Did you know that Mr. M. Chandrakumar will walk on the red carpet at Venice Film Festival with other international celebrities? Here’s why. 

Mr. M. Chandrakumar is popularly known as Auto Chandran. He’s 51 years old, a class 10 dropout and is pretty much the average rickshaw driver from Tamil Nadu. Except, Chandrakumar is a writer. After a day of driving his passengers around the city of Coimbatore, he comes home and spills his thoughts on paper.

How is the autowallah an esteemed guest at one of the world’s biggest film festivals, you ask? Well, Chanrakumar had published a book called ‘Lock Up’ almost a decade ago in 2006 which, incidentally,  caught the eye of Tamil director Vetrimaaran, who later based his film Visaranai on it. Visaranai was chosen as one of the entries for the festival’s competition, which landed the talented Mr. Chandrakumar a seat at the festival.


(Image Courtesy: indianews.eu)

When asked about his source of inspiration, Chandrakumar answered, “I have always been observing life which has been my teacher.”

Vetrimaaran was also asked what drew him to Chandrakumar’s writing. The director promptly said, “I liked the earnestness with which Chandran documented his suffering in Andhra Pradesh at the hands of police. This is the only work of his that I have read and would take a look at his other novels later. For now, we are focused on Venice and I am happy the novelist is also accompanying me to the festival.”

We look forward to seeing Chandrakumar (or at least pictures of him) at Venice Film Festival, which takes place on September 12. Stay tuned for more news.