Renowned Tamil writer, comedian and actor, Crazy Mohan passed away in Chennai on June 10, Monday. The eminent film and theatre personality, who was known for his witty one-liners, suffered an acute heart attack on Monday afternoon and was immediately taken to the Kauvery Hospital in Chennai. Efforts to revive him with the defibrillator failed and he was declared dead at 2 pm. He was 66 years old.
Born in 1952, Mohan graduated as a mechanical engineer from the College of Engineering, Guindy in 1973. His first stint as a scriptwriter was when he was in college, as an engineering student. He then started writing scripts for his brother Maadhu Balaji’s drama troupe in RKM Vivekananda College, Chennai.
Crazy Mohan's first film was K Balachander's Poikkal Kudhirai for which he wrote the dialogues.
Also a painter Crazy Mohan was in the habit of writing one venba every day, penning over 40,000 till date. Venba is a classical Tamil poetry form, the Thirukkural being a good example.
A Kalaimamani awardee, Crazy Mohan was popularly associated with Kamal Haasan and the duo together have given some of the most famous comedy dramas like Aboorva Sagodharargal, Michael Madana Kama Rajan, Sathi Leelavathi, Thenali, Panchathanthiram, Kadhala Kadhala, Avvai Shanmugi, Vasool Raja MBBS and Pammal K Sambantham. He also wrote Indian. Other famous films written by Mohan include Vietnam Colony and Magalir Mattum. Crazy Mohan also appeared in some of them, playing extremly funny cameos.
Crazy Mohan in a cameo in Aboorva Sagodharargal
Mohan was given the epithet ‘Crazy’ from his stage play ‘Crazy Thieves in Palavakkam’, his first full script that was written for Natakapriya in 1976. An article in The Hindu reads that Mohan added 'Crazy' to his name to distinguish himself from the other Mohan's working in a popular Tamil Magazine to which he was contributing. Crazy Creations was founded three years later in 1979. Some of his other popular plays include 'Crazy Kishkintha', 'Return of Crazy Thieves' and 'Madhil Mel Maadhu'.
His play 'Chocolate Krishna' has been staged more than 500 times till date. His brother Maadhu Balaji played the role of Maadhu in the famous Maadhu-Cheenu combination. Cheenu, who was Crazy Mohan's longtime associate, passed away in 2018.
Recalling his friendship with Cheenu after his demise last year, Mohan had said in an interview, ”I was a judge in one of his inter-collegiate drama festivals where he was participating. Immediately, I started offering him roles in our dramas.”
Here are some of the scenes that will remind us of Crazy Mohan's impeccably timed wisecracks.