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Praveen Kumar Bangalore
Born (1994-08-18) 18 August 1994 (age 23)[1]
Bangalore, Karnataka, India
Residence Bangalore, Karnataka, India
Occupation Film actor,
Years active 2012 – present
Height 5'9
Parent(s) Sivakumar
Relatives Karthi (brother)

Suriya (born 23 July 1975 as Saravanan Sivakumar) is an Indian film actor, producer, philanthropist and television presenter. He has acted in several Tamil films, including the commercially successful films Nandha (2001), Kaakha Kaakha (2003), Pithamagan (2003), Perazhagan (2004), Ghajini (2005), Vel (2007), Vaaranam Aayiram (2008), Ayan (2009),Aadhavan (2009), Singam (2010), 7aum Arivu (2011) . As of 2010,[2] he has won three Tamil Nadu State Film Awards and three Filmfare Awards South, establishing himself as one of the leading contemporary actors in the Tamil film industry.

He became a film distributor after opening Studio Green, which was responsible for producing and distributed a few of his own and his brother Karthi's films. He is the eldest son of actor Sivakumar and married actress Jyothika in 2006, after being engaged for several years. In 2008, he began Agaram Foundation, which funds programmes for preventing early childhood drop-outs.[3] As of 2012, Suriya is the host of the STAR Vijay game show Neengalum Vellalam Oru Kodi.

Early life[edit]

Suriya was born to actor Sivakumar and Lakshmi in Chennai. He is the eldest of three children. His younger brother is actor Karthi and he has a younger sister named Brindha Sivakumar. He attended Padma Seshadri Bala Bhavan School[4] and St. Bede's Anglo Indian Higher Secondary School in Chennai[5] and obtained his under graduate degree B.Com from Loyola College, Chennai.


Early career: 1996–2002[edit]

Suriya debuted in the 1997 film Nerrukku Ner directed by Vasanth and produced by Mani Ratnam. Actor Vijay co-starred with him in this film. [6] In 2001, he starred in Siddique's comedy film Friends, also co-starring Vijay.

His major break came in the form of Nandha, which was directed by Bala. Playing the role of an ex-convict who is very attached to his mother, he received a Tamil Nadu State Film Award for Best Actor.[7] His next venture was Vikraman's Unnai Ninaithu, which was followed by Mounam Pesiyadhe directed by Ameer Sultan.

Breakthrough: 2003–07[edit]

In 2003, he starred in the Gautham Menon's Kaakha Kaakha, a film about the life of a police officer. The film opened to positive reviews with a critic from claiming that "Surya as Anbu Selvan fits the role and this film is certainly a career high for him".[8] Surya's portrayal of a happy-go-lucky village crook with a comic touch in Bala's Pithamagan, along with Vikram, won him Filmfare Award for Best Supporting Actor – Tamil and the film did well commercially.[9] In 2005 he played dual role in Perazhagan, as an aggressive boxer and a handicapped phone booth keeper. Again, Surya's performance won positive reviews from critics with a reviewer describing it as "Surya deserves appreciation for his astounding performance. He is at his best be it humor or action. The actor has scored a hat trick".[10] The film became successful venture in box-office[11] and Surya won his first Filmfare Award for Best Actor – Tamil.[12] That same year, he portrayed the role of a student leader in Mani Ratnam's political drama Aaytha Ezhuthu along with Madhavan and Siddarth.[13] In regard to his performance, the review praised his enactment citing that "Surya has given a finely calibrated performance and is smashing".[14]

Surya signed on to feature in the psychological thriller, Ghajini directed by A. R. Murugadoss in November 2004.[15] He played the role of a patient suffering from short-term memory loss. Ghajini became the third highest grossing film of that year in Tamil.[16] Surya's performance was unanimously praised, with a reviewer from Sify citing that "the film is driven by Surya’s riveting performance".[17] Later he acted in Hari's action film Aaru and the film faced a good response at the box office.[18] Surya's performance fetched positive reviews with a reviewer citing that "Surya keeps you riveted to the seats with another wholesome effort".[19]

