Mohanlal


Mohanlal
Mohanlal
Native name മോഹൻലാൽ
Born Mohanlal Vishwanathan Nair
21 May 1960 (1960-05-21) (age 51)[1]
India Elanthoor, Pathanamthitta, Kerala, India
Nationality Indian
Other names Lalettan
Ethnicity Keralite
Citizenship India
Occupation Film actor, Producer, Distributor, Entrepreneur
Years active 1978–present
Height 5 ft 7.75 in (172.09 cm)[2]
Title
Spouse Suchithra (28 Apr 1988 – present)
Children Pranav, Vismaya
Parents Late Vishwanathan Nair
Santhakumari
Relatives

Late K. Balaji (father-in-law)

Suresh Balaji (brother-in-law)[3]
Awards National Film Awards:
Best Actor (1991,1999)
Special Jury Award - Actor (1989)
Kerala State Awards:
Best Actor (1986,1991,1995,1999,2005,2007)
Website
thecompleteactor.com

Mohanlal Vishwanathan Nair (born 21 May 1960),[4] known mononymously as Mohanlal (Malayalam: മോഹൻലാൽ), is a National Award-winning Indian actor, producer, singer and writer who is well known for his versatile and natural acting in Indian cinema. He made his acting debut in the unreleased movie Thiranottam (1978), which was followed by a role as the lead antagonist in his first release Manjil Virinja Pookkal in 1980.

Antagonistic parts in several movies followed before Mohanlal established himself as a lead actor playing a wide variety of character types in comedy and action films amongst others. He was labelled a superstar of Malayalam cinema in 1986 after the success of Rajavinte Makan, in which he played an underworld don. Mohanlal became a film producer with the 1990 musical hit His Highness Abdullah and has also acted in a number of Tamil and Bollywood films. Of these, his notable roles were in Iruvar, directed by Mani Ratnam, and Company, directed by Ram Gopal Varma. As well as being an actor and producer, Mohanlal also owns businesses involved in film distribution, restaurants and packaged spices.

Mohanlal is regarded as one of the finest actors in Indian cinema[5] and is a cultural icon[6] in the Indian state of Kerala, where he was elected its most popular individual in a 2006 online poll conducted by CNN-IBN on the occasion of the 50th anniversary of Kerala's formation.[7] In 2001, the Government of India honoured him with the Padma Shri, India's fourth highest civilian honour, for his contributions to Indian cinema. He has won four Indian National Film Awards — two Best Actor Awards, one Special Jury Award for acting, and one Award for Best Film as producer along with six Kerala State Film Awards for Best Actor. In 2009, he became the first actor to be given the honorary rank of Lieutenant Colonel in the Territorial Army of India[8] and in 2010 received an honorary doctorate from Sree Sankaracharya University of Sanskrit, Kerala.[9]

Contents

Early life

Mohanlal was born in Pathanamthitta district of Kerala, to a Hindu Nair family on 21 May 1960. His mother is Shanthakumari and father is Vishwanathan Nair.[10] He had an elder brother, Pyarelal while his father was a legal secretary in the Kerala government. His family was "close-knit with traditional values" and laid emphasis on education.[11] He was raised in his father's house at Mudavanmugal in Thiruvananthapuram (Trivandrum). Mohanlal studied at the Model School, Thiruvananthapuram, and graduated with a B. Com. from Mahatma Gandhi College in Thiruvananthapuram.

As a student, he acted in plays at school and college[12] and in 1972, was selected as the best actor in his school competing against students from the tenth grade while he was still a sixth grader.[13] While attending college Mohanlal's made his film debut in the comedy Thiranottam.[13] By his own account, while at college he was part of a group passionate about filmmaking and he acted in Thiranottam at their suggestion and would have become a chef if his movie career had not taken off.[14] The film's production company, Bharath CineGroup was owned by his friends[13] who included Maniyan Pilla Raju and Priyadarshan.[15] He started working in the filmfield from September 4, 1978.[16] The film was completed and censored, but was not released.[12] Later it was released in a Kollam theatre with the permission of the President of India. It took more than 25 years to release the movie. By that time, Mohanlal had become a superstar in the Malayalam film industry.[17]

Film career

Early years (1980-1990)

Mohanlal as seen in his blockbuster film, Manjil Virinja Pookkal (1980)

