Surendranatha Thilakan known mononymously as Thilakan, was an Indian film and stage actor who had starred in over 200 Malayalam films in a career spanning over four decades (1972-2012). Thilakan is regarded as one of the finest actors in Indian cinema, and popularly mentioned as the Perumthachan (master craftsman) of Malayalam Cinema. He is known for his excellence in character, antagonist, and protagonist roles. He has won 3 National Film Awards and 9 Kerala State Film Awards. The Government of India awarded him with the Padma Shri in 2009 for his contributions towards the arts.