K. Venu Gopal known popularly by his stage name Nedumudi Venu (Malayalam: നെടുമുടി വേണു), is a Malayalam film actor from Kerala, India. He has also written screenplays and has directed one film.
Venu was born to P. K. Kesavan and P. Kunjikkuttiyamma in Nedumudi, Alappuzha as one of their five children. He was involved in art and music since his academic period. He was also a member of the Kerala Students Union. After graduating from Sanatana Dharma College, Alappuzha, he worked as a journalist in Kalakaumudi and as a teacher in a tutorial institute.
Venu was living in Thiruvananthapuram when he made friends with the likes of Aravindan, Padmarajan and Bharath Gopi. This ultimately paved way for his film career.
Venu started his career in theatre and went on to act in films. He debuted in the film Thambu (1978) by director G. Aravindan. His acting skills were showcased in the Bharathan film Aaravam. Padmarajan’s Oridathoru Phayalwan set a milestone for him. It marked his start in karanavar (head of the family) roles, which included most of his memorable performances.
Venu also wrote scripts for movies. He wrote the stories for the films Kattathe Kilikkoodu, Theertham, Sruthi, Ambada Njane, Oru Katha Oru Nunnakkatha, Savidham, and Angane Oru Avadhikkalathu. He also tried his hand in direction with Pooram. He has also acted in a few Tamil films with director Shankar, such as Kamal Hasan’s Indian and Vikram’s Anniyan.
Venu has also acted in some television serials. He won the Best Actor award for his role in ‘Saira at the Zimbabwe International Film Festival which concluded in September 2007; Saira was the only film from India to be included in the festival. The committee mentioned that he acted compellingly and convincingly in his portrayal of a man caught between secularism and fundamentalism.