In 1980, Mohanlal was cast in the lead antagonist role in Manjil Virinja Pookkal[13] - the directorial debut of Fazil - produced by Navodaya Appachan. The movie, in which debutants Shankar and Poornima Jayaram played the lead roles, became a major hit and for Mohanlal, "there was no looking back".[18] Mohanlal's friends had sent his application in response to an advertisement by Navodaya Studios.[19] He was auditioned for the role in front of a panel that included well-known directors; two of them gave him poor marks but Fazil and Jijo Appachan liked him.[20] In an interview with Reader's Digest in 2004, Mohanlal said that his looks as a young man might have fit the villain's image.[11] By 1983, Mohanlal was credited in more than 25 feature films[13] most of which had him play negative roles.[11] Mohanlal played his first lead role in an ensemble cast, as a young man in love with a girl whom he mistakenly believes to be rich, in the 1984 comedy Poochakkoru Mookkuthi, also the debut of friend and noted film-maker Priyadarshan .[16] It also marked the beginning of Mohanlal-Priyadarshan duo which later made several successful movies; they have worked together in 29 movies till 2011.[21] In 1985, he recorded a song for the film Onnanam Kunnil.[16] Uyarangalil, Nokketha Doorathu Kannum Nattu, Boeing Boeing and Aram + Aram Kinnaram were some of his successful movies in this period.

Golden period (1986-2000)

The late 1980s and early 1990s are widely regarded as the golden age of Malayalam cinema,[22] with films characterised by detailed screenplays, lucid narration and fresh ideas narrowing the gap between art and commercial films.[23] Mohanlal and Mammootty (who was also an upcoming actor at the time) were very lucky to play very different roles in films "made by the great masters" like G. Aravindan, Hariharan, M. T. Vasudevan Nair, Padmarajan, Bharathan and Lohithadas.[24] Mohanlal, along with the actor and scriptwriter Sreenivasan who played his sidekick in several movies, showcased the angst of unemployed, educated Malayali youth forced to adapt to hostile environments in many realistic social satires,[14] some of which were written by Sreenivasan himself.[25]

1986 was a significant year in Mohanlal's career. He starred in T. P. Balagopalan M.A., directed by Sathyan Anthikad, for which he received his first Kerala State Film Award for Best Actor.[26] He portrayed an unemployed young man who shoulders the responsibility of his family. His performance in Sanmanassullavarkku Samadhanam as a harassed house-owner won him the Filmfare Award for Best Actor (Malayalam) also. Mohanlal was touted as the new Malayalam superstar after the box-office success of Rajavinte Makan in which he played an underworld don[27] He also starred in the tragedy Thalavattom, an uncredited adaptation of One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest, playing Vinod, a young man who becomes mentally ill upon witnessing his girlfriend's death. Mohanlal appeared in 36 movies in 1986.[24]

The following year, Mohanlal starred with Sreenivasan and Shobana in the Sathyan Anthikad black comedy Nadodikkattu, which became a box-office success. Mohanlal and Sreenivasan reprised their roles as the detectives Dasan and Vijayan respectively in the sequels, Pattanapravesham(1988) and Akkare Akkare Akkare(1990). Thoovanathumbikal, directed by Padmarajan, in which he portrayed a person torn between his twin love interests, broke many stereotypes in Indian films,[14][28] such as the leading man falling in love with a second woman immediately after he is rejected by the first. The romantic comedy, Chithram, released in 1988, played for 365 days in a theatre, becoming the longest running Malayalam movie still which plays full shows daily.[29] Mohanlal won a Kerala State Special Jury Award in 1988 for his acting in the movies Padamudra, Aryan, Vellanakalude Nadu, Ulsavapittennu and Chithram.[26]

In 1989, The combination of writer Lohitha Das and director Sibi Malayil is considered to have produced some of his most haunting roles, his role of Sethu Madhavan, who dreams of becoming a police officer but ends up as a criminal, in the tragedy Kireedam, earned him a National Film Special Jury Award.[16] Mohanlal later recalled that his portrayal of Sethumadhavan's mental agony, commended as a natural performance, was spontaneous and that he "did what Sethumadhavan, my character, would have done in such a situation", adding that acting was "akin to entering another person’s body."[24]

In 1989, he acted in a movie which became a hit in the year, Varavelpu, which tells the story of a man who earned money in overseas and came back to his native to enjoy his life with family. He bought a bus, which changed his life fully. The former Prime Minister of India, Atal Bihari Vajpayee, mentioned the movie as an example for ignorance by Kerala towards global economic changes during the inauguration of Global Investor Meet held at Kochi on 18 January 2003.[30][31] of