In 2006, he acted with Jyothika and Bhumika Chawla in N. Krishna's film Sillunu Oru Kaadhal. The film took a strong opening, but soon faded out and became a moderate success.[20][21] But his performance was praised, with a reviewer from Sify citing that "Surya pitches in with yet another fantastic performance, be it the responsible husband and father, or the cool dude at college".[22]

In 2007, his only release was Vel, which was a commercial hit.[23]

Rise to prominence: 2008–2011[edit]

His next release was a collaboration with Gautham Menon, after the success of Kaakha Kaakha, Suriya began work on Menon's biopic Vaaranam Aayiram in November 2008.[24] Playing dual roles for the third time in his career, Suriya appeared as father and son, with both characters also demanding scenes shot throughout their lives ranging from scenes as a 16-year-old to scenes as a 65-year-old. During the production of the film, Suriya described the project as "unique" and "straight from the heart", describing the physical hardships he endured during the making.[25] He lost weight and prepared a six pack for the film through an eight-month fitness regime without steroids, with the move being a trend-setter for other leading actors from South India.[26][27] The film, which also featured Simran, Sameera Reddy and Divya Spandana in prominent roles, became commercially successful at the box office upon release as well as receiving positive reviews from film critics, with Suriya's performance being lauded. A critic from Rediff labelled the film as his "magnum opus", citing that he is "perfect" and that the film for him is a "justified triumph".[28] Similarly, critics cited Suriya's performance as "outstanding" and claimed that the film "works because of his performance", whilst other reviewers claimed the film was an "out and out Suriya show".[29][30] His portrayals also fetched him several notable awards, including the Filmfare Award for Best Actor – Tamil, a Tamil Nadu State Film Award for Best Actor by the jury and also the Vijay Award for Best Actor for 2008.[31] The film also went on to receive a National Film Award for Best Feature Film in Tamil for 2008.[32]

Suriya with Ram Gopal Varma on the sets of Rakta Charitra

In 2009, Suriya's first release was K. V. Anand's action-thriller Ayan, which went on to become the highest grossing Tamil film of the year. With Suriya portraying the role of a smuggler, the film also featured Prabhu as his guardian and Tamannaah Bhatia as the lead actress. The film was shot extensively across Tanzania, Namibia, Malaysia and India and featured parkour stunts by Suriya, without the use of a stunt double.[33] Upon release, the film won positive reviews citing that the film was a "must watch" and Suriya's performance was yet again acclaimed and he found himself nominated for leading awards and won the Vijay Award for Entertainer of the Year.[34] The film's success saw Suriya emerge as the most profitable leading actor in Tamil films, following a hat trick of large commercial hits, with film journals suggesting that his success was due to "experiments within the commercial format" and he was successful in "avoiding being typecast".[35] His next film, K. S. Ravikumar's action entertainer Aadhavan also achieved commercial success, while Suriya's depiction of a hitman was praised. A critic from labelled it as an "out and out Suriya show", stating that "the film rides on the magic of the actor, and his zany shenanigans alone makes it worth a watch" and cited that "he sings, dances, and fights with absolute sincerity, but when he looks at you with tears in his eyes in an emotional scene tailor-made for him, the applause hits the roof", concluding that it is "completely his film".[36][37]

In 2010, he had his 25th release with Singam directed by Hari, in which he played the role of a police officer from a small village going to work in the city. The film opened to positive reviews with The Hindu noting that "Suriya shows that be it a performance-oriented role or a formulaic concoction he can deliver", while stated "Ultimately it is Suriya who carries the film to the winning post. His passion and the way he brings an ordinary regular larger-than-life hero character alive on screen is lesson for other commercial heroes."[38][39] The film won Suriya the Vijay Award for Best Entertainer again and saw him nominated for the Filmfare Award for Best Actor – Tamil again, and subsequently went on to become the second highest grossing film of the year.[40] He made his Bollywood debut in Ram Gopal Varma's two-part political drama Rakta Charitra in 2010. Suriya subsequently went on to appear as himself in three consecutive guest appearances, appearing alongside Trisha and Madhavan in a song in Manmadhan Ambu (2010), before also starring in K. V. Anand's Ko and Bala's Avan Ivan (2011).

