Vishal Krishna (born 29 August 1977) is an Indian film actor, producer and anti-piracy activist who works in the Tamil film industry. The younger son of film producer G. K. Reddy, Vishal studied Visual Communications at loyal College, Chennai]]. Known for his action roles, produces films under his production company, Vishal Film Factory.
He made an entrance into the film industry as an assistant director for Arjun. He then became an actor and played his first lead role in the romantic thriller Chellamae (2004), before going on to star in the commercially successful action films Sandakozhi, Thimiru, Thaamirabharani and Malaikottai. Following a series of unsuccessful films at the box office, Vishal chose to create his own production studio and has since produced and worked on profitable ventures such as Pandiya Naadu (2013) and Naan Sigappu Manithan (2014).
Vishal was elected as the General Secretary of the Nadigar Sangam in October 2015 after initiating a movement against the previous committee. He was expelled from Tamil Film Producers' Council (TFPC) for remarks against the council. Later in April 2017, he won the election and got elected as President of Tamil Film Producers Council.
Vishal Krishna was born to G. K. Reddy and Janaki Devi on 29 August 1977. He was born in Chennai. His father was a film producer for Telugu and Tamil films and his family settled in Chennai. His elder brother Vikram Krishna has produced several of Vishal's films and had previously appeared as an actor in films under the screen name of Ajay. Vishal also has a younger sister Aishwarya. Vishal obtained his secondary education from Don Bosco Matriculation Higher Secondary School before securing a degree in visual communications from Loyola College, Chennai.
Vishal assisted actor-director Arjun Sarja in his venture Vedham (2001), and a producer spotted Vishal on the sets of the film and signed him to appear in an acting role in Gandhi Krishna's Chellamae (2004). Accepting the role, Vishal prepared by joining Koothu-P-Pattarai to hone his acting skills and played the protagonist role of Raghunandan, whose wife is kidnapped by her childhood friend. A critic described his performance is "apt" but "there was plenty left to hone". His next film was Sandakozhi (2005) with N. Linguswamy, who had previously worked with his father's production house as an assistant director. Vishal was described to have "improved from his Chellamae days" and "clicked as an action hero". Film journalists stated that he was "the fastest rising action hero" of the time. After a cameo as himself in Sasi's Dishyum (2006), he went on to appear in Tarun Gopi's action film Thimiru (2006). The film opened to mixed reviews with Vishal being praised for his intense performance with a critic calling his performance "the film's only strength and, to an extent, making up for the weak script and poor characterisation". The film became Vishal's third consecutive commercial success, and he began to emerge in Tamil films.
His next film, the political action drama Sivappathigaram (2006), directed by Karu Pazhaniappan was a failure financially despite favourable reviews. His next film was released in January 2007, Hari's multi-starring family action drama Thaamirabharani (2007) and the film went on to gain considerable box office success, carrying good reports amidst other big budget releases. Later in the year, he appeared in Boopathy Pandian's Malaikottai (2007), a comedy entertainer. In his first full-length comic role, Vishal received mixed feedback for his portrayal from critics, with Rediff stating that he is "a far cry from the rather endearing young man in Sandakozhi", whilst describing his performance as "cringe-able". Behindwoods stated it as an "Average masala-mix entertainer". The film took a large opening and was declared a blockbuster, featuring in the top 10 at behindwoods box office. In the year 2008, for the first time, Vishal portrayed a police officer in Sathyam, which became a commercial failure at the box office. Then both his films Thoranai (2009) and Theeradha Vilaiyattu Pillai (2010) were just average grossers.
Vishal was then given the opportunity to feature in Bala's dark comedy Avan Ivan (2011), after being recommended to the director by his friend Arya. Portraying a village stage actor with a squint, Vishal had severe eye pain and headaches, and he also had a serious muscular injury on sets. The film opened to mixed reviews, though Vishal's performance won positive reviews. Indiaglitz stated that Vishal delivered an "award winning performance" and that his "mannerisms and body language give you goosebumps". The reviewer further cited that "Vishal's spontaneous response to his mentor's death in the movie is touching. His demonstration of Navarasas in front of actor Suriya will melt you in tears". Vishal played the role of a police officer in his following release Vedi (2011), directed by Prabhu Deva, which was declared an instant flop at the box office. In the 2013 film Samar, Vishal played a forest trek guide. Behindwoods stated that he "rocks in the action sequences". He appeared in three more films that year.
Following a cameo role in Theeya Velai Seiyyanum Kumaru, he starred in the action films Pattathu Yaanai and Pandiya Naadu. The latter was Vishal's debut production venture. Vishal opted to produce and collaborate with Thiru for a third venture Naan Sigappu Manithan (2014), a revenge drama, in which his character had narcolepsy. To prepare for the lead role, Vishal read up and studied real life case studies of people with the disorder, citing that there were no references from cinema which he could watch and learn. Then he had acted under director Hari for the second time in Poojai (2014), which did somewhat good business at the box office. In 2015, he acted two films, namely, Aambala is a hit. Paayum Puli, turned out to be flop at the box office.
In 2016, he did three movies; Kathakali, Marudhu and Kaththi Sandai. The first two were average grossers, while Kaththi Sandai became a flop at the box office. In January 2017, Vishal signed his debut Malayalam film, as the main antagonist in the Mohanlal-starer Villain, directed by B. Unnikrishnan.. In September 2017, Vishal played a detective in Thupparivaalan directed by Mysskin which was loosely based on the British writer Arthur Conan Doyle's detective character, Sherlock Holmes. The film was a commercial success and was appreciated by audiences and critics. In 2018, Vishal had two major releases. The first one was Irumbu Thirai directed by newcomer P.S. Mithran which released in May 2018 And second was Sandakozhi 2 released on October 2018 was written and directed by N. Linguswamy. A sequel to the successful Sandakozhi (2005), the film features Vishal in his 25th film. The film turned out to be an average grosser
Tamil Film Producers Council (2017-present)
He was elected as President of Tamil Film Producers Council election, which was held on 2 April 2017.. Apart from this, Vishal is also a staunch advocate against online piracy since 2014, having started an anti-piracy cell.
Vishal filed his nomination as an independent candidate for the by-poll to the high-profile RK Nagar constituency in Chennai, which fell vacant following Jayalalithaa's death in December 2017 . It has caught major political parties and Kollywood by surprise, as Vishal rushed into politics where superstar Rajinikanth and Kamal Haasan were still waiting to tread. But to his dismay, Vishal's nomination for Chennai's RK Nagar by-election was rejected .
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