In the early 1990s, Mohanlal acted in a number of notable commercial movies, such as His Highness Abdullah, Midhunam and No.20 Madras Mail. His Highness Abdullah was the first movie produced by Mohanlal, under the banner of Pranavam Arts. His romantic comedy Kilukkam (1991) with Revathy is regarded as one of the most popular Malayalam films ever.[6] His role in Bharatham as a Carnatic singer who is burdened by a jealous brother, earned him the National Award for Best Actor in 1991.[13] Although not trained in classical dance, he portrayed a Bharatanatyam dancer in Kamaladalam(1992). He took help from his choreographer and his co-actors Vineeth and Monisha for enacting the dance scenes.[24] Rajashilpi, Sadayam, Yoddha and Vietnam Colony were the other successful movies of Mohanlal in the same year. The 1993 drama Devaasuram, written by Ranjith and directed by I. V. Sasi, was one of Mohanlal's most successful films and is regarded as a cult classic.[13] In 1994, Mohanlal starred along with Shobana and Suresh Gopi in Fazil's Manichitrathazhu in the lead role as a psychiatrist. The film was a critical and commercial success, and became one of the highest grossing Malayalam films. Sphadikam was his major commercial success in 1995. Mohanlal won his third Kerala State Film Award for Best Actor and fifth Filmfare Award for Best Actor (Malayalam) for his portrayal as a young man who becomes a thug, estranged from his father, upon failing to meet the latter's high expectations.

Priyadarshan's Kaalapani, an epic film about the prisoners in Cellular Jail of Port Blair and Lohithadas's Kanmadam (1998) are among the notable commercial successes in the second half of the decade. Mohanlal's first non-Malayalam movie was the Tamil biopic Iruvar directed by Mani Ratnam in which he starred opposite debutant Aishwarya Rai.[32] The controversial film,[33][34] in which Mohanlal depicted an actor who turns politician (based on M. G. Ramachandran), was a critical success and won many awards including Best Film award at the Belgrade International Film Festival and two National Film Awards.[35]

In 1997, he acted in a movie Guru, which became the only film in Mollywood which is selected in the List of Indian submissions for the Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film. Here he plays the role as Raghuraman, who wanted to kill all the people because he lost his relatives, love and parents during a bombblast. But he got deviate during a dream which took him to a world without eyes, there he found the reason behind it and gave the solutions too.

In 1998, he produced and starred in Harikrishnans alongside Mammootty and Juhi Chawla. The film was a commercial success but was not received well by critics.[36] The movie had two versions of climaxes which were screened in different regions based on whether Mammootty or Mohanlal was more popular there.[37] This, however, became controversial when lawsuits were filed claiming that prints exhibited in Hindu-dominated areas showed Mohanlal marrying the heroine, whereas the ones in Muslim-dominated areas showed Mammootty marrying her.[38]

Mohanlal depicted a Kathakali artist whose personal life is a tragedy in the 1999 Indo-French period drama Vanaprastham directed by Shaji N. Karun. Since Mohanlal was not trained in Kathakali - a dance-drama form indigenous to Kerala, he took tips from reputed Kathakali dancers to essay the role, for which he received his second National Film Award for Best Actor,[39] fourth Kerala State Film Award for Best Actor and sixth Filmfare Award for Best Actor (Malayalam).[11] It was also adjudged the best feature film of the year and won the best editing award at National Film Awards. The film was also selected for the competitive section at the Cannes Film Festival and several other international film festivals and won six Kerala State Film Awards.[1][40][41]

Later years (2000-2010)

Many movies made in this period built on Mohanlal's image as an invincible, larger-than-life hero. In 2000, Mohanlal starred in Narasimham playing a rogue with a good heart.[42] It became one of the highest grossing movies in the history of Malayalam cinema.[43] In the next two years, Mohanlal was typecasted in similar larger-than-life action hero roles in movies like Ravanaprabhu, Thandavam, Praja, Onnaman and Chathurangam. These movies were widely criticised for their repetitive plots, lewd dialogues, punch lines and male chauvinistic outlook.[43][44][45][46][47] "The Narasimham hangover is terrifically strong and it has, at least for the moment, killed the prospects of good films. I don't see any other reason for the failure of well made female-oriented films like Mazha and Madhuranombarakkattu," wrote The New Indian Express.[43] The director Priyadarshan commented, "Mohanlal is the complete actor who can excel in both action and comedy. But it is a pity that the actor fell into an image trap after "Narasimham", when he became the one-man entertainer who could dance, fight, and sing!"[48] Mohanlal has defended the poor performance of his movies saying that a "movie is a joint effort" where the actor "is just a vehicle to convey what comes as a thought to the writer" and the number of "great story tellers.. have dwindled" in Malayalam cinema.[18]

