Arun Vijay at Vaa Press Meet
19 November 1977|
Chennai, Tamil Nadu, India
|Other names||Arun Kumar|
Kavitha Vijayakumar (Sister)|
Dr. Anitha Vijayakumar (Sister)
Vanitha Vijayakumar (Half-sister)
Preetha Vijayakumar (Half-sister)
Sridevi Vijaykumar (Half-sister)
Manjula Vijayakumar (Step-mother)
Arun Vijay (born 19 November 1977), formerly known as Arunkumar, is an Indian actor. He is the only son of veteran film actor Vijayakumar and has been active in the Tamil film industry since 1995. He has his license to skydive from the United States Parachute Association.
Early life and family
Arun Vijay was born into a film family as the only son to actor Vijayakumar and his first wife Muthukannu. He studied at Don Bosco Maticulation Primary School, Egmore. After completing his schooling, Arun joined Loyola college for his higher studies. He has two eldest sisters Kavitha, who has acted in a single film, Coolie, and Anitha. Arun Vijay's step mother is actress Manjula Vijayakumar, who played lead roles in over 100 films in the 1970s, while his half-sisters Vanitha, Preetha and Sridevi have also appeared in several films.
In 2006, Arun Vijay married Aarthi, daughter of film producer Dr. N. S. Mohan and a post-graduate in Psychology, with whom he has a daughter, Purvi and a son, Arnav Vijay. In 2010, Kavitha's daughter Hasini married N. S. Mohan's son Hemanth, who is a co-producer of Feather Touch Entertainments and has also acted alongside Arun Vijay in Malai Malai.
Debut Success (1995)
Arun Vijay had a desire towards acting since childhood. He had developed a strong interest by watching his father during film shoots. In order to achieve his goal of becoming an actor, Arun's father encouraged him to join classes for extracurricular activities such as dancing, swimming, skating and horse-riding. Arun started getting film offers when he was in tenth grade but his father wanted him to complete his schooling before acting in films.
Arun Vijay signed on for an A. R. Rahman musical titled Love Story to be his acting debut, but the delay of that project meant that he accepted Anbalaya Films' offer of Sundar C's Murai Mappillai (1995). Arun was just 18 years old when he had signed to act in Murai Mapillai. This made him one of the youngest actors to debut as a hero in the Tamil film industry. Murai Mapillai had a star cast which included actors like Manivannan, K. Prabakaran, Kalaranjini, Goundamani and Senthil. The film was released on December 1995. Arun was praised for his dance and fight sequences in the movie.
Career Slump (1996-2000)
In 1996 Arun's second film Priyam was released. The film's music was composed by Vidyasagar. The songs became a huge hit among the Tamil audience especially the song "Dilruba Dilruba" It was one of the top songs in 1996 and was choreographed well in the movie. It proved that Arun was a versatile dancer.
Following Priyam's release, Arun signed for two films Kathirunda Kadhal and Ganga Gowri under Ganga Gowri Productions. Both the films were released in 1997. Kathirunda Kadhal was Arun's first film with Suvalakshmi.
In 1998 Arun had the opportunity to play the lead role in director Balasekaran's film Thulli Thirintha Kaalam. The film was produced by Kavithalayaa Productions, a company owned by K.Balachander. The film was a commercial success and was later remade in Telugu with a different cast.
In 2000 Arun featured in two films, Kannaal Pesavaa and Anbudan. Kannal Pesavaa released in August and it was Arun's second film with actors Suvalakshmi, Goundamani and Senthil.Following Kannal Pesavaa, Anbudan released in November, the film had two heroines Meena and Rambha. The film had a unique story line but failed to make it big in the box office because of poor marketing and publicity due to budget restraints. Arun's acting was later appreciated when the film was telecast on Raj tv.
In 2001 Arun played the role of a civil engineer in Pandavar Bhoomi, the film was directed by Cheran. Pandavar Bhoomi was the first movie in which Arun and his father Vijayakumar had acted together. Vijayakumar played the role of Arun's father in the movie. The film was a success in the box office, but had to be taken off movie theatres because of the release of Aalavandhan which was a big budget film during that time. Pandavar Bhoomi proved Arun's potentials and it had won the Tamil Nadu State award for Best film (Second Prize) in 2001.
Arun's next film after Pandavar Bhoomi was Mutham. The film was initially titled Muthamidalamma but had to be changed to Mutham after the censor screening. Mutham was directed by S.A. Chandrasekhar and was the first film to be shot using digital cinematography in tamil cinema.
