Nagraj Manjule

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Nagraj Manjule
Manjule (right) at the 65th National Film Awards Function, in New Delhi
Born (1978-08-24) 24 August 1978 (age 45)
  • Actor
  • director
  • producer
  • poet
  • scriptwriter
SpouseGargee Kulkarni (m.2017)
Sunita Manjule
(m. 1997; div. 2014)

Nagraj Popatrao Manjule (Marathi pronunciation: [naɡɾaːd͡ʒ maɲd͡ʒuɭeː]; born 24 August 1978) is an Indian film director, actor, producer, scriptwriter, poet, screenwriter, filmmaker and he works in the Marathi Cinema, best known for his Marathi film Sairat, short-film Pistulya for which he received National Film Award in Non-Feature Film category.

At the 61st National Film Awards, Fandry won the Indira Gandhi Award for Best Debut Film of a Director.[2] In 2018, Manjule published a book of poetry in Marathi titled Unhachya Katavirudhha which won the Bhairuratan Damani Sahitya Puraskar.[3] He owns a wrestling team called 'Veer Marathwada' in Zee Maharashtra Kusti Dangal.[4]

Early life and education[edit]

Manjule grew up in Jeur village in the Solapur district of Maharashtra.[5] He belongs to the traditionally-nomadic Waddar community, a Dravidian tribe.

He earned his M.A. in Marathi literature from University of Pune, followed by a master's in communication studies from New Arts, Science and Commerce College, Ahmednagar.[6]


Manjule is strongly inspired by Dr. B. R. Ambedkar, the emancipator of downtrodden and the father of the Indian constitution.[7] His films are deeply rooted in his own experience growing up as a dalit in rural Maharashtra.[8] His films have focused on the plights faced by members of these communities, including social discrimination at the hands of high-caste communities as well as the resulting economic hardships.

His first National Award-winning short film Pistulya is a reflection of his 'felt experience'.[9] The film focuses on the desire of a dalit boy to attend school, and his inability to do so because of his family's poverty and a deep-seated disdain for formal education within his community.

His debut feature film, Fandry, was released in February 2014; the word means "pig" in the Kaikadi language.[10]

Manjule's second film, Sairat, premiered at the 66th Berlin International Film Festival.[11] Like Fandry and Pistulya, it deals with caste discrimination and honour killing, a practice still widespread in parts of India. Sairat also seeks to address the role of women in society, with the character of Archie (Archana Patil), the female protagonist of Sairat, garnering both popular and critical acclaim. Sairat is currently the highest grossing Marathi film of all time.[12] Manjule made his directorial debut in Hindi films with Jhund starring Amitabh Bachchan.[13]

In 2019, Manjule hosted Marathi Kaun Banega Crorepati.[14]


Denotes films that have not yet been released

All films are in Marathi, unless mentioned.

Year Film Actor Director Writer Producer Notes Ref.
2010 Pistulya Yes Yes Yes Yes National Film Award for Best First Non-Feature Film of a Director [15]
2013 Fandry Yes Yes Yes No Indira Gandhi Award for Best Debut Film of a Director [16][17][18][19]
2015 Baji Yes No No No [20]
Highway Yes No No No [21][22]
2016 Sairat Yes Yes Yes Yes Selected For 66th Berlin International Film Festival [23][24][25][26]
The Silence Yes No No No [27][28]
2017 Pavsacha Nibandh No Yes Yes Yes Short film [29][30][31]
2018 Naal Yes No No Yes Indira Gandhi Award for Best Debut Film of a Director [32][33]
2020 Taar Yes No No No Short fiilm [34][35]
2022 Unpaused: Naya Safar Yes Yes Yes Yes Hindi film
Jhund Yes Yes Yes Yes Hindi film (Bollywood Debut) [36][37]
2023 Ghar Banduk Biryani Yes No Yes Yes
TBA Matka King Yes Yes Yes No Hindi film [38]
TBA Khashaba No Yes No Yes Based on K.D. Jadhav [39]


  • Unhachya Kataviruddha – poetry.[40]


Year Awards Categories Ref.
2010 National Film Awards Best First Non-Feature Film
2013 National Film Awards Best Debut Film of a Director
2017 National Film Awards Best Director in Non-Feature Film
(Pavasacha Nibandha)
2017 Filmfare Marathi Awards Best Director
2019 National Film Awards Best Debut Film of a Director


