Dileep (born 27 October 1968; Malayalam: ദീലീപ്) is a Malayalam film actor, producer, and mimicry artist. His real name is Gopalakrishnan. He started his film career as an assistant director to Kamal. He rose into prominence as a lead actor during the early 2000s. Dileep, who began his career as a mimicry artist, excels in films particularly of the comedy genre.
Malayalam Super Star Dileep married actress Manju Warrier in 1998. Their marriage created a controversy on whether married heroines have to leave the field or not as Manju Warrier was the leading female actor in the Malayalam cinema during the late 90s. She chose not to act after marriage. They got married on 20 October 1998 at the Aluva
Dileep started his career in a troupe called Kalabavan, working as a mimicry artist. Later he got a chance to be the assistant director to Kamal. While being an assistant director, Dileep did some small roles, debuting with just a small scene in Kamal's Mukesh starred Ennodu Ishtam Koodaamo (1992). He was then brought up by actor Jayaram. He recommended his name to many directors. The film Manathe Kottaram (1994) gave him the first break. Other minor roles during this time includes Joshi's Mammootty starred Sainyam (1993) and Sibi Malayil's Sindoora Rekha (1995).
By the mid-90s he started getting more prominent roles. He played a supporting role in Sathyan Anthikkad's Jayaram starred Thooval Kottaram(1996). He also did another supporting role in the Jayaram starred film Swapna Lokathe Balabhaskaran (1996). The film Sallapam (1996) was a turning point in his career, with the commercial success of the film he started becoming noted as an actor. He plays the lead role in Kamal's Ee Puzhayum Kadannu (1996). Both Sallapam and Ee Puzhayum Kadannu had him co-star with his wife Manju Warrier. He did a supporting role inI.V. Sasi's Mohanlal starrer Varnapakittu (1997). It was playing Unnikrishnan in Raffi-Meccartin's Punjabi House (1998) that made him popular as a comic actor. Another interesting role of that time was Ommanakuttan in Meenathil Thalikettu (1998). His first Priyadarshan film was Megham(1999). A noted film by the end of the decade is Lal Jose's Chandranudikkunna Dikhil (1999), where he first co-stars with Kavya Madhavan.
Some of his interesting comedy films in the early 2000s include Mr. Butler (2000), Darling Darling (2000), and Ee Parakkum Thalika (2001). A major commercial success was Raffi-Meccartin's Thenkasipattanam (2000), where he co-stars with Suresh Gopi and Lal. A. K. Lohithadas'sJoker (2000) did very well as well, Dileep was noted for playing Babu. With the commercial success of such comedy-melodramas, Sibi Malayil'sIshtam (2001), Aku Akbar and Aby Jose's Mazhathullikkilukkam (2002), and Sasi Shankar's Kunjikkoonan (2002), Dileep had established himself as a commercially viable actor. He won the Kerala State Film Special Jury Award for playing Kunjan in Kunjikkoonan. It was playing Madhavan inLal Jose's Meesha Madhavan (2002) that made a star out of Dileep. It was quite different from his usual slapstick roles. He later went on to play in Shafi's Kalyanaraman (2002), Jayaraj's Thilakkam (2003), and Johny Antony's C.I.D. Moosa (2003) (which he produced himself). He also produced and starred in T. V. Chandran's critically acclaimed Kadhavaseshan (2004). His comic timing and dialogue delivery in films made him very popular among the Malayali audience. He is known by critics to have brought about the rise of slapstick comedy in Malayalam cinema which till then was known to be realistic and effective. Though there is criticism from certain quarters that he has been typecast in slapstick comic roles. In 2004, he starred in Priyadarshan's Vettam.
His role as a transvestite man from the family of fishermen in Lal Jose's Chanthupottu (2005) won him many accolades, including the Special Jury Award of the Kerala State Film Awards. He fared as an action hero in Runway (2004), Kochirajavu (2005), Lion (2006), Chess (2006), Don (2006). Critics and audiences alike have responded badly to his performance in Shaji Kailas's Don. He played the athlete Arjun in The Speed Track the debut of director Jayasurya. His second film with the acclaimed director Sathyan Anthikkad, Vinodayathra, was released in April 2007. It is one of the appreciated Malayalam movies of the year 2007. He also had the chance to play in Blessy's Calcutta News (2008), though this film wasn't as well received compared to Blessy's previous films.
Dileep produced Joshi's Twenty:20 (2008), which is considered to be the highest-grossing film in Malayalam cinema.In 2009,he has an good career.His both films,Crazy Gopalan and Colours performed very well at the box-office. Dileep's latest film is Siddique's Body Guard which will be released in April 2009.