R. Balki, is Chairman and Chief Creative Officer of the advertising agency Lowe Lintas (India), an ad filmmaker and Hindi film director. He is best known for Cheeni Kum (2007) and Paa (2009).
He started his career with Mudra at the age of 23. His main passion had always been film making. After college, he even applied to the Madras Film Institute to do a course in direction. However, he did not like the panel that interviewed him, so he walked out. After this, he got into the Masters in Computer Application (MCA) course in a college directly opposite the film institute. He always liked computers, so he thought that he could do well in this course. After studying there for three years, he was thrown out in the last year because of lack of attendance. According to him, this was mainly because he played a lot of cricket and watched a lot of movies.
He saw an ad in the papers for Mudra and he remembered seeing it after Buniyaad. The ad asked people to send in 100 words describing who they were. His idol was Ramesh Sippy when he started his career; he wished to emulate him in advertising and got to meet Sippy only much later.
He has written and directed Cheeni Kum (2007), which starred Amitabh Bachchan and Tabu. His second feature film was the critically acclaimed and commercially successful Paa, (produced by Sunil Manchanda), released on 4 December 2009, starring Amitabh Bachchan, Abhishek Bachchan, and Vidya Balan.
Another of Balki's dreams is to play cricket, even if it is for one match. Ilaiyaraaja, the noted Indian composer, is his favourite composer.