Popular Malayalam actor and folk singer Kalabhavan Mani passed away at a hospital in Kochi on Sunday (March 6). He was 45.
Kalabhavan Mani died in Kochi on Sunday evening. He had been hospitalised for liver ailment.
Mani had bagged national special jury award in 2000 for his performance in Malayalam film Vasanthiyum Lakshmiyum Pinne Njaanum.
Mani, who hailed from an economically backward family at Chalakkudy in Thrissur district, started his career as mimicry artiste at Kalabhavan in Kochi and then did comedy roles in Malayalam films. He was known for inimitable mannerisms as comedy artiste. Later, he donned lead roles in several movies and performed as a playback singer. He had acted in 200-odd Malayalam films.
Over the next couple of decades, Mani went on to establish himself as one of the more popular actors in Malayalam cinema. Comedy was his forte, but he proved that he was not just a comedian.
With his superb portrayal of a blind singer in Vasanthiyum Lakshmiyum Pinne Njanum, (remade in Tamil as Kasi), he was a favourite to win both the State and national awards for the best actor.
He also made an excellent villain, in films such as Gemini (Tamil). He was a good singer and the folk songs he rendered were extremely popular. His untimely death has dealt another blow to Malayalam cinema in 2016, which recently lost actor Kalpana, lyricist O.N.V. Kurup, directors Rajesh Pillai and Mohan Roop, cinematographer Anandakuttan, composer Rajamani and musician Shan Johnson.