Gautham Vasudev Menon is an Indian Film Director, Screenwriter, and Producer who works Simultaneously in Tamil and Telugu cinema. He has also remade his Films in Hindi. Many of his films have been critically acclaimed, most notably his semi-autobiographical films ‘Vaaranam Aayiram’ (Suriya Sun Of Krishna) and ‘Vinnaithaandi Varuvaayaa’ (Ye Maya Chesave) and his thrillers ‘Kaakha Kaakha’ (Gharshana), ‘Vettaiyaadu Vilaiyaadu’ (Raghavan), Yennai Arindhaal (Yenthavadu Gani) and Achcham ‘Yenbadhu Madamaiyada’ (Sahasam Swasaga Sagipo).
Menon was born to a Malayali father and a Tamil mother on 25 February 1973 in Ottapalam, a town in the Palakkad district of Kerala. Although born in Kerala he grew up in Trichy, Tamil Nadu. He graduated with a bachelor’s in Mechanical Engineering from Mookambigai College of Engineering, Pudukkottai.
Vaaranam Aayiram won the National Film Award for Best Feature Film in Tamil. Menon produces films through his London Stock Exchange-listed Photon Kathaas film production company and his production Thanga Meengal (2013) won the National Film Award for Best Feature Film in Tamil.
Menon was a student of Mechanical Engineering at Mookambigai College of Engineering, Trichy in the batch of 1993, and his time there inspired to make his lead characters of Minnale, Vaaranam Aayiram and Vinnaithaandi Varuvaayaa, students of the same course. He claims to have been inspired by films such as Dead Poets Society and Nayagan and expressed his desire to his parents to change career path and become a filmmaker and consequently wrote his first film at his college hostel. His mother insisted he became an ad film maker by shooting various commercials and took an apprenticeship under filmmaker Rajiv Menon. He went on to work as an assistant director for Minsara Kanavu in 1997, in which he also appeared in a cameo role.
His first film was ‘Minnale’ in Tamil with R. Madhavan, Abbas and Reema Sen playing the lead roles. The film was a huge hit because of its young and peppy story, brilliant comic timing from the acclaimed comedian Vivek and also because of some new lilting music from debutante music director, Harris Jeyaraj.
Gautham immediately received the chance to Remake the film in Bollywood. He did so, retaining Madhavan as in the lead role, this time having Diya Mirza playing the female lead role. ‘Rehna Hai Tere Dil Mein’ however did not have much success in the Hindi film industry.
Gautham returned to Tamil cinema in 2003 with ‘Kaaka Kaaka’, starring Surya Sivakumar, Jyothika Saravanan and Jeevan. Gautham, himself, appeared in a cameo role as a senior police officer. With R. D. Rajashekar on the camera, Anthony in editing and again with Harris Jeyaraj handling the music, the film was a box-office record breaker.
Gautham again got offers from various quarters to remake the film. This time he remade the film in Telugu with Venkatesh in the lead. But the facts reveal that some of the scenes were as is replicated from the English movie Se7en.
After that, Gautham had the opportunity to make another action/adventure thriller film with Kamal Hassan in a pivotal role. Thus, he started ‘Vettaiyadu Villaiyadu’. The unit faced a lot of problems due to the producer’s suicide attempt. However they overcame all that and the film was released in August 2006. The director plays a cameo dancing at the back in the song, Manjal Veiyil. The film came to be the biggest grosser of 2006.
Gautham’s ‘Pachaikili Muthucharam’ with Sarath Kumar and Jyothika Saravanan in 2007 was a critical acclaim but bombed at the box office. His next release, ‘Vaaranam Aayiram’ with Surya Sivakumar, Simran Bagga, Sameera Reddy and Divya got released on November 14, 2008.It is claimed as biggest hit of 2008. It has received the National Film Award for Best Feature Film in Tamil for 2008.
His next directorial ventures was ‘Chennaiyil Oru Mazhaikalam’ with Trisha, Satish along with newcomers, and ‘Vinnai Thaandi Varuvaaya'(Ye Maya Chesave) again with Trisha along with Silambarasan.
then he went on to make ‘Neethaane En Ponvasantham’ (Yeto vellipoindi Manasau) which was a Huge hit in 2012. which he remade in hindi Again.
in 2015 gautham menon had another Police movie named ‘Yennai Arindhal’ (Yenthavadu Gaani) which was blockbuster hit in both Telugu and Tamil.
his long awaited project ‘Achcham Enbadhu Madamaiyada’ (Sahasam Swasaga Sagipo) Released in 2016 which was Action Love Drama.
Currently Gautham Vasudev Menon is working on two projects Dhanush’s ‘Enai Noki Paayum Thota’ and his long awaited Dream ‘Project Dhruva Natchathiram’ with Vikram.