  1. ^ "Sairat fame Nagraj Manjule's ex wife: He made me go for abortions; thrashed me when asked to keep the child". 9 October 2018. Retrieved 10 October 2018.
  2. ^ "Ship of Theseus is best film at National Film Awards". The Financial Express. India. 17 April 2014. Retrieved 17 April 2014.
  3. ^ "नागराजच्या लेखणीतून उतरलेल्या पाच उत्तम कविता". Retrieved 24 August 2018.
  4. ^ "Sai Tamhankar, Nagraj Manjule's team will come face-to-face in wrestling ring". Retrieved 20 October 2018.
  5. ^ Joshi, Namrata (22 December 2015). "The ardour of Nagraj Manjule". The Hindu. Retrieved 24 March 2016.
  6. ^ "Nagraj Manjule Exposing Merit A Hoax of the Caste Society!". Retrieved 19 March 2019.
  7. ^ "Don't idolise film characters, says Nagraj Manjule". The Times of India. Retrieved 5 September 2016.
  8. ^ "Anti-caste Aesthetics and Dalit Interventions in Indian Cinema". Economic and Political Weekly. 55 (38): 7–8. 5 June 2015.
  9. ^ "'Pistulya' depicts deprivation, undying urge for better life". Deccan Herald. 21 May 2011. Retrieved 21 May 2011.
  10. ^ "The caste story is not over yet: Nagraj Manjule". Hindustan Times. March 2014. Retrieved 2 March 2014.
  11. ^ "Meenakshi Shedde, Nagraj Manjule Speak on Berlinale". Retrieved 25 April 2016.
  12. ^ "Sairat: Nagraj Manjule's romantic drama becomes the highest-grossing Marathi film". India Today. Retrieved 12 May 2016.
  13. ^ "Jhund director Nagraj Manujle: 'Fairy tales sell in cinema but it's important to also tell the story of beasts'". The Indian Express. 4 March 2022. Retrieved 28 March 2023.
  14. ^ "Exclusive: Here's how much Nagraj Manjule is getting paid for Kon Honaar Crorepati". The Times of India. Retrieved 17 July 2019.
  15. ^ "'सैराट'च्या नागराज मंजुळेची पहिली शॉर्ट फिल्म 'पिस्तुल्या' पाहा". 8 April 2018. Retrieved 8 April 2018.
  16. ^ "Fandry' (Pig) followed by discussion with Director Nagraj Manjule". Retrieved 21 July 2014.
  17. ^ S, Bageshree (31 December 2013). "Fandry is really my own story". The Hindu. Retrieved 31 December 2013.
  18. ^ "'Fandry' Review: Nagraj Manjule's Exceptional Debut". Retrieved 8 November 2013.
  19. ^ "Fandry: Mumbai Review". 20 October 2013. Retrieved 20 October 2013.
  20. ^ "Shreyas Talpade raises a toast to 'Baji' team as film clocks four years". The Times of India. Retrieved 6 February 2019.
  21. ^ "After Baji, it's Highway for Nagraj". The Times of India. Retrieved 13 January 2017.
  22. ^ "Highway is a confluence of actors and non-actors". The Times of India. Retrieved 13 January 2017.
  23. ^ "You don't need to have a grudge to depict society's harsh realities: 'Sairat' director Nagraj Manjule". Retrieved 27 May 2016.
  24. ^ "No happily ever after endings for Nagraj Manjule". Deccan Herald. 23 May 2017. Retrieved 23 May 2017.
  25. ^ "Sairat' director Nagraj Manjule on the duplicity of Indians on love". Reuters. 26 April 2018. Retrieved 26 April 2018.
  26. ^ "Sairat: Why a doomed love story has become India's sleeper hit". BBC News. 6 June 2016. Retrieved 7 June 2016.
  27. ^ "The Silence': Goa Film Bazaar Review". 12 December 2015. Retrieved 12 December 2015.
  28. ^ "Marathi film 'The Silence' to release on October 6". Business Standard India. 26 September 2017. Retrieved 26 September 2017.
  29. ^ "Pavsacha Nibandh review: Nagraj Manjule overturns romanticism of rains with a simple tale on social inequity". 16 July 2020. Retrieved 16 July 2020.
  30. ^ "Nagraj Manjule's short films Pavsacha Nibandh, Bibtya and Paywat will be aired on TV". The Times of India. Retrieved 17 July 2020.
  31. ^ "Nagraj Manjule's National award-winning short film to premiere in Pune". The Times of India. Retrieved 2 September 2018.
  32. ^ "'Naal': Five reasons why you shouldn't miss the Nagraj Manjule starrer film". The Times of India. 16 November 2018. Retrieved 16 November 2018.
  33. ^ "Nagraj Manjule returns to acting with Naal". The Times of India. Retrieved 23 October 2018.
  34. ^ "Nagraj Manjule to play postman in short film Taar". Retrieved 26 October 2020.
  35. ^ "नागराज मंजुळे घेऊन येतोय 'तार', टीझर रिलीज". November 2020. Retrieved 1 November 2020.
  36. ^ "Amitabh Bachchan's Jhund, directed by Nagraj Manjule, to debut in theatres on 18 June". 20 February 2021. Retrieved 20 February 2021.
  37. ^ "Jhund': The Nagraj Manjule film starring Amitabh Bachchan to now release in October". The Times of India. Retrieved 8 July 2019.
  38. ^ "Nagraj Manjule teams up with Sidharth Roy Kapur for 'Matka King' series". The Hindu. PTI. 11 January 2022. ISSN 0971-751X. Retrieved 16 May 2022.{{cite news}}: CS1 maint: others (link)
  39. ^ "'Khashaba': Nagraj Manjule announces a biopic on Indian freestyle wrestler Khashaba Jadhav; Poster out!". The Times of India. ISSN 0971-8257. Retrieved 24 April 2023.
  40. ^ "Why Sairat filmmaker Nagraj Manjule's poetry may prove to be his more powerful legacy". 10 December 2017. Retrieved 10 December 2017.
  41. ^ "'Pistulya' wins debut short film award at 58th National film awards". Daily News and Analysis. Retrieved 20 May 2011.
  42. ^ "National Film Awards: Rajkumar best actor, Fandry best debut film". The Times of India. Retrieved 17 April 2014.
  43. ^ "65th national film awards : 'पावसाचा निबंध'च्या नावानं चांगभलं- नागराज मंजुळे". Retrieved 13 April 2018.
  44. ^ "WINNERS OF THE FILMFARE AWARDS MARATHI 2017". Retrieved 27 October 2017.
  45. ^ "Jio Filmfare Awards Marathi 2017: Complete winners' list". The Times of India. Retrieved 28 October 2017.

External links[edit]