His only release in 2011 that featured him in a starring role was A. R. Murugadoss's science fiction thriller 7aum Arivu. Suriya essayed dual roles in the film, as a circus artist and as the Buddhist monk named Bodhidharma, who lived in the 5th century. The film met with mixed reception, but Suriya's performance was praised. 7aum Arivu became the actor's highest grosser, and subsequently among the top grossing films of the year.[41][42]

Entry in television: 2012–present[edit]

In January 2012, Suriya was named as the official host of the new game show to be presented on STAR Vijay, Neengalum Vellalam Oru Kodi, the Tamil version of Who Wants to Be a Millionaire?, which began airing on 27 February 2012.[43]

His next project is Maattrraan, which sees him collaborate with K. V. Anand again, after Ayan.[44] He is also doing Singam 2,a sequel to his 2010 blockbuster Singam.[45]

Brand ambassador[edit]

Suriya has been the ambassador for many famous enterprises including TVS, Aircel and Sunfeast Biscuits since 2006. He has endorsed Saravana Stores,[46] Bharathi Cements and Navaratna products since 2010.[47] In 2011, he had signed a new deal with Nescafé, Zandu Balm and more recently with Close-Up toothpaste brand as of May 2011.[48]


In 2008, Suriya began the Agaram Foundation,[3] working to help children who drop out of school early in Tamil Nadu. With the Ministry of Education in Tamil Nadu, he created a short commercial video outlining child poverty, labour and lack of education, titled Herova? Zerova?[49]. The film was written and produced by Sivakumar and also starred Joseph Vijay, R. Madhavan and Jyothika. Agaram has sponsored 159 underprevileged students in 2010 for their higher education in various disciplines. With the firm belief that the educated mind can not only eliminate social evils but also aid in the socio-economic upbringing of society, Agaram Foundation works towards providing appropriate learning opportunities to the rural populace who do not otherwise have access to quality education.[3]

He is also an active participant in other philanthropic works such as "Save The Tigers" campaign, which aids in the protection and preservation of Tigers in India, and "REACH", a non-profit that cures TB patients for free using supervised medication programs.[citation needed]

Personal life[edit]

After several years of being engaged, Suriya married actress Jyothika on 11 September 2006,[50] with whom he was paired in seven films: Poovellam Kettuppar, Uyirile Kalanthathu, Kaakha Kaakha, Perazhagan, Maayavi, June R and Sillunu Oru Kaadhal. The couple have two children, daughter Diya (born in August 2007 )[51] and son Dev (7 June 2010).[52]


Year Film Role Notes
1997 Nerrukku Ner Surya
1998 Kaadhale Nimmadhi Chandru
1998 Sandhippoma Vishnu
1999 Periyanna Surya
1999 Poovellam Kettuppar Krishna
2000 Uyirile Kalanthathu Suriya
2001 Friends Chandru
2001 Nandha Nandha Tamil Nadu State Film Award for Best Actor
2002 Unnai Ninaithu Surya
2002 Shree Shree
2002 Mounam Pesiyadhe Gautham
2003 Kaakha Kaakha Anbuselvan ITFA Best Actor Award
Nominated—Filmfare Award for Best Actor – Tamil
2003 Pithamagan Sakthi Filmfare Award for Best Supporting Actor – Tamil
2004 Perazhagan Karthik,
Filmfare Award for Best Actor – Tamil
2004 Aaytha Ezhuthu Michael Vasanth
2005 Maayavi Balayya
2005 Ghajini Sanjay Ramasamy (Manohar) Tamil Nadu State Film Award Special Prize
2005 Aaru Aarumugam (Aaru)
2006 June R Raja Guest appearance
2006 Sillunu Oru Kaadhal Gautham
2007 Vel Vetrivel,
2008 Kuselan Himself Special appearance
2008 Vaaranam Aayiram Krishnan,
Suriya Krishnan
Filmfare Award for Best Actor – Tamil
Tamil Nadu State Film Award Special Prize
Vijay Award for Best Actor
South Scope Award for Stylish Youth Icon of the Year
2009 Ayan Devaraj Velusamy Vijay Award for Entertainer of the Year (also for Aadhavan)
Nominated—Filmfare Award for Best Actor – Tamil
2009 Aadhavan Madhavan Subramaniyam
Vijay Award for Entertainer of the Year(also for Ayan)
2010 Singam Durai Singam Vijay Award for Entertainer of the Year
Nominated—Filmfare Award for Best Actor – Tamil
2010 Rakta Charitra Suriyanarayana Reddy Hindi and Telugu film
Nominated—Screen Award for Most Promising Newcomer – Male (Hindi)
2010 Raththa Sarithiram Surya Nominated—Vijay Award for Best Actor
2010 Manmadhan Ambu Himself Guest appearance
2011 Ko Himself Special appearance
2011 Avan Ivan Himself Guest appearance
2011 7aam Arivu Bodhidharma,
Nominated—Vijay Award for Best Actor
Nominated—Vijay Award for Favourite Hero
Nominated—Filmfare Award for Best Actor – Tamil
2012 Maattrraan Akilan,
2013 Singam 2 Durai Singam Filming