In 2002, Mohanlal played the role of Sreenivasan IPS, a Mumbai police officer,[11] in his first Bollywood movie, Company, which introduced him to the Hindi-speaking audience in India and for which he won the IIFA Star Screen Award for Best Supporting Actor.[49][50] The movie dealt with the real life story of two underworld dons who ruled Mumbai played by Ajay Devgan and Vivek Oberoi. Mohanlal's performance was well-received. The Hindu noted that the actor is "at his natural best" and "does not look stifled or anxious as other South Indian stars do when they appear in a Hindi movie for the first time".[51]

The following year, Mohanlal, trying to change his action hero image,[52] returned to humour roles with Kilichundan Mampazham, Balettan, Hariharan Pilla Happiyanu and Mr. Brahmachari. Kilichundan Mampazham, promoted as a comeback vehicle for the actor, received good reviews and box-office collection.[53][54][55] Balettan, directed by V. M. Vinu, was an "average story" which had "nothing new to offer",[56][57] but was a commercial success.[58] Mohanlal plays the role of Athanipparambil Balachandran, a bank employee always willing to lend a helping hand, who is forced to hide many secrets after his father's death leading to his family's mistrust.[56] In 2004, Natturajavu and Mambazhakkalam were his notable commercial successes.[59]

Still fighting the larger-than-life image, Mohanlal appeared in the 2005 black comedy Udayananu Tharam as an aspiring film director. Well-received by the audience and the critics, the movie did well even in places where Malayalam films do not run in regular shows like Vadodara, Rajkot, Pune and Ahmedabad.[25] In the same year, he appeared in director Blessy's second film Thanmathra, a film that tells the story of an individual suffering from Alzheimer's disease. The film received positive reviews and Mohanlal's performance was praised.[60] Mohanlal won his fifth Kerala State Film Award for Best Actor and seventh Filmfare Award for Best Actor (Malayalam) for his performance in a difficult role; his character does not speak in the second-half of the movie.[61] An "aesthetically shot" scene in which the husband, a dark shot of Mohanlal in nude, is distracted by a lizard on the wall while having sex with his wife was deleted after it became controversial in the conservative Kerala society.[60][62]

In 2006, he worked with the director Sathyan Anthikkad, after nearly a decade, in the movie Rasathanthram. Although a commercial success,[63] the movie received mixed reviews.[64] Rediff.com enjoyed the movie, though it used "different elements that are tried and tested over the ages" and commented that "Mohanlal, though repeating himself for the umpteenth time, pleases."[65] Mohanlal also acted in Kirtichakra by director Major Ravi, in which he plays the role of an Indian Army officer Major Mahadevan. The movie was shot in Kashmir.[66] and was a commercial success.[67] A dubbed version of the movie was released in Tamil as Aran, but Mohanlal disassociated himself with the movie since his voice was not used, stating that "I prefer to speak for my role in the film."[68] Mohanlal also acted in the sequels Kurukshetra (2008) and Kandahar (2010).

In 2007, Mohanlal won the Kerala State Film Award for Best Actor for his performance in the movie Paradesi directed by P.T. Kunju Muhammed. The movie garnered positive reviews,[69] with Sify.com noting that "Mohanlal is mesmerising and reinvents the idiom of acting once more with feeling."[70] The same year, he appeared in his second Bollywood movie, Ram Gopal Varma Ki Aag, and in Hallo, which became one of the biggest Malayalam hits in 2007.[71] In Ram Gopal Varma Ki Aag, a remake of Sholay, Mohanlal played the role of the protagonist Narasimha, a cop with a vendetta against the criminal Babban Singh played by Amitabh Bachchan. The movie received extremely poor reviews and Mohanlal's performance was also criticized.[72][73] Rediff.com commented that the actor, forced to speak "farcical, formulaic tripe", "gave up the chase for greatness halfway through".[74]

In 2009, Mohanlal appeared with Kamal Haasan in the Tamil movie Unnaipol Oruvan. His last film in 2009 was Evidam Swargamanu, directed by Roshan Andrews.

