How Santhanam Took The Mantle As Star Comedian In Tamil Cinema


Haven’t we all been there? Sitting in the theatre and laughing away to glory while Santhanam laces the scene with his terrific one-liners.

The comedian has seen his star rise and how! From being a simple side actor who would butt in with a couple of jokes here and there, now he shares the screen with some of the biggest actors in the industry and even manages to steal their thunder in some scenes.

From sidekick to ally:


For those who have been following Tamil cinema closely over the years, most of the comedians who appear on screen basically have their own comedy track.

This means that their stories run parallel to the movie and they generally have little relation to the main storyline. However, Santhanam managed to change that stereotype by actively taking part in the story by playing the hero’s best friend. The best examples of this are in movies such as Siva Manasula Shakthi and Boss Engira Bhaskaran, which are considered two of his finest movies in terms of the quality of comedy portrayed.

Best roles:

Santhanam has played a multitude of roles in Tamil cinema to be recognized. However, there are a few roles that have made him stand out. Here are three of them:

  1. Kalakalappu:


One of the most underrated comedy movies of our times, Kalakalappu sees Santhanam play the role of a local vadhyar or landlord in a village. His comic timing and one-liners in the movie are absolutely top draw and he nails it in almost every scene. The creative extent of the role is brilliant and there is not one scene in the movie featuring Santhanam where the audience can suppress a smile. Probably his best role till date.

  1. Boss Engira Bhaskaran:

Boss Engira Bhaskaran

The movie that redefined comedy and took it to its simplest form – friendship. When Arya and Santhanam are together, the camaraderie is surely something to look forward to, as seen in other movies such as Raja Rani also. But in BEB, Santhanam absolutely owns the role of Arya’s best friend – The barber. He takes a loan and opens a risky tuition centre business and his expressions coupled with his trademark one-liners were one of the highest points in the movie.

  1. Siva Manasula Shakthi:

Siva Manasula Shakthi

Another movie that sees him play the hero’s best friend, SMS saw Santhanam paired opposite Jeeva as his best friend. The running track that sees him lose his mobile phone almost every time he is around Jeeva is hilarious and their friendship track is another facet that made the movie a hit. Surely, a must watch for those who love light-hearted comedy at its best.