Renji Panicker

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Renji Panicker
BornNedumudi, Kerala, India
Other namesRenji
OccupationDirector, Screenwriter, Actor, Film Producer
Years active1989 –present
Spouse(s)Aneta Miriam Thomas
Parent(s)Kesava Panicker and Leelamani Amma

Renji Panicker is an Indian journalist, scriptwriter, producer, actor and director best known for his Malayalam films. He made his debut as a director with Bharatchandran IPS in 2005.[1]

Early life[edit]

He was the youngest son among three children born to Kesava Panicker and Leelamani Amma at Nedumudi, Alleppey. He did his bachelors in commerce from Sanatana Dharma College, Alappuzha (S.D college, Alappuzha) and certificate in Journalism from Press Club, Thiruvananthapuram. He earned a master's degree in Journalism from Kerala University, Karyavattom.[2]


Panicker began his career as a journalist. He started off as a reporter for magazines and publications. During an interview, while working for Chithrabhumi, a film magazine, he met director Shaji Kailas, who led him into the world of cinema and within a short time became one of the most wanted scriptwriters of Malayalam cinema. Renji scripted several commercially successful films for Shaji Kailas, including Dr. Pasupathy (1990), Thalastaanam (1992), Sthalathe Pradhana Payyans (1993), Ekalavyan (1993), Mafia (1993), Commissioner(1994), and The King (1995). The Renji Panicker-Shaji Kailas team elevated Suresh Gopi into a bankable lead actor during the early-1990s. He is known for his collaboration with director Joshiy, which included the films Lelam (1997) and Pathram (1999). He became a film director and directed two films. He is one of the managing directors of the Malayalam newspaper Metrovaartha.

Renji has taken several cameo roles in his own films. However, he gained popularity as an actor for his role in Ohm Shanthi Oshaana (2014). He acted in numerous films, with notable roles in Njaan (2014), Premam (2015), Jacobinte Swargarajyam (2016), Thoppil Joppan (2016), Alamara (2017), Godha (2017) and Bhayanakam (2018).

Personal life[edit]

Renji Panicker is married to Anitha Mariam Thomas, his classmate at Kerala University. They have twin sons, Nithin Renji Panicker and Nikhil Renji Panicker, and lived in Alleppey before shifting to Cochin.[3]

Film career[edit]

While interviewing director Shaji Kailas, for a film magazine in 1990, he was impressed by Renji's language and asked him to do a script for him. Renji, who was an active politician since his college days tried out a political satire, Dr. Pasupathy, that turned out to be a hit. But the success of his debut film failed to bring recognition. His next venture Akashakottayile Sulthan, in 1991, directed by Jayaraj, with Sreenivasan in the main role, bombed. This made Renji to rethink film as a career. Upon Kailas' insistence, Renji made another attempt in 1992. Thalastaanam, revolving around campus politics was a hit and marked the beginning of the Shaji-Renji combination.

In the year 1993, Renji penned Sthalathe Pradhana Payyans. Directed by Kailas, this film was a turning point in the life of Jagadish, who was till then slotted into comic roles. Jagadish played the role of a common man who overnight becomes the home minister of the state. Sthalathe Pradhana Payyans completed 150 days in theatres, establishing Renji Panicker as one of the leading script writers in Malayalam cinema. Next was Ekalavyan, released in May 1993. Directed by Kailas, Ekalavyan was an action thriller revolving around the unholy nexus of drug mafia-godmen and politicians. Appearing in the lead role of a police officer, Suresh Gopi established himself as the next star of Malayalam cinema. Ekalavyan completed 150 days in most theatres. Mafia then revolved around Bangalore underworld. Directed by Kailas with Gopi as hero, it was released in 1993, making Renji the most expensive script-writer in Malyalam film.[4]

In 1994,Kailas/Panicker created Commissioner, a police film, which completed a run of 200 days in theatres. Gopi appeared in the title role and the film became the biggest grosser of the year. Shaji/Renji rejoined in 1995, casting Mammootty as the hero of The King, which was released in the end of 1995 and broke records in collections. Thereafter the duo parted ways.[5]

Renji, after a long time wrote a script for director Joshi in 1997. Lelam, another action thriller with Gopi as the hero was again a hit. The same team brought out Pathram the next year. Revolving around print media and the politics surrounding it, this flick is best remembered for dialog. The continuous run of hits came to an end in 2001. Renji's combination with Joshi, Dubai bombed. This was followed by Praja, another fiasco, the first time Mohanlal appeared in a Renji film. The back to back set backs forced Renji to take a break for three years. In 2005, he followed with Bharatchandran IPS the sequel of Commissioner, released in 1994. Bharatchandran IPS was his directorial debut. He also co-produced this film. This film crossed 100-day run in all major centres and gave a rebirth to Gopi. Renji's second directorial attempt was Roudram, released in 2008, with Mammootty in the main role, Another police story, this film was a success.[6] Renji's next project was The King & the Commissioner in which Mammootty and Gopi played the lead roles, Joseph Alex I.A.S. and Bharathchandran I.P.S., taken from the films The King and Commissioner. It was directed by Kailas. This film had many expectations, as Mammootty and Gopi were reuniting after many years as were Kailas and Panicker.[7] Unfortunately, it also bombed.

