Worked With:

Poppy Montgomery


Ed Helms


Kristin Kreuk


Kristen Bell


Rex Linn


Piper Perabo


Hayden Panettiere


James Roday


Michael Clarke Duncan


Chris Pine


Martin Landau

Sendhil Ramamurthy Biography


Home > Actors > R > Ramamurthy, Sendhil > Biography


Birth Name: Sendhil Ramamurthy
Born: 05/17/1974
Birth Place: Chicago, Illinois, USA


Born in Chicago, IL, but raised in San Antonio, TX, Sendhil Amithab Ramamurthy came into the world on May 17, 1974 as the oldest of two children. The son of Indian-born physician parents, Ramamurthy attended Tufts University with the intention of following in his parents' footsteps. Ramamurthy's career path took a fateful detour, however, during his junior year after taking his first drama course - a class he signed up for only to fulfill a graduation requirement. Though Ramamurthy later admitted that he took the class thinking it would be an easy 'A,' the young man was quickly humbled: "It was actually a lot of work but I loved every minute of it." In any case, it proved to have been time well spent. By his senior year, it was officially his new career calling. Though initially less than thrilled by their son's abrupt change in career plans, Ramamurthy's parents eventually came around. And while he ended up not getting his medical degree as they had hoped, Ramamurthy was able to reach an unexpected compromise, nevertheless. As it turned out, he later said, "I [wound up] playing a doctor on TV, so the parents were happy."

After graduating from Tufts in 1996 with a degree in history, Ramamurthy moved to England. There, he continued his studies at London's prestigious Webber Douglas Academy of Dramatic Arts. Breaking into television in the early new millennium, Ramamurthy's first major guest-starring role on the long-running medical drama "Casualty" (BBC-1, 1986- ) led to a three-episode stint as Corporal Alex Leonard on the military adventure series, "Ultimate Force." In 2002, Ramamurthy landed his first American role as Alexandra Spaulding's suave manservant, Lloyd, on the long-running daytime drama, "Guiding Light" (CBS, 1952- ). While the part was relatively small, Ramamurthy's exotic good looks, aristocratic bearing, and smooth accent were enough to catch the attention of other casting directors. Within a year, Ramamurthy had graduated to small roles on bigger shows - most notably the hit drama "Grey's Anatomy" and the cerebral police procedural, "Numb3rs" (CBS, 2005- ).

It was Ramamurthy's debut in the hottest new show of 2006, however, that truly signed his meal ticket. Auditioning for the role of brilliant geneticist, Dr. Mohinder Suresh on "Her s," Ramamurthy went in with little expectations. Originally written for a middle-aged actor, the role of Dr. Suresh bore little resemblance to what it eventually became. As Ramamurthy recalled, "I thought it was a mistake. I left the audition, went outside, and called my agent. I said, 'There are a bunch of older guys here, and me. I know you haven't seen me in awhile but come on! I haven't gotten that old!'" As it turned out, Ramamurthy had little to worry about. "Her s" creator Tim Kring was so impressed by Ramamurthy's audition that he actually went back and rewrote the entire pilot, changing the character's age and adjusting the back-story to make Mohinder Suresh the son of the original geneticist. According to Kring, the decision to make Suresh a younger man proved to be an inspired choice, rich with heretofore-unseen possibilities: "It's like a light bulb went off. I thought this [story] could be a lot more interesting if it was [Mohinder's] father who'd died and here was his son trying to follow in his footsteps the idea of a son trying to fulfill a father's destiny it's a classic archetype."

Ramamurthy's hiring also freed Kring to introduce a crucial storytelling device that he'd previously abandoned - that of a narrator. "He has one of the most beautiful speaking voices on the planet," said Kring, "why not take advantage of it?" In doing so, Ramamurthy also created a unique voice, thematically speaking, for those watching at home. As one of the only principles in the cast whose character did not possess super-powers, Ramamurthy's Dr. Suresh served as a de facto proxy for the viewing audience, often discovering information and unearthing plot details as they did. "[At first,] I was totally bummed. I won't lie to you I was like 'This sucks! All of my friends are gonna make fun of me. I'm the only one that d sn't have a power!' But now I like the fact that the audience sees these things through my eyes. ... I think if everybody had a power on the show, it would become 'The Justice League' or something like that."

Interestingly, this was not the first time that Ramamurthy had auditioned against type. Unwilling to let his ethnicity define his roles, Ramamurthy often auditioned for parts that called for physical opposites. Case in point: in 2005, Ramamurthy boldly tried out for the role of Dr. George O'Malley on "Grey's Anatomy." Though Ramamurthy wound up losing the part to Caucasian actor T.R. Knight, producers liked Ramamurthy enough to cast him in the pilot as an unnamed orderly.