Career Slump (2004-2008)
Following the success of Iyarkai, Arun acted in director Ramesh Selvan's Jananam. Arun toiled hard for his role in Jananam. He had high hopes for this film as the film had a very good story line but it had to go through a lot of problems during the production period. Firstly, the film's heroine Priyanka Trivedi could not fulfill her scheduled commitments in the film as she got married in 2003, the producer was not able to change the heroine as they had already filmed major portions of the film, this resulted in the film being released without a proper screenplay and an edited story line. The producer then had a huge loss and was not able to release the film despite having a scheduled release date. After encountering all these difficulties, Jananam was finally released in theaters, but it failed to make a mark, despite Arun's good acting as the screenplay was not good and the story was incomplete. However, critics appreciated Arun's acting in the movie.
Breakthrough and Career Success (2009-Present)
In October 2006 he had changed his name from Arunkumar to Arun Vijay, hoping that a new name would bring better luck for him. In 2009, Arun Vijay opted against starring in low budget films and opted to collaborate with his father-in-law's production house Feather Touch Entertainment for his future projects. The first venture, Malai Malai directed by A. Venkatesh, became a commercial success. While the next film, Maanja Velu (2010) by the same team, was also a success. He then appeared in Magizh Thirumeni's action-thriller, Thadaiyara Thaakka (2012), marking a move away from his previous two masala films. The film, which featured Mamta Mohandas alongside Arun Vijay, became a super hit.
In spite of being a very talented actor Arun vijay had to wait for 17 years to get recognized as a good hero in Tamil film industry. Thadaiyara Thaakka was the biggest hit in Arun Vijay's career. Arun's talent and hard work was finally recognized by a wider audience.
After Thadaiyara Thaakka Arun starred in Yennai Arindhaal with actor Ajith Kumar. Yennai Arindhaal was also Arun's first film with director Gautham Menon. Arun played the role of Victor, an antagonist in the film. In order to enhance the character of Victor, Arun said that he had worked at the gym for more than 6 hours a day.He was also on a high protein diet. Arun's efforts proved to be fruitful as he was well appreciated by Ajith Kumar and Gautham Menon for his dedication and hard work. Arun's performance had an overwhelming response from the audience.The same year, he debuted in Telugu through the film Bruce Lee – The Fighter as the lead antagonist. He also made his Kannada debut as the lead antagonist through the movie Chakravyuha in 2016. The actor has completed his fourth successive film under the Feather Touch Entertainment banner, Vaa Deal co-starring Karthika Nair. Vaa Deal would be releasing in 2018.
On September 1, 2015 Arun launched his own production company In Cinemas Entertainment (ICE). Arun had said that he had launched this company to identify and provide an opportunity to ambitious and talented youngsters. Arun's first production venture was Kuttram 23, a medical crime thriller directed by Arivazhagan. Arun acted as a police officer for the first time in his career. The film was Arun's 23rd film and was expected to release during the Pongal festival but the producers were not able to get enough theaters to screen the film due to the release of Bairavaa. The film was then postponed to release on March 3, 2017. The film had a special screening for distributors before the release. Screening films for distributors was the norm in the Tamil film industry a couple of decades ago but this tradition gradually faded and films were bought by distributors based on the actor's star value. Kuttram 23 released on March 3, 2017 and had positive reviews from critics and the audience.
All the films he enacted are in lead roles, unless otherwise noted.
|1998||Thulli Thirintha Kalam||Ashok||Tamil|
|2003||Iyarkai||Ship Captain Mukundan||Tamil|
|2006||Azhagai Irukkirai Bayamai Irukkirathu||Prem||Tamil||Guest Appearance|
|2015||Yennai Arindhaal||Victor Manohar||Tamil||Main Antagonist |
Edison Award for Best Villain
SIIMA Award for Best Actor in a Negative Role
Nominated, Filmfare Award for Best Supporting Actor – Tamil
|Bruce Lee||Deepak Raj||Telugu||Main Antagonist|
|2016||Chakravyuha||Omkar||Kannada||Nominated, SIIMA Award for Best Actor In A Negative Role|
|Chekka Chivantha Vaanam||Thyagu||Tamil||Post-Production|
|2012||Thadaiyara Thaakka||"Poondamalli Thaan"||Thaman||Sung only hummings|
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- "Game changers?". The Hindu. 3 March 2017.
- "Kuttram 23 movie review: Vijay stars in a wonderfully taut Sherlockian mystery". Hindustantimes.com. 3 March 2017.