V. Sethuraman alias Sethu – Tamil actor best known for his debut flick, ‘Kanna Laddu Thinna Aasaiya’

V. Sethuraman, better known by his screen name Sethu (1984-2020) was a Tamil film actor and celebrity dermatologist from Tamil Nadu. Though he has played a few roles on big screen, both in lead and parallel lead roles, he is a well-known face among Tamil movie viewers.

A close friend of Santhanam, he starred aside him in a parallel lead in 2013 Tamil comedy hit movie, ‘Kanna Laddu Thinna Aasaiya’. He shared screen space with Santhanam once again for Vaaliba Raja (2016) in a parallel lead and Sakka Podu Podu Raja (2017) in a cameo appearance, and did his last movie, 50/50 (2019) in a solo lead role. He shocked the whole cine world when he passed away on 26 March 2020 following a cardiac arrest. This physician was just 35 years old when he passed away.

A dermatologist by profession and a seasonal actor

Sethu hailed from a family of medical practitioners. He wanted to join the same profession, yet he dreamt to become an actor as well. He completed MBBS from Annamalai University, and also completed MD in dermatology from the same university followed by fellowship from the National Skin Centre in Singapore. He later started his career as a dermatologist and launched a skin clinic called ZI Clinic in Alwarpet in 2016. By that time he already had started his career in Tamil film industry, and had many cine artists in friends’ circle. In fact the inauguration of his clinic was attended by many cine personalities based in Chennai.

He marked his screen debut with hit comedy ‘Kanna Laddu Thinna Aasaiya’ in 2013

He was interested in acting during his college days. Yet as desired by his parents, he decided to take advanced studies in medicine, before joining films. He had already completed his MBBS studies and was working as a trainee doctor in dermato surgery department in Institute of Social Pediatrics, Stanley Hospital when he marked his screen debut at the age of 29. He had just completed his post-graduation in dermatology from Annamalai University in Chidambaram

Sethu’s 10-year old close friendship with actor Santhanam became instrumental in joining films. He marked his screen debut with 2013 movie, Kanna Laddu Thinna Aasaiya directed by K.S. Manikandan, where he was one among the three male leads who tries to woo the lead actress played on screen by Vishakha Singh. The movie was produced by Santhanam. The movie was a huge hit, and he made an impressive debut playing the role of lead role of Shiva, an aspiring model who finally wins heroine’s heart.

The whole world has been fighting with 2019–20 coronavirus pandemic, when this physician died of a cardiac arrest aged only 35. He used to post videos on instagram and youtube discussing several health topics, and he had even posted a post on Corona in instagram, just 4 days before his death.

He was active in social media discussing health topics till his death

He shared screen space with his friend Santhanam in first three of his four films

He took a small break from acting after his screen debut and continued in his profession of dermatology. He turned a celebrity dermatologist, and also dabbed with his second profession of acting since then. His second movie, Vaaliba Raja, once again with Santhanam was released in 2016, and he did a cameo appearance in Santhanam’s Sakka Podu Podu Raja in 2017. He marked his debut as a solo hero through 50/50 which had a theatre release on 27 December 2019. The horror comedy was not a commercial success, and he shared screen space with Shruthi Ramakrishnan. Exactly three months later he died of cardiac arrest on 26 March 2020. He was survived with his wife and a child.

Sethu – Some interesting and less-known facts

1. His debut film Kanna Laddu Thinna Aasaiya was inspired from Indru Poi Naalai Vaa, which also had a Hindi version release – Chashme Buddoor, a couple of months later in 1981. Chashme Buddoor had a remake version with the same title, as well as another movie, Nayee Padosan (2002), and interestingly all these versions were commercial hits. Malayalam movie, Odaruthammava Aalariyam with inspired elements was a commercial success at the box office.

2. He worked as a consultant and dermatologist to many celebrities from south Indian film industry. He used to give advices to cine personalities related to skin problems and treatment.

3. His father and sister are physicians.

4. He shared screen space with his fellow friend and actor Santhanam in first three out of four films in which he acted.

5. After his screen debut, he got many offers from Tamil and Telugu and Malayalam film industry too. However he gave importance to his medical profession and joined the department of cosmetology, under his mentor Dr. Ratnavel.

Also read about Tamil one-hit wonder Kunal Singh who committed suicide at a very young age.


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A freelance writer and blogger by profession since October 2011, interested in writing over a wide range of topics. Hope you enjoy my writings. I belong to one of the beautiful places of the world, Kerala, nicknamed as 'God's own country'.

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