Born Joseph Vijay Chandrasekhar on June 22, 1974) is an Indian film actor. He began his career doing minor roles as a child artist in the Tamil Cinema Industry while also attending a theatre for stage plays, to follow his dream to act. After five years of minor and unnoticed roles in Tamil Lunguage films, Vijay gained Indian cinema's attention in 1996 by playing the role of Raja in Poove Unakkaga, his first blockbuster and since then he has acted in over forty Indian films, with his main intention being Tamil language ventures, earning him the title of Ilayathalapathy in 1996, the title name is now mentioned in the credits of all his projects.
Vijay comes from a family which has strong experience in the film industry. Father, S. A. Chandrasekar is a popular director and mother Shobha is an accomplished playback singer. Vijay performs predominantly in leading roles in medium-budget films, ranging from romantic comedies and dram to action thrillers. His most popular films include Poove Unakkaga (1996), Kadhalukku Mariyadhai (1997), Kushi (2000) and Ghilli (2004).