Superstar Rajinikanth turns 70 today.
Born in 1950 in Karnataka in a Marathi family as Shivaji Rao Gaekwad, he earlier served as a bus conductor in Bangalore.
The evergreen actor was introduced to the Tamil film industry by director K Balachander in the movie Apoorva Raagangal in 1975 that starred Kamal Haasan in the lead.
In the last 45 years, Rajini has played a variety of roles — from villain and antihero to action star, blockbuster supernova and even a robot.
He left an impression on the audience with every outing, cementing his position in their hearts as Thalaiva.
Fans eagerly look forward to his films once they are announced and ensure it turns out to be a blockbuster. Fans literally worship him and have even built a temple for him in Tamil Nadu.
However, his work isn’t limited to the Tamil film industry. He showed his acting prowess in other languages too, including Hindi, Kannada, Telugu, Malayalam and Bengali.
The government of India honoured him with the Padma Bhushan in 2000 and the Padma Vibhushan in 2016.
On the occasion of his 70th birthday today, AR Rahman, 70 other celebrities and Thalaiva fans unveiled the common birthday display picture.
The Oscar-winning music composer tweeted the picture, which showed Rajini’s five movie avatars.
It also focused on the superstar’s next step in life — entering politics.
Only recently, the superstar put speculations regarding his political entry to rest by announcing he will be launching his own political party in January 2021.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi also wished him on his birthday, by tweeting: “Dear @rajinikanth Ji, wishing you a Happy Birthday! May you lead a long and healthy life.”
Reportedly, the first look of his next film Annaatthee will also be revealed on the occasion. His 90s co-stars Meena and Khushbu are expected to play his maternal cousins in the movie.