Was given his debut by Bharathiraja in Alaigal Oivathillai (1981). A four time winner of the Filmfare Award for Best Actor - Tamil and once Best Actor - Telugu. He won both awards in 1988. Won the Tamil Nadu State Special Prize for Best Actor for Agni Natchathira (1988). Was awarded the Nandi Special Jury Award for Abhinandana (1988). Left All India Forward Bloc in 2009 to form his own party Ahila India Naadalum Makkal Katchi. Is married to sisters Ragini and Rathi.