Dennis Joseph

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Dennis Joseph
Dennis joseph.jpg
Dennis Joseph in 1980
Born(1957-10-20)20 October 1957
Died10 May 2021(2021-05-10) (aged 63)
Ettumanoor, Kottayam, Kerala, India
Alma materDeva Matha College, Kuravilangad (B.Sc.)
Occupation(s)Scriptwriter, Director, Journalist
Years active1985–2021

Dennis Joseph (20 October 1957 – 10 May 2021)[1][2] was an Indian scriptwriter and director known for his work in Malayalam films. He was active during the 1980s and early 1990s. He frequently collaborated with directors Joshi and Thambi Kannanthanam. He is known for scripting films including Nirakkoottu (1985), Rajavinte Makan (1986), Shyama (1986), New Delhi (1987), No.20 Madras Mail (1990), Kottayam Kunjachan (1990), Indrajaalam (1990), Akashadoothu (1993), Palayam (1994), and F.I.R. (1999). He also directed five films, including Manu Uncle, which won the National Film Award for Best Children's Film in 1988 and the Kerala State Film Award for the Best Children's Film in 1989.

Early life[edit]

Dennis was born on 20 October 1957 in Ettumanoor, Kottayam, Kerala, India, to M. N. Joseph and Eliyamma Joseph.[3] His father worked in the Indian Air Force, while his mother worked as a local teacher.[4] However, he was also born into a film-making family, being a nephew of actors Jose Prakash and Prem Prakash.[5] He was also the nephew to Francis Prakash, who would go on to be a producer of the 1974 film Shapamoksham.[4] He attended the Ettumanoor Government High School, followed by Deva Matha College, Kuravilangad, where he studied for a BS.c. degree in chemistry.[3][4]


Dennis's career began at the Malayalam-language film magazine Cut Cut, where he worked as a sub-editor to the cartoonist B. M. Gafoor. During his stint at the magazine, he interviewed prominent actors in the Malayalam film industry, as well as spending time at filming locations.[4] Dennis made his debut into cinema in 1985, as the scriptwriter for the Jeassy film Eeran Sandhya, a film which saw Mammootty star alongside Shobana, Rahman and Joseph's uncle Jose Prakash.[4][5] He followed this by writing the screenplay for Nirakkoottu, also in 1985.[3] Directed by Joshiy, Nirakkoottu, whose cast included Mammootty, Urvashi, Lizzy and Sumalatha, told the story of a prisoner who seeks revenge for his wife's murder.[6]

Nirakkoottu was a success, leading Dennis to write a series of other films in the subsequent years. This included Rajavinte Makan, loosely adapted from Rage of Angels, a novel by Sidney Sheldon, which was released in 1986. Directed by Thampi Kannanthanam, this film was a huge success at the box office. Appearing as Vincent Gomas, a crime boss, Mohanlal successfully mesmerized the moviegoers and the film raised his stardom.[7] Similarly, after around many flops, Mammootty was in the darkest days of his career in the period 1986–87, when Dennis scripted New Delhi.[8] Directed by Joshiy, this film was also a loose adaptation of an English novel, Irving Wallace's The Almighty. Completely shot in and around Delhi, and went on to become the comeback film of Mammootty.[9]

In 1988, Dennis made his directorial debut with critically acclaimed Manu Uncle starring Mammootty,[citation needed] and the film featured a comedic police officer played by Suresh Gopi.[10] It won the National Film Award for Best Children's Film in 1988 and the Kerala State Film Award for the Best Children's Film in 1989.[citation needed]

Dennis continued writing scripts throughout the 1990s and 2000s; his last released film to date being 2013's Geethanjali, directed by Priyadarshan. He then took a hiatus from writing until 2020 when he announced a collaboration with director Omar Lulu on a film called Power Star.[11]

Personal life and death[edit]

Dennis was married to Leena and had three children – Elizabeth, Rossy, and Jose.[4]

He died on 10 May 2021, in Kottayam following a heart attack.[3][12][5][13][14]



As writer[edit]

