Ramesh Sippy (born 23 January 1947) is an Indian film director and producer, best known for directing the popular and critically acclaimed film Sholay. He is of Sindhi Hindu descent, with an original last name of Sipahimalani. He is a winner of the civilian honour of Padma Shri in 2013.
Sippy’s father was producer G. P. Sippy. His son Rohan Sippy is a film director. His daughter Sheena was once married to Shashi Kapoor’s son, Kunal Kapoor until they divorced in 2004. Ramesh Sippy has been married twice; his current wife is actress Kiran Juneja.
Ramesh Sippy visited the sets of the film Sazaa, his father’s first film, when he was 6 years old. His first film job came at age nine, when he played Achala Sachdev’s son in the 1953 film Shahenshah. He worked in both the production and direction departments in films like Johar-Mehmood in Goa and Mere Sanam, which his father was producing. He worked for 7 years as an assistant before becoming the director of Andaz, in 1971. Although this was only a moderate success, his second film Seeta Aur Geeta (1972) was highly successful.
In 1975 he directed Sholay which went on to become the biggest blockbuster in Bollywood film history and won major acclaim. Sholay still remains one of the biggest blockbuster films in Hindi film history and remains one of the favourites for Hindi film audiences globally. While Sholay was a tribute to the Westerns, his next film Shaan in 1980 was inspired by the James Bond films. In 1982 he brought together veteran actor Dilip Kumar and the reigning superstar of the time Amitabh Bachchan in Shakti. While the film was only moderately successful, it won the Filmfare Best Movie Award. In 1985 he directed Saagar which was considered a comeback film for Dimple Kapadia.
He directed a successful television serial titled Buniyaad which focused on the Partition of India and aired on Indian television channel Doordarshan in 1987. The last three films he directed, Bhrashtachar (1989), Akayla (1991), and Zamana Deewana (1995) were box office flops and he has since not directed any film, as of 2015.
His string of hits with Amitabh Bachchan made him one of the golden directors who had a special working relationship with the actor (Yash Chopra, Prakash Mehra, Manmohan Desai, and Hrishikesh Mukherjee being the other four). In 2005 he received the Filmfare Best Film of 50 Years award for his legendary film, Sholay.
He has produced films directed by his son Rohan Sippy, such as Kuch Naa Kaho (2003), Bluffmaster (2005) and Dum Maro Dum (2011). In 2006 he produced Taxi №9211 which was directed by Milan Luthria. In 2008 he produced Kunaal Roy Kapur’s The President is Coming as well as the Akshay Kumar-Deepika Padukone film, Chandni Chowk to China, directed by Nikhil Advani.