Nassar (actor)

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Nassar at Oru Kadhai Sollattumaa Audio Launch.jpg
Nassar at Oru Kadhai Sollattumaa Audio Launch
President of South IndianNadigar Sangam
Assumed office
Vice PresidentKarunas, Ponvannan
Preceded byR. Sarath Kumar
Personal details
Born (1958-03-05) 5 March 1958 (age 61)
Chengalpattu, Madras State, India
(now in Tamil Nadu, India)
ResidenceChennai, Tamil Nadu, India
OccupationFilm actor, producer, director

M. Nassar (born 5 March 1958) is a polyglot Indian film actor, director, producer, dubbing artist and playback singer who mainly works in the South Indian film industry. He is the incumbent leader of the Nadigar Sangam.[1]

Nassar made his acting debut in K. Balachander movie Kalyana Agathigal in 1985 portraying a secondary supporting role, before moving on to play villainous roles. With breakthrough role came through his performance in Nayakan (1987), he became one of the most important actor in Indian cinema.[2] He subsequently became a regular in Mani Ratnam and Kamal Haasan ventures. He speaks fluent Hindi, Tamil, Urdu, English, Arabic, Telugu, Kannada and Malayalam.[3]

Early life and education[edit]

Nassar was born on 5 March 1958 to Mehaboob Basha and Mumtaz in Tamil Nadu, India. He studied in St. Joseph's Higher Secondary School (Chengalpattu). He moved to Chennai (then Madras) after school, where he finished his pre-university at Madras Christian College. At Madras Christian College, he was an active member of the Dramatic Society. Later for a brief time, he worked in the Indian Air Force. He trained in two acting schools: the South Indian Film Chamber of Commerce's Film Institute and the Tamil Nadu Institute for Film and Television Technology.[4][5][6][7][8]


Nassar made his acting debut in K. Balachander's Kalyana Agathigal (1985) portraying a secondary supporting role, before moving on to play villainous roles in S. P. Muthuraman's Velaikaran (1987) and Vanna Kanavugal (1987). He played the protagonist in Yuhi Sethu's Kavithai Paada Neramillai (1987), though his breakthrough role came through his performance as a police officer in Mani Ratnam's Nayakan (1987). He subsequently became a regular in Mani Ratnam and Kamal Haasan's ventures, appearing in pivotal character roles in Roja (1992), Thevar Magan (1992), Bombay (1995) and Kuruthipunal (1995).

Nassar made his directorial debut with Avatharam (1995), a film based on the backdrop of a folk art troupe. Starring Revathi as his co-star, Nassar stated that the idea had come to him as a result of his childhood memories of watching theru koothu being performed on the streets alongside his father. The film won critical acclaim, but failed to become a commercially successful venture.[9] Soon afterwards, he made Devathai (1997), stating he remembered a story he had first heard as a child, which became the "creative seed for this film" about reincarnation.[9] He stated that his immediate busy schedule had subsequently cost him a role in Aamir Khan's Lagaan (2001).[10] He subsequently continued to work in films in the late 1990s, portraying a blind musician in Rajiv Menon's Minsara Kanavu (1997), a political leader in Mani Ratnam's Iruvar (1997) and as the father of a pair of separated twins in S. Shankar's Jeans (1998).

Personal life[edit]

Nassar is married to Producer turned Politician, Kameela and they have three sons. The eldest, Abdul Asan Faizal was initially reported to be making his acting debut in a film to be produced by T. Siva, but eventually did not do so.[11] In 2014, he was involved in a serious road accident but recovered after being critically injured.[12] Their second son, Luthfudeen, made his acting debut in A. L. Vijay's Saivam (2014) portraying the grandson of the character played by Nassar.[13] Their third son Abi Mehdhi Hassan featured in Nassar's independent film Sun Sun Thatha (2012)[14] and then potrayed a vital role in film Kadaram Kondan (2019) opposite Akshara Haasan.[15]


  1. ^ "Nadigar Sangam elections 2015 : Results". Retrieved 19 October 2015.
  2. ^
  3. ^
  4. ^ "Nasser: a one-man industry". The Hindu. 23 February 2006. Retrieved 19 October 2015.
  5. ^ "Nasser — fearless and forthright". The Hindu. 10 September 2004. Retrieved 19 October 2015.
  6. ^ "Mr. Versatile". The Hindu. 13 March 2009. Retrieved 19 October 2015.
  7. ^ "Reviving an old connection". The Hindu. 1 September 2009. Retrieved 19 October 2015.
  8. ^ "A perfectionist to the core". The Hindu. 4 August 2007. Retrieved 19 October 2015.
  9. ^ a b "Rediff On The Net, Movies: An interview with Tamil actor-director Nasser". 1 September 1997. Retrieved 19 October 2015.
  10. ^ ", Movies: The Nasser Interview". 10 January 2002. Retrieved 19 October 2015.
  11. ^ "Actor's son makes his debut - - Tamil Movies News - Nasser Shiva Mariyadhai". Retrieved 19 October 2015.
  12. ^ "Nasser's son recovers following road accident - The Times of India". 24 May 2014. Retrieved 19 October 2015.
  13. ^ "Actor Nassar`s son to make his debut". 28 January 2014. Retrieved 19 October 2015.
  14. ^ "Nassar directs, son debuts - The Times of India". 10 November 2012. Retrieved 19 October 2015.
  15. ^ "'I didn't get 'Kadaram Kondan' because I'm Nasser's son,' says Abi Haasan". The Hindu. 10 July 2019. Retrieved 18 July 2019.

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