Plots and style[edit]

In Panicker's films, valorised heroes have a political viewpoint and are opinionated. They rebuke corrupt higher officials, hegemonic structures and societal perversions. Dialogues are presented for making an impact, often with lengthy and spirited ones to carry the character through the plot conterminously. Panicker uses stuffy English words to deliver the impact with emphasis. Except Dr. Pasupathi and Aakasha Kottayile Sultan all of his films are done with a political backdrop. Political problems and events were always added and magnified in his scripts, which evoked controversies and threats to his life. Panicker's dialogue in Lelam based on a real-life character and jingoistic characters from Commissioner are considered timeless for Mollywood.[8]


Year Title Director Writer Actor
2018 Lelam 2 Yes
2018 Bhayanakam Yes
2018 Kuttanadan Marpappa Photo presence
2018 Kinar Yes
2018 Captain Yes
2017 Masterpiece Yes
2017 Solo Yes
2017 Villain Yes
2017 Viswasapoorvam Mansoor Yes
2017 Ramaleela Yes
2017 Puthan Panam Yes
2017 Godha Yes
2017 Sakhavu Cameo
2017 1971: Beyond Borders Yes
2017 Alamara Yes
2017 Samarpanam Yes
2017 Georgettan's Pooram Yes
2016 Ore Mukham Yes
2016 Aanandam Yes
2016 Thoppil Joppan Yes
2016 Oppam Yes
2016 Oru Muthassi Gadha Yes
2016 Welcome to Central Jail Yes
2016 Angane Thanne Nethave Anchettannam Pinnale Yes
2016 Mohavalayam Yes
2016 Pa Va Yes
2016 Valleem Thetti Pulleem Thetti Yes
2016 Jacobinte Swargarajyam Yes
2016 Pavada Yes
2015 Charlie Yes
2015 Anarkali Yes
2015 Punchirikku Parasparam (Short Film) Yes
2015 Rajamma @ Yahoo Yes
2015 Jamna Pyari Yes
2015 Acha Dhin Yes
2015 Premam Yes
2015 Loham Yes
2015 Haram Yes
2015 Ayal Njanalla Yes
2015 Ennum Eppozhum Yes
2015 Aadu - Oru Bheegara Jeevi Aanu Yes
2015 Picket 43 Yes
2014 Cousins Yes
2014 Njaan Yes
2014 Munnariyippu Yes
2014 Money Ratnam Yes
2014 Om Shanthi Oshaana Yes
2014 Pakida Yes
2012 The King & the Commissioner Yes
2008 Roudram Yes Yes
2005 Bharatchandran IPS Yes Yes
2001 Dubai Yes
2001 Praja Yes
1999 Pathram Yes
1997 Lelam Yes
1995 The King Yes
1994 Commissioner Yes Yes
1993 Mafia Yes Yes
1993 Ekalavyan Yes Yes
1993 Sthalathe Pradhana Payyans Yes Yes
1992 Thalastaanam Yes Yes
1991 Aakasha Kottayile Sultan Yes
1990 Dr. Pasupathy Yes



  1. ^ "Renji Panicker's next flick". Yahoo! Movies. Archived from the original on 9 July 2008.
  2. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2 April 2015. Retrieved 31 March 2015.
  3. ^ [1] Archived 1 April 2014 at the Wayback Machine.
  4. ^ "Renji Panicker busy scripting two mammoth projects".
  5. ^ "Renji Panicker - Movies, Biography, News, Age & Photos - BookMyShow". BookMyShow.
  6. ^ - Roudram Review. Mammootty, Manju, Lalu Alex, Saikumar, Vijayaraghavan, Rajan.P.Dev, Janardhanan, Shammi Thilakan, Subair, T.P.Madhavan, Jayakrishnan, Spadikam George, Maya Moushmi, Urmila Unni. Retrieved on 2016-09-30.
  7. ^ Day of the action heroes. The Hindu (2012-03-22). Retrieved on 2016-09-30.
  8. ^ Fire Brand @25 - Page 3.

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