Balachandra Menon is an Indian film actor, director, script writer, distributor, editor, composer, singer and producer who works in Malayalam cinema.He made a number of popular films in the 1980s and 1990s.He won the National Film Award for Best Actor for his role as Ismail in the 1998 film Samaantharangal, which was also directed by him. Along with Fazil and Padmarajan, Menon has introduced new actors into the Malayalam film industry. Actors who made their debut in his films include Shobhana in April 18, Parvathy in Vivahithare Ithile Ithile, Maniyan Pillai Raju in Maniyan Pillai Athava Maniyan Pillai, Karthika in Manicheppu Thurannappol, Annie in Ammayane Sathyam, and Kausalya aka Nandini in 19 April. Many of his films explore the theme of uncommon relationships between common people. His box office hits in the early 1980s included Chiriyo Chiri, Kaaryam Nissaram and Prasnam Gurutharam.