KOCHI: In a twist reminiscent of a film's climax and putting an end to a decade-old gossip, Malayalam film actors Dileep and Kavya Madhavan got married in a simple, yet star-studded ceremony here on Friday.
The two stars, dressed in traditional Kerala style, exchanged garlands at 9.45 a.m. at a venue where the ceremony was broadcast live.
The marriage, much speculated upon in the media in the past couple of years, was to be limited to a closed circle. However, nearly 300 persons including close relatives of the couple and personalities from the film-world attended the function on the seventh floor of Hotel PGS Vedanta at Kaloor.
In an effort to ensure privacy, signboards planted on the sixth floor only pointed to a 'film pooja.'
Guests from the film fraternity who attended the function included actors Mammootty, Salim Kumar, Jayaram, Janardhanan, KPAC Lalitha, Kaviyoor Ponnamma, Meera Jasmine, Jomol and Chippy, directors Kamal, Joshiy and Siddique, and producers Suresh Kumar and Renjith.
This is the second marriage for both Dileep and Kavya. Her first marriage in 2009 to a former actor and now a Kuwait-based NRI ended in divorce within a year. Dileep married Manju Warrier, his co-star in three films, in 1998 in a similar surprise manner. But they separated legally in January 2015.
Dileep spoke to the media about his marriage. "You all are aware of the problems in my life. However, Kavya was not the reason for any of them. Hence I wanted to marry the girl who had been made a scapegoat by linking her to me. I spoke to my daughter, mother and brother and they all extended their support. The three of us, Kavya, Meenakshi and me, want to have a happy and peaceful life with my mother," he said.
Dileep's daughter from his first marriage, Meenakshi, a standard ten student, was among those who attended the wedding. “I support the marriage. It was I who I forced them to marry,” she said to the media.
Dileep and Kavya Madhavan started their careers with the film Pookkalam Varavayi, directed by Kamal.
Kavya was a child artiste in that film. The couple have acted in 21 films together, being the lead pair in 16 of them. Kavya's first film as lead star opposite Dileep was Chandranudikkunna Dikkil by Lal Jose in 1999. Her last release Pinneyum directed by Adoor Gopalakrishnan was also opposite Dileep.
The other films of the pair are Meesa Madhavan, Thenkasipattanam, Thilakkam, Lion, Pappy Appacha and Christian Brothers.
The couple's first outing together after their marriage will be part 2 of their superhit film Runway directed by Joshiy.