Year Title Director Notes Ref.
1985 Eeran Sandhya Jeassy [4]
Nirakkoottu Joshiy [17]
1986 Sayam Sandhya [18]
Aayiram Kannukal [19]
Shyama [citation needed]
Nyayavidhi Dialogues Only [18]
Veendum [5]
Pranamam Bharathan [20]
Rajavinte Makan Thambi Kannanthanam [17]
1987 New Delhi Joshiy [17]
Bhoomiyile Rajakkanmar Thambi Kannanthanam [citation needed]
Kathakku Pinnil K. G. George [18]
Vazhiyorakazchakal Thambi Kannanthanam [19]
1988 Dhinarathrangal Joshiy [21]
Thanthram [5]
Sangham [19]
1989 Nair Saab [22]
1990 Indrajaalam Thambi Kannanthanam [citation needed]
Kottayam Kunjachan T. S. Suresh Babu [19]
No.20 Madras Mail Joshiy [23]
Oliyampukal Hariharan [20]
1991 Thudar Katha Himself Story Only [24]
1992 Kizhakkan Pathrose T. S. Suresh Babu [25]
Mahanagaram T. K. Rajeev Kumar [26]
Maanyanmar T. S. Suresh Babu [27]
1993 Sarovaram Jeassy [28]
Arthana I. V. Sasi Story Only [citation needed]
Akashadoothu Sibi Malayil [20]
Gandharvam Sangeeth Sivan [5]
1994 Palayam T. S. Suresh Babu [29]
1995 Agrajan Himself [24]
Indian Military Intelligence T. S. Suresh Babu [30][31]
1997 Bhoopathi Joshiy [32]
Shibiram T. S. Suresh Babu [33]
1998 F. I. R. Shaji Kailas [34]
2002 Phantom Biju Varkey [35]
2004 Vajram Pramod Pappan [11]
2005 Thaskara Veeran [11]
December Asok R. Nath [citation needed]
2006 Chirattakalippattangal Jose Thomas [36]
2007 Abraham & Lincoln Pramod Pappan [citation needed]
Ayur Rekha G. M. Manu [37]
2009 Kadha, Samvidhanam Kunchakko Haridas Keshavan [38]
Patham Nilayile Theevandi Joshy Mathew [36]
2010 Kanyakumari Express T. S. Suresh Babu [28]
2013 Geethanjali Priyadarshan Dialogues Only [11]
2014 Thomson Villa Abin Jacob [20]
TBA Power Star Omar Lulu [11]

As director[edit]

Year Title Notes
1988 Manu Uncle Written by Shibu Chakravarthy
1989 Adharvam
1990 Appu Written by Sreekumaran Thampi
1991 Thudar Katha
1995 Agrajan


