|Vivek Agnihotri Quick Info|
|Height||5 ft 8 in|
|Date of Birth||November 10, 1973|
Vivek Agnihotri is an Indian film director, screenwriter, producer, and author who has directed films such as Chocolate (2005), Dhan Dhana Dhan Goal (2007), Hate Story (2012), Junooniyat (2016), Buddha in a Traffic Jam (2016), TheTashkent Files (2019), and The Kashmir Files (2022). He had also produced the last 3 of those films. Other than Dhan Dhana Dhan Goal (2007) and Hate Story (2012), he has written the screenplay for all of the films that he has directed. He has served as the secretary of the Indian Film Director’s Association and the Screenwriters Association of India. At the 67th National Film Awards, presented in October 2021, he won the ‘Best Screenplay – Dialogues’ award for his work in The Tashkent Files (2019). The film, a critical work of national and historical importance, has been included as a case study in the official curricula of renowned institutions such as the Indian Institute of Management – Ahmedabad and the University of Mumbai. In 2020, Vivek published a follow-up book titled Who Killed Shastri?: The Tashkent Files. He is also a passionate public speaker with a focus on themes such as Indic civilization and creative consciousness.
Vivek Ranjan Agnihotri
VRA, The Thriller King
Tilhar, Shahjahanpur, Uttar Pradesh, India
Mumbai, Maharashtra, India
Vivek had completed his graduation in science. He had then attained a post-graduation degree in Planning (Economics) from The Bhopal School of Social Sciences in Bhopal, Madhya Pradesh, India.
Thereafter, he studied advertising at the Indian Institute of Mass Communication, a media center of learning and civil service training institute for the Indian Information Service Cadre funded and promoted by the Government of India, in New Delhi.
He then pursued the ‘Organisation & Management’ course (CSS-Certificate of Special Studies) at the Harvard Extension School, the extension school of Harvard University, a private Ivy League research university in Cambridge, Massachusetts.
Film Director, Screenwriter, Producer, Author
- Father – Dr. Prabhu Dayal Agnihotri (Educationist, Writer, Sanskrit Scholar)
- Mother – Sharda Agnihotri
- Siblings – Muniya Agnihotri (Sister)
- Others – Sushma Joshi (Mother-in-Law), Madhusudan Joshi (Father-in-Law), Alankar Joshi (Brother-in-Law) (Actor), Anuja Joshi (Niece-in-Law) (Actress), Anisha Joshi (Niece-in-Law), Padmashree Joshi (Sister-in-Law) (Actress), Vijay Kadam (Brother-in-Law) (Actor)
5 ft 8 in or 173 cm
77 kg or 170 lbs
Girlfriend / Spouse
Vivek has dated –
- Pallavi Joshi (1997–Present) – Vivek got married to Indian actress, writer, and film producer Pallavi Joshi in 1997. They have 2 children together – a son named Manan Agnihotri and a daughter named Mallika Agnihotri. Vivek and Pallavi are the co-founders of an NGO called I am Buddha Foundation (IABF). IABF mentors and trains disadvantaged/underprivileged youth in creative fields. The couple has collaborated on films such as Buddha in a Traffic Jam (2016), The Tashkent Files (2019), and The Kashmir Files (2022). In 2019, Vivek had written, directed, and produced a web series titled Bharat Ki Baat which was hosted by Pallavi.
Race / Ethnicity
- Mildly stocky frame
- Side-cropped, quiff hairstyle
- Affable smile
- Sports a thick beard
Vivek Agnihotri Facts
- Vivek had started his career working for some of the leading advertising agencies in the world including Ogilvy, McCann, and J. Walter Thompson. During this time, he served as the creative director for advertising campaigns of global brands like Gillette and Coca-Cola. He had also helmed promotional campaigns for some other major global brands including Nestlé and Procter & Gamble.
- He then started an advertising agency in Delhi called Art Beat. Through another entrepreneurial venture of his, called Vivek Agnihotri Creates, he produced and directed campaigns for products/services/brands/corporations/organizations such as Vicks, Godrej Group, Dainik Bhaskar, and the Blind Association of India.
- In the mid-1990s, he became involved with the direction and production of several TV serials/series including Yeh Kahan Aa Gaye Hum, Rishtey, Saturday Suspense, X-Zone, Anubandh, and Asambhav. His TV work won him multiple awards and critical acclaim.
- In 2017, he was selected as the convenor of the preview committee of the 48th International Film Festival of India, by the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting, a ministerial-level agency of the Government of India responsible for the formulation and administration of rules, regulations, and laws in the areas of information, broadcasting, the press, and the cinema of India.
- The same year, he was selected as a member of the board of India’s CBFC (Central Board of Film Certification), a statutory film-certification body under the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting.
- His 2018 short film, titled Mohammad and Urvashi, had won him many international and national awards. He had also received death threats for using the name Mohammad in the title of the film.
- His debut book, titled Urban Naxals: The Making of Buddha in a Traffic Jam (2018), a follow-up to his 2016 political thriller film Buddha in a Traffic Jam, was instrumental in the mainstreaming of the theme of urban Naxalism. It exposed the unholy alliance between the Naxalites (a group of far-left radical communists, operating in the jungles of central India, supportive of Maoist political sentiment and ideology), segments of the left-leaning news media, certain NGOs, terrorists, and some members of the Indian academia. The film had won him the ‘Best Writer’ and ‘Best Director’ awards at the Jakarta International Film Festival.
- In September 2020, he was appointed as a cultural representative at ICCR (Indian Council for Cultural Relations), an autonomous organization of the Government of India, involved in India’s global cultural relations, through cultural exchange with other countries and their people.
- In March 2022, after the release of his groundbreaking film titled The Kashmir Files, he was provided Y-category security (a security detail of 28 personnel, including 1 or 2 commandos and police personnel) across the country by the Government of India’s Ministry of Home Affairs based on inputs from the Intelligence Bureau, India’s domestic internal security and counter-intelligence agency. Vivek and his family had received multiple threats, of varying degrees, upon the release of the film, from radical Muslim groups and even from certain members of the Islamic clergy in India.
- This was because the film was based on the exodus of Hindus in the late 1980s and early 1990s from the Kashmir Valley after a targeted genocide by radical Islamists and Jihadists; a gut-wrenching chapter of modern Indian history that has been systematically hidden from the general discourse by the aforementioned lobby of Urban Naxals. The film exposed to the world the soul-destroying and mind-numbing horrors endured by Kashmiri Hindus and severely dented the ‘politically correct’ global narrative of the left-leaning news media wherein the followers of Islam, irrespective of their deeds, are always portrayed as victims.
Featured Image by Vivek Agnihotri / Instagram