Jijoy Rajagopalan is an Indian film actor and international theatre artist, who was featured in the theatre rendition of a Shakespearean play in the U. K. He works predominantly in the Malayalam film industry and made his Tamil debut with the hugely popular film Jai Bhim. Jijoy is also an associate professor in the acting department at the Film and Television Institute of India (FTII) in Pune, since 2014.
Jijoy Pulikal Rajagopalan was born on Wednesday, 1 September 1976 (age 45 years; as of 2021) in Irinjalakuda in Kerala, under the zodiac sign of Virgo. He attended Sree Narayana Higher Secondary School in his hometown till 1992, and he got his pre-degree from the Christ College in Irinjalakuda, Kerala. Jijoy then got enrolled at the University of Calicut in Malappuram, Kerala to pursue graduation of Arts in Economics. He also holds a bachelor’s degree in Theater Arts from the School of Drama, Thrissur. Following his bachelor’s, Jijoy worked in some films and serials and then went to Puducherry to M.A and M.Phil in Drama and Theatre Arts from the Pondicherry Central University, Kalapet. Apparently, the actor was a gold medalist in both M.A and M.Phil.
Hair Colour: Salt and Pepper
Eye Colour: Black
Parents & Siblings
His father’s name is P. R. Rajagopalan, and his mother’s name is K. G. Manghaladevi. Jijoy has two brothers – Binoy Pulikal Rajagopalan and Bejoy Pulikal Rajagopalan.
Wife & Children
Jijoy is married to Riya Mary Philip, and the couple has a son named Karma Jijoy Pulikal.
In 1987, Jijoy acted in his first play, Yadhartha Velakkaran, at the S N Higher Secondary School in Irinjalakuda, Kerela. Jijoy wrote and directed the play, and his character was called Velakkaran. He continued to do many more plays during his pre-degree, bachelor’s, and master’s degree.
The artist started out in theatre with The Indira Gandhi National Centre for the Arts, New Delhi. Rajagopalan did not limit himself to only India and was selected among 21 people who were a part of the theatre group that worked with the Royal Shakespeare Company. The play was produced by the British Council and performed in Swan Theater at Stratford-upon-Avon, UK. In 2005, Rajagopalan played the roles of Oberon and Theseus in the multilingual theatre remake of the famous Shakespearean play “A Midsummer Night’s Dream,” which was directed by Mr Tim Supple (UK). From April 2006 to December 2009, he toured with the group across five continents to perform at more than 350 shows in countries like the US, India, England, Italy, Canada, Australia, Japan, and more. According to the international artist, this exposure was a turning point in his acting career.
Television and Films
Jijoy stepped into the Malayalam industry with his first TV show Innocent Kadhakal in the 1990s, as Sathyan, and has appeared in around 10 TV shows since then. He did his first film, Niram, in the Malayalam language in 1999, and in the same year, he worked in two other films as well. Rajagopalan went on to do around 40 films in the subsequent years. In 2021, he made his Tamil debut with the widely acclaimed drama film, ‘Jai Bhim,’ which was a blockbuster hit. The actor played a character named Rajesh Munnar in the film.
In 2010, the actor debuted as a dubbing artist for the character of Jain Syriac Babu in the Malayalam film Shikkar. Since May 2014, Jijoy has also been serving as the Associate Professor in the Acting Department at Film and Television Institute of India, Pune, Maharashtra.
Besides acting, Jijoy enjoys performing Keralite martial arts Kalaripayatuh and listening to Carnatic music.
Rajagopalan revealed in an interview that he already knew from a young age that he wanted to be an actor. According to him, he got interested in acting and arts through music and theatre. Jijoy also actively participated in theatre and several plays when he was doing his pre-degree. Reportedly, his performances eventually earned him the title of ‘Kalaprathiba,’ and he also won the best actor award seven times in various university competitions. Talking about the same, Jijoy added,
I am a performer; I have been all my life.”