Janaki Sabesh

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Janaki Sabesh
Janaki Sabesh Image.jpg
Bornc. 1969
Years active1992–present

Janaki Sabesh is an Indian media professional, actor, model, storyteller, author of children's book, theatre and voiceover artist.[1] Throughout her film career, she has played the "screen mother" to several leading actors,[2] appearing predominantly in Tamil and Telugu movies.

Early life[edit]

Janaki was born in Bangalore. She did her initial schooling in Carmel School, Kolkata and then from DTEA Senior Secondary School, New Delhi. She holds a bachelor's degree in political science from Lady Shri Ram College for Women, Delhi and a master's degree in mass communication from Jamia Millia, Delhi.[3]


In 1991, Janaki Sabesh assisted Simi Garewal with her documentary on Rajiv Gandhi called India's Rajiv.[3][4] She made her professional acting debut in the movie Minsara Kanavu starring Kajol and Arvind Swamy, in which she played a nun. She later went on to act in Shankar's magnum opus Jeans, where she played Aishwarya Rai's mother. Since then, she has acted in over 25 movies, including the blockbuster hits Minnale and Ghilli, often playing the role of a mother.

She has modelled for leading brands like Cadburys, Pepsodent, KFJ, NAC jewellers, Chakra Gold Tea, Jansons Dhoti to name a few. She has also appeared in a web series titled Black Sheep on the YouTube channel of Stray Factory, Rascalas.Janaki's work as a theatre artist includes plays with Chennai-based theatre groups, Crea- Shakti & Madras Players.Janaki Sabesh's engagement with children began when she produced an audio cassette “The Learning Train” (1995) that simplified the world of numbers through story and songs.

She also runs her own storytelling initiative, Golpo - Tales Unlimited. The word Golpo in Bengali means "story". Her sessions are an interactive mix of narration, music and movement. She also conducts workshops for parents, teachers and students which centre on motivation and the productive uses of storytelling.

Janaki Sabesh turned an author in 2018 with her first picture book, "The Jungle Storytelling Festival" published by Tulika in 9 languages

Selected filmography[edit]

Year Film Role Language
1997 Minsaara Kanavu Sister Agnes Tamil
1998 Jeans Madhumitha's mother Tamil
1999 Jodi Guest appearance Tamil
2000 Kushi Jennifer's mother Tamil
2001 Kushi Siddhartha Roy/Siddu's mother Telugu
Minnale Rajiv Samuel's mother Tamil
Poovellam Un Vasam Chinna's mother Tamil
2001 Shah Jahan Mahee's mother Tamil
2002 Run Siva's mother Tamil
2003 Boys Renuka Tamil
Enakku 20 Unakku 18 Cameo appearance Tamil
Nee Manasu Naaku Telusu Cameo appearance Telugu
2004 Ghilli Saravanavelu's mother Tamil
Vaanam Vasappadum Poongkothai's mother Tamil
Aayutha Ezhuthu Doctor's wife Tamil
2006 Vettaiyaadu Vilaiyaadu Janaki Tamil
Vallavan Vallavan's mother Tamil
Photographer John's sister-in-law Malayalam
2007 Shankar Dada Zindabad Sandhya's mother Telugu
2008 Dhaam Dhoom Tamil
2009 Ayan Kamalesh's aide Tamil
2010 Singam Kavya's mother Tamil
Maro Charitra Balu's mother Telugu
2011 Nootrenbadhu Annalakshmi Tamil
180 Annapurna Telugu
2012 Billa II David's sister Tamil
2013 Singam 2 Kavya's mother Tamil
2014 Poojai Divya's mother Tamil
2017 Si3 Kavya's mother Tamil
2022 Achcham Madam Naanam Payirppu Naidu Aunty Tamil


  1. ^ "From 'Ghilli' amma to children's writer, meet Janaki Sabesh in her new avatar". 15 August 2018.
  2. ^ Deepa Venkatraman (15 June 2013). "It's all in the mind". The Hindu. Retrieved 24 June 2013.
  3. ^ a b Y. Sunita Chowdhary (24 May 2010). "Exuding positivity". The Hindu. Retrieved 24 June 2013.
  4. ^ "India's Rajiv - Credits (1:01:20)". Youtube. Archived from the original on 6 April 2017. Retrieved 17 March 2017.

Press articles[edit]