2010-present

His 2010 releases, Alexander the Great, and Kandahar, did not fare well at the box office. Shikkar is the only movie he has in 2010 as a commercial success film and also it is the only solo mega hit of a Malayalam actor in 2010.[75] Malayala Manorama criticized his choice of roles commenting that Malayalees did not want to see another "The “I Am Still Superman” Mohanlal Movie" in 2011 and that the actor should "either shape up for the roles he is trying to play or stick to roles that suit him".[75] His first release of 2011 was the multi-starrer Christian Brothers is the highest grossing malayalam film ever collecting more than 38 crores, released on 18 March 2011 in which he acted alongside Suresh Gopi, Dileep and Sarath Kumar. His second release China Town was also a mega hit. His latest release is Pranayam, a multi-starrer featuring Jaya Prada and Anupam Kher, which released on 31 August 2011. His performance in Pranayam has been applauded by the critics and the viewers.Snehaveedu Is the Latest superhit of Mohanlal.This movie is a family subject directed by Sathyan Anthikkadu.

Filmography

Mohanlal has acted in over 300 Malayalam films and produced or co-produced over 25 films. His acting credits include some Tamil, Hindi, Telugu, Kannada films. He has acted in 4 professional plays. He has sung over 25 songs, most of them for the films he acted in.

Other projects

Theatre and television

Like most other Indian stars, Mohanlal does not have a theatre background. However, he has acted in a few plays. He debuted on the stage as Karna (a character in the Indian epic Mahabharata) in Karnabharam, a Sanskrit play that was premiered in New Delhi as part of the National Theatre Festival directed by Kavalam Narayana Panicker. The play depicts Karna's mental agony a day before the Kurukshetra War, as he thinks about his past and his faith.[76] He received a standing ovation each time the play was staged.[11]

Kadhayattam was a presentation enacted by Mohanlal, depicting 10 unforgettable characters and situations selected from Malayalam literature.[11] He has said that it is his offering to his mother tongue. The play was staged at Kottayam on 1 November 2003.[77] The presentation was a fusion of stage acting, movie expression, sound and lighting techniques and music, conceived by film director T. K. Rajeev Kumar.[78] Chayamukhi is Mohanlal's latest play, presented under the banner of Kalidasa Visual Magic, a production house promoted jointly by Mohanlal and Malayalam actor Mukesh. Mohanlal performed the role of Bheeman and Mukesh performed the role of Keechakan. The play was first staged at Thrichur on 12 March 2008.[79] Mohanlal has also appeared in several television commercials and advertisemens including Malabar Gold ad with Hema Malini and Sania Mirza, MCR ad with Sarath Kumar, Oceanus ad, Manappuram Gold Loan ad with Akshay Kumar, etc.[80]

As Ambassador

Mohanlal was selected as the Goodwill Ambassador of Kerala State Athletics by the Kerala State Athletics Association.[81] He is also the Goodwill Ambassador of AIDS awareness campaign by Kerala AIDS Control Society for which he acted in short films,[82] and of Handloom textiles in Kerala.[83] Other commercials, designed for Kerala markets, include LG,[84] Nerolac, Malabar Gold, Original Choice Rum, Manappuram Finance, MCR textiles, Oceanus constructions, Mohanlal's Tastebuds, Vismayas Max animation academy, Hedge Equities and Pankaja Kasthuri[85]

Business ventures

Mohanlal has also started several business ventures related to film production and distribution, restaurants and packaged spices among others. He owns Maxlab Cinemas and Entertainments, a Malayalam film distribution company and Vismayas Max, a film post-production studio and college for dubbing artists at Kinfra Film and Video Park, Trivandrum. He has produced films under the banner Pranavam Arts. He owns many restaurants including a chain in Dubai called Mohanlal's Tastebuds,[86] Travancore Court in Kochi and The Harbour Market in Bangalore.[87] He is also a partner in Mohanlal's Tastebuds, a pickle and curry powder company.[88] His other business ventures include Uni Royal Marine Exports - a Kozhikode-based seafood export company and Jose Thomas Performing Arts Centre Kochi.[89] He is an independent director of Clenergen India Private Limited[90] In 2009, Mohanlal, along with Priyadarshan, tried to bid for an Indian Premier League cricket team based in Kochi;[91] they withdrew the bid on failing to source enough funds after a change in rules was introduced.[92]

In the media

Mohanlal has been described in Indian media as one of the versatile actors and has been lauded for his natural acting style.[13][61][74][93][94] Reader's Digest India described him in 2004 as "cinema's jack of all trades and master of many".[11] He was also listed 80th in India's Most Trusted Survey conducted by Reader's Digest in 2010.[95] Bollywood director Ram Gopal Varma has described Mohanlal as "one of the finest actors in the country who can slip into any role easily".[96]

