Rajinikanth was born as Shivaji Rao Gaekwad on December 12, 1950 in a Marathi family in Bangalore. He was named after the Maratha warrior, Chhatrapati Shivaji. Rajinikanth was the fourth child of Jijabai and Ramojirao Gaekwad, who was a police constable. In the initial years of his childhood and youth, he struggled a lot due to financial issues. When he was nine years old, he lost his mother, to support his family he also had to coolie.
As a child, he was studious and “mischievous” with a great interest in cricket, football and basketball. It was during this time he began acting in plays at the math. His aspiration towards theatre grew at the math and was once given an opportunity to enact the role of Ekalavya‘s friend from the Hindu epic Mahabharata.