  1. ^ "Dashing Suriya's birthday bash – Tamil Movie News". IndiaGlitz. Retrieved 26 February 2011. 
  2. ^ "Film Fare Awards 2008 announced". 1 August 2009. Retrieved 22 October 2009. 
  3. ^ a b c "About Us". Agaram Foundation. 2008. Retrieved 22 October 2009. 
  4. ^ "Emulate Suriya's example of hard work, students told". The Hindu. 25 August 2006. Retrieved 22 October 2009. 
  5. ^ "Alumni invited to St. Bede's centenary celebrations". The Hindu. 24 November 2007. Retrieved 28 October 2009. 
  6. ^ "1997–98 Kodambakkam babies Page". Retrieved 3 December 2011. 
  7. ^ "Actor Surya: Big break with "Nandha"". Archived from the original on 30 December 2009. Retrieved 30 December 2011. 
  8. ^ "A career high film for Surya". Rediff. 11 August 2003. Retrieved 31 May 2012. 
  9. ^ "Pithamagan sweeps FilmFare Awards". IndiaGlitz. 5 June 2004. Retrieved 31 May 2012. 
  10. ^ "Perazhagan – Surya strikes a hat-trick". IndiaGlitz. 8 May 2004. Retrieved 31 May 2012. 
  11. ^ "Gilli heads the weekly Top Five followed by Perazhagan". IndiaGlitz. 16 June 2004. Retrieved 31 May 2012. 
  12. ^ "Surya shines, Cheran sizzles". IndiaGlitz. 9 July 2005. Retrieved 31 May 2012. 
  13. ^ "Double shooting". The Hindu. 2 January 2004. Retrieved 31 May 2012. 
  14. ^ "Movie review: Aayitha Ezhuthu". Rediff. Retrieved 31 May 2012. 
  15. ^ "Surya replaces Ajit in `Mirattal`!". Sify. 5 November 2004 accessdate=31 May 2012.  Check date values in: |date= (help)
  16. ^ "Tamil box-office 2005". 22 December 2005. Retrieved 31 May 2012. 
  17. ^ "Movie review: Ghajini". 22 December 2005. Retrieved 31 May 2012. 
  18. ^ "Suriya power!". 21 December 2005. Retrieved 31 May 2012. 
  19. ^ "Aaru – Surya is sincere". IndiaGlitz. 9 December 2005. Retrieved 31 May 2012. 
  20. ^ "Extraordinary opening!". 7 September 2006. Retrieved 31 May 2012. 
  21. ^ "Chennai box-office". 4 October 2006. Retrieved 31 May 2012. 
  22. ^ "Movie review: Sillunu Oru Kaadhal". Retrieved 31 May 2012. 
  23. ^ "Gautham buys back VA from Gemini!". 15 October 2007. Retrieved 31 May 2012. 
  24. ^ Kumar, Ashok (28 November 2006). "Hit duo gets together again". The Hindu. Retrieved 7 January 2011. 
  25. ^ Vilakudy, Rajneesh (14 November 2008). "Exclusive: Surya on Vaaranam Aayiram and Ghajini". Rediff. Retrieved 7 January 2011. 
  26. ^ "Abs you like it!". The Hindu. 12 May 2008. Retrieved 7 January 2011. 
  27. ^ Pillai, Sreedhar (4 May 2008). "Power packed". Times of India. Retrieved 7 January 2011. 
  28. ^ Srinivasan, Pavithra (14 November 2008). "It's Surya all the way". Rediff. Retrieved 7 January 2011. It might be just a feather in Gautam's hat. As for Surya, it's an ostrich plume, a justified triumph. 
  29. ^ "Review: Vaaranam Aayiram". Sify. 14 November 2008. Retrieved 7 January 2011. 
  30. ^ "Vaaranam Aaayiram Review". Behindwoods. 14 November 2008. Retrieved 7 January 2011. 
