Madathil Thekkepaattu Vasudevan Nair popularly known as MT was born in Kudallur, a small village in the present day Palakkad district . He became an acclaimed Indian author, screenplay writer and film director. He is a prolific and versatile writer in modern Malayalam literature, and is considered as one of the masters of post-Independence Indian literature.
At the age of 20 as a chemistry undergraduate, he won the prize for the best short story in Malayalam at World Short Story Competition conducted by The New York Herald Tribune which shot him to the epitome of popularity.
His debut novel Naalukettu (Ancestral Home- translated to English as The Legacy), wrote at the age of 23, won the Kerala Sahitya Akademi Award in 1958.
His other novels include Manju (Mist), Kaalam (Time), Asuravithu (The Prodigal Son – translated to English as The Demon Seed) and Randamoozham (The Second Turn).
Most of his works are oriented towards the basic Malayalam family structure and culture and many of them were path-breaking in the history of Malayalam literature.
His three seminal novels on life in the matriarchal family in Kerala are Naalukettu, Asuravithu, and Kaalam. Randamoozham, which retells the story of the Mahabharatha from the point of view of Bhimasena, is widely credited as his masterpiece.
M. T. Vasudevan Nair is a script writer and director of Malayalam films. He has directed seven films and written the screenplay for around 54 films. He won the National Film Award for Best Screenplay four times for: Oru Vadakkan Veeragatha (1989), Kadavu(1991), Sadayam (1992), and Parinayam (1994), which is the most by anyone in the screenplay category.
He was honoured with the highest literary award in India, Jnanpith, in 1995 for his overall contribution to Malayalam literature.
In 2005, India’s third highest civilian honour Padma Bhushan was awarded to him. He has won numerous other awards and recognition including Sahitya Akademi Award, Kerala Sahitya Akademi Award, Vayalar Award, Vallathol Award, Ezhuthachan Award and Mathrubhumi Literary Award.
He was awarded the J.C. Daniel Award for lifetime achievement in Malayalam cinema for the year 2013. He served as the editor of Mathrubhumi Illustrated Weekly for several years.