"I think this ability to make people laugh comes with some level of intelligence. Our industry has a host of comedians and I have always felt any of them could have become someone great. Vivek could be our very own Woody Allen, but he just has to make the effort," Ratnam told reporters here on Saturday.
Speaking at the audio launch of Vivek-starrer Tamil drama Nanthan Bala, he said: "I have always envied the comedians and wonder how they could make so many people laugh. Even today when you revisit comedy from the 1950s' films, you will be surprised to know that it still works".
The 57-year old filmmaker was also joined by composer AR Rahman and veteran filmmaker K Balachander at the event.
Vivek, who has been in the industry for over two decades as a celebrated comedian, is essaying a serious role in Nanthan Bala, which is directed by R Kannan.
Some of Vivek's best comic performances are from Tamil films such as Run, Saamy and Perazhagan.