S. Ravi Varman, ISC, is an Indian Cinematographer, filmmaker, producer and writer. He has predominantly worked in films of Indian languages Tamil, Malayalam and Hindi language films. Known for his realistic picturization and poetic framing sense, Ravi Varman began his career in Malayalam films. He has directed a romantic film in Tamil titled Moscowin Kavery and also filmed the music video for the song “Bird Flu” by British Tamil songwriter M.I.A..
Ravi Varman was born in a village called Poyyoundarkudikkadu near Thanjavur, Tamil Nadu, India. Varman lost his mother at a young age. Just before she died there was a wedding in his neighborhood and his mother’s image was accidentally captured by the wedding photographer in one of the photos. Varman went to the studio and asked for a picture to be enlarged and learnt what “out of focus” meant. Thus, he developed an interest in photography and grew up with a passion for watching movies – though at the time, he never considered working in film as a possible career.
After working in Malayalam films since 1999 for three years, he worked in Bollywood for the film Yeh Dil in 2003. He later worked in the Telugu film Jai and received more offers in Hindi, such as Armaan, Bee Busthar, Ramji Londonwale, and Phir Milenge, as well as the Indian English film Five Five Four.
Though a Tamilian, it was not until 2002 when he started to work in Tamil films, with his first one being Susi Ganeshan’s Five Star. He continued to work with popular directors as cinematographer in Tamil films, including S. Shankar’s Anniyan, Gautham Menon’s Vettaiyaadu Vilaiyaadu, K. S. Ravikumar’s Dasavathaaram and Villu, which was directed by Prabhu Deva.Besides feature films, he has credit of working on more than 500 Television Commercials, Music Albums, Short Films and Documentary. Nonetheless, his flair for literature has led him to embark on writing for an on-line literary magazine ‘Yavarum kelir’ for Tamiz studio.