  31. ^ Ramanujam, Srinivasan (2 August 2009). "The glowing filmfare night!". Times of India. Retrieved 7 January 2011. 
  32. ^ "Gautham Menon bags National Award for ‘Varanam Aayiram’". Deccan Chronicle. 24 January 2010. Retrieved 26 February 2011. 
  33. ^ TNN (27 March 2009). "The logic of it all". Times of India. Retrieved 7 January 2011. 
  34. ^ Srinivasan, Pavithra (3 April 2009). "ayan is a must-watch!". Rediff. Retrieved 7 January 2011. 
  35. ^ Pillai, Sreedhar (14 April 2009). "Unstoppable Suriya". Times of India. Retrieved 7 January 2011. 
  36. ^ "Aadhavan is clean fun - Movies". 2009-10-17. Retrieved 2012-08-02. 
  37. ^ "Movie Review:Aadhavan". Retrieved 2012-08-02. 
  38. ^ "Movie Review:Singam- Review". Retrieved 2012-08-02. 
  39. ^ Malathi Rangarajan (2010-06-03). "Arts / Cinema : Singam: This lion emerges king". The Hindu. Retrieved 2012-08-02. 
  40. ^ "Sify-Top 10 Kollywood Hits of 2010". 23 December 2010). Retrieved 26 February 2011.  Check date values in: |date= (help)
  41. ^ "7 Aum Arivu spells magic at box office, Suriya excited". 8 November 2011. Retrieved 26 February 2012. 
  42. ^ "Top 10 Tamil grossers of 2011". Sify. Retrieved 31 December 2011. 
  43. ^ "Suriya to host Tamil version of kaun banega crorepati". Sify Movies. 22 Dec 2012. Retrieved 23 Dec 2012. 
  44. ^ "Maatraan unit off to Russia". Retrieved 19 November 2011. 
  45. ^ "Hari to retain original cast for 'Singam 2'". CNN-IBN. 30 May 2012. Retrieved 14 June 2012. 
  46. ^ "சரவணா ஸ்டோர்ஸ் சட்டையைத்தான் இனி சூர்யாவும் போடுவாரா?". Archived from the original on 19 June 2010. Retrieved 15 June 2010. 
  47. ^ "Surya New Navaratna Oil Ads". SuriyaOnline.Com. 2 April 2011. Retrieved 3 December 2011. 
  48. ^ "‘close Up’ Suriya – Suriya – Tamil Movie News". 29 April 2011. Retrieved 3 December 2011. 
  49. ^ "Events – Herova? Zerova? Educational Awareness Campaign". IndiaGlitz. 16 May 2008. Retrieved 26 February 2011. 
  50. ^ "Highlights of Suriya-Jyothika wedding". 11 September 2006. Retrieved 22 October 2009. 
  51. ^ Settu Shankar (20 August 2007). "Bright light falls on Surya-Jyothika". One India. Retrieved 22 October 2009. 
  52. ^ "Actor Surya – Actress Jyothika – Newly Born Son – Named As Dev – Baby Boy – Oneindia Entertainment". 22 July 2010. Retrieved 26 February 2011. 

External links[edit]

Category:1975 births Category:Indian actors Category:Indian film actors Category:Tamil actors Category:Indian people Category:Tamil people Category:People from Tamil Nadu Category:Living people Category:Loyola College, Chennai alumni Category:Hindi film actors Category:Tamil film actors Category:People from Chennai Category:Traceurs Category:Tamil Nadu State Film Awards winners Category:Filmfare Awards South winnersfr:Surya Sivakumar id:Surya Sivakumarpl:Surya Sivakumar