Mahendran (born as Alexander)[is an Indian film director in the Tamil film industry. Though largely ignored during his times, Mahendran is regarded as one of the greatest film makers of Tamil cinema and has inspired many upcoming directors. Particularly he has been an inspiration for the legends of Tamil cinema like Mani Ratnam and Rajinikanth. Mahendran entered the film industry as a screenwriter, writing scripts for nearly 26 films. He made an immediate impact with his first directional venture Mullum Malarum (1978). Mahendran’s next film Uthiripookkal, based on a short story written by Pudumaipithan, firmly established him as an important film maker in Tamil cinema. His Nenjathai Killathe won three National Film Awards including the award for the best regional film.