  1. ^ "Scriptwriter & director Dennis Joseph no more". The Times of India. 11 May 2021. Retrieved 15 May 2021.
  2. ^ Kumar, P. K. Ajith (10 May 2021). "Adieu to Malayalam cinema's master writer". The Hindu. India. ISSN 0971-751X. Retrieved 10 May 2021.
  3. ^ a b c d Staff Reporter (10 May 2021). "Dennis Joseph no more". The Hindu. ISSN 0971-751X. Retrieved 10 May 2021.
  4. ^ a b c d e f g Onmanorama Staff (10 May 2021). "Dennis Joseph, who scripted many hit Malayalam films, dies". Malayala Manorama. Retrieved 11 May 2021.
  5. ^ a b c d e f "Malayalam screenwriter-director Dennis Joseph passes away". The Indian Express. 10 May 2021. Retrieved 10 May 2021.
  6. ^ Akhila Menon (27 January 2017). "Past To Present: Who Can Replace Mammootty & Sumalatha If Nirakkoottu Is Remade Now?". FilmiBeat. Retrieved 11 May 2021.
  7. ^ Aradhya Kurup (27 October 2016). "From Shakespeare to Sidney Sheldon — Malayalam films inspired by Foreign books". Retrieved 11 May 2021.
  8. ^ Abhijith (26 September 2016). "Malayalam Films Which Gave The Much Needed Breakthrough To Our Stars!". FilmiBeat. Retrieved 11 May 2021.
  9. ^ Abhijith (25 July 2017). "30 Years Of Mammootty's New Delhi: Some Interesting Facts About The Movie". FilmiBeat. Retrieved 11 May 2021.
  10. ^ Sherin (28 May 2020). "Mollywood's Top 5 Last Minute Changes That was Worth Gold - Mollywood Live". Mollywood Live. Retrieved 11 May 2021. Minnal Prathapan
  11. ^ a b c d e Silpa Rajan (11 May 2021). "Omar Lulu on Dennis Joseph's sudden demise: Sir had completed the script of 'Power Star' and we had a chat two days ago - Times of India". The Times of India. Retrieved 11 May 2021.
  12. ^ Kumar, P. k Ajith (10 May 2021). "Adieu to Malayalam cinema's master writer". The Hindu. ISSN 0971-751X. Retrieved 10 May 2021.
  13. ^ "Dennis Joseph, scriptwriter of 'Rajavinte Makan', 'No.20 Madras Mail' and other hit films, dies". The Week. Retrieved 10 May 2021.
  14. ^ "Malayalam film director and screenwriter Dennis Joseph passes away". Deccan Herald. 10 May 2021. Retrieved 10 May 2021.
  15. ^ "ഡെന്നിസ് ജോസഫ്". M3DB.COM. Retrieved 17 May 2021.
  16. ^ "List of Malayalam Movies screenplay written by Dennis Joseph". Retrieved 17 May 2021.
  17. ^ a b c P. K. Ajith Kumar (10 May 2021). "Adieu to Dennis Joseph, Malayalam cinema's master writer". The Hindu. Retrieved 11 May 2021.
  18. ^ a b c Onmanorama Staff (11 May 2021). "From back-to-back flops to housefull shows: Dennis Joseph on Mammootty's comeback via 'New Delhi'". Malayala Manorama. Retrieved 11 May 2021.
  19. ^ a b c d Service, Uniindia News (10 May 2021). "Noted Malayalam scriptwriter Dennis Joseph dies". United News of India. Retrieved 11 May 2021.
  20. ^ a b c d Shibu B S (11 May 2021). "Dennis Joseph: From human relations to vengeful underworld, he gifted us everything - The New Indian Express". Retrieved 11 May 2021.
  21. ^ Miya Mathew (3 June 2016). "5 magical director-scriptwriter combinations!". Retrieved 11 May 2021.
  22. ^ "Dennis Joseph: The man who made Mammootty and Mohanlal superstars - The Federal". The Federal. 11 May 2021. Retrieved 11 May 2021.
  23. ^ "Did you know Mammootty wasn't part of the original cast of 'No. 20 Madras Mail'?". The Times of India. 27 January 2021. Retrieved 11 May 2021.
  24. ^ a b P. C. Thomas (11 May 2021). "Legendary Malayalam scriptwriter and director Dennis Joseph passes away". News Track. Retrieved 11 May 2021.
  25. ^ Sruthi Hemachandran (11 May 2021). "Screenwriter-Director Dennis Joseph Passes Away; Mohanlal, Mammootty & Other Celebs Offer Condolences". FilmiBeat. Retrieved 11 May 2021.
  26. ^ "Famous screenwriter and director Dennis Joseph passes away". Keralakaumudi Daily. 10 May 2021. Retrieved 11 May 2021.
  27. ^ Ashish Rajadhyaksha; Paul Willemen (2014). Encyclopedia of Indian Cinema. Routledge. p. 278. ISBN 9781135943189.
  28. ^ a b "Mohanlal, Mammootty, other stars mourn demise of Dennis Joseph". Mathrubhumi. Retrieved 11 May 2021.
  29. ^ "Dennis Joseph no more". The Hindu. 10 May 2021. Retrieved 11 May 2021.
  30. ^ "Indian Military Intelligence". Retrieved 2 November 2014.
  31. ^ "Indian Military Intelligence". Retrieved 2 November 2014.
  32. ^ "Bhoopathi (1997)". FilmiBeat. Retrieved 11 May 2021.
  33. ^ "Shibiram". Retrieved 11 May 2021.
  34. ^ "When this 'creator' of Rajavinte Makan, New Delhi drew a blank..." Keralakaumudi Daily. 19 December 2019. Retrieved 11 May 2021.
  35. ^ "Biju Varkey movies list". Retrieved 11 May 2021.
  36. ^ a b "Dennis Joseph – Screenwriter". Retrieved 11 May 2021.
  37. ^ "Ayur Rekha - Preview". FilmiBeat. 24 September 2007. Retrieved 11 May 2021.
  38. ^ "Kadha, Samvidhanam Kunchakko (2009)". Rotten Tomatoes. Retrieved 11 May 2021.

External links[edit]