Filmfare Award for Best Actor|
|28||2016||Mungaru Male 2||Preetham|
Actor in Supporting roles
|2002||Tapori||B. M. Suresh||Villain role|
|2003||Game for Love||M. D. Sridhar|
|2004||Abbabba Entha Huduga||Hemanth Hegde|
|2004||Baa Baaro Rasika||Vishwa's friend||Dayal Padmanabhan|
|2005||Aham Premasmi||V. Ravichandran|
|2005||Majic Ajji||Dinesh Babu|
|2005||Thunta||Comedy Time||Om Prakash Rao|
|1||2006||Comedy Time||Udaya TV||Block buster Television show|
|2||2010||Maleyali Jotheyali Special Comedy Time||Udaya TV||Special show|
|3||2014||Super Minute||ETV Kannada||Season 1|
|4||2016||Super Minute||Colors Kannada||Season 2|
|5||2017||Super Minute||Colors Kannada||Season 3|
Awards and nominations
|2007||Udaya Film Award for Best Male Actor||Udaya Film Awards||Cheluvina Chittara||Won|
|2007||Cine Gandha Awards for Best Male Actor||Cine Gandha Awards||Cheluvina Chittara||Won|
|2008||Filmfare Award for Best Actor||Filmfare Awards South||Gaalipata||Won|
|2008||Most Popular Actor||Suvarna Film Awards||Gaalipata||Won|
|2009||Filmfare Award for Best Actor||Filmfare Awards South||Maleyali Jotheyali||Won|
|2014||Filmfare Award for Best Actor||Filmfare Awards South||Shravani Subramanya||Nominated|
- Refers to the year in which the ceremony was held.
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