In 2003 on the 25th anniversary of Mohanlal's film career, a week-long celebration and a stage show was held in Thiruvananthapuram by his fans and friends. The proceeds from the stage show was donated to charity.[97] Malayalam television channels, Asianet Television and Surya TV also held separate stage shows to celebrate the anniversary.[98]

Mohanlal along with Mammootty, Dileep and Suresh Gopi have been accused in the media for causing a crisis in Malayalam cinema due to the "superstar" effect. In 2005 Mohanlal, Mammootty and Dileep controlled 95% of the box-office revenue of Malayalam cinema. The "superstars" have been criticized for their high remunerations, preference for formulaic content and larger-than-life male-oriented roles.[99][100] Mohanlal fan clubs are present throughout Kerala; they help in creating a buzz around new releases and ensure a good opening in movie screens, a crucial factor in the success of the film.[101] In 2007, prohibition activists in Kerala protested against Mohanlal for appearing in a surreptitious whiskey advertisement. Mahatma Gandhi National Foundation,a Kottayam-based NGO, accused the actor of violating laws that ban direct liquor advertisements.[102] However, Mohanlal stated that it was unfair to single him out when so many other Indian actors were doing similar endorsements on television.

In 2010 Mohanlal was part of a public spat involving Malayalam writer and social-critic Sukumar Azhikode, actor Thilakan and Association of Malayalam Movie Artistes (AMMA). The controversy erupted after Azhikode supported Thilakan's accusations that AMMA had imposed an 'undeclared ban' on him,[103] suggesting that the leading stars of Malayalam should step aside since they are old, out-of-shape[104] and charged exorbitant remunerations resulting in mounting losses for the industry. He added that Mohanlal was "a hypocrite who hid his advancing age to act with younger heroines".[80] Mohanlal responded that Azhikode was having "hallucinations" and his remarks were "an aged-uncle's joke". This led to further personal remarks[5] by Azhikode against Mohanlal. Other actors like Mammootty and Innocent defended Mohanlal and the media was, in general, critical of the comments by Azhikode.[105][106] Azhikode filed a defamation suit against Mohanlal in August 2010.[107]

Personal life

Mohanlal lives with his family in Thevara, Kochi. He married Suchitra, daughter of Tamil film producer K. Balaji[108] on 28 April 1988.[10] Mohanlal later recalled in an interview that Suchitra used to send him cards because she wanted to marry him. Their horoscopes did not match at first, but later it was found that the astrologer erred. Mohanlal has two children - Pranav and Vismaya. Pranav has acted in a few movies, debuting in Mohanlal's film Onnaman.[109] Mohanlal did not object when his son expressed a desire to act as "Kids may have many such ambitions. If we can help them realise something, what is the problem?"[109] He owns a house at Ooty,[110] a villa in Arabian Ranches and a flat in Burj Khalifa at Dubai.[111]

Mohanlal is a self-described foodie.[11][112] He also enjoys melodious music. Mohanlal is a strong believer in destiny and spirituality. He likes to read Osho, J. Krishnamurti, Aurobindo and Ramana Maharshi.[18] He has often stated that the turn of events in his life, including his film career, was accidental.[61]

In 2008, while shooting for the movie Kurukshetra in which he plays the role of an Army officer, Mohanlal expressed interest to join Territorial Army of India as an officer.[113] On July 9, 2008, he was formally inducted to the Territorial Army in the rank of Lieutenant Colonel by Army Chief Deepak Kapoor. Rules had to be amended to accommodate him as men above the age of 42 are not eligible to join the volunteer force.[114][115]

Mohanlal was awarded an honorary doctorate by Sree Sankaracharya University of Sanskrit, Kalady in 2010. The citation praised Mohanlal as "an excellent performer after actor Sathyan in Malayalam film world, who essayed a rich variety of roles with equal ease and poise."[116]

As Magician

In 2008, Mohanlal underwent 18 months of magician training under Gopinath Muthukad. He had planned to perform a stunt called Burning Illusion in Thiruvananthapuram, however this was cancelled later on allegations that it is a dangerous act.[117]

Awards and achievements

References

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Mohanlal's career graph on a decline THE WEEK magazine story

http://week.manoramaonline.com/cgi-bin/MMOnline.dll/portal/ep/theWeekContent.do?sectionName=Entertainment&contentId=9946356&programId=1073754907&pageTypeId=1073754893&contentType=EDITORIAL&BV_ID=@ national award winning two times.

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