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Jyothika Saravanan
Jyothika Filmfare 2014.jpg
Jyothika at Filmfare Awards South 2014
Born Jyothika Sadanah
(1977-10-18) 18 October 1977 (age 40)[1]
Mumbai, India
Residence Chennai, Tamil Nadu, India
Occupation Film actress
Years active


Spouse(s) Suriya (2006–present)
Children 2
Family Roshini (sister)
Nagma (half-sister)
Karthi (brother–in–law)
Sivakumar (father–in–law)

Jyothika Saravanan (née Jyothika Sadanah on 18 October 1977) is an Indian actress who predominantly appears in Tamil films.[2][1] She also acted in some Kannada, Malayalam, Telugu and Hindi films.

She debuted in Bollywood in the Hindi film Doli Saja Ke Rakhna, directed by Priyadarshan. She starred in her first Tamil film Vaali and her first Telugu film Tagore, opposite Chiranjeevi.

Jyothika received critical praise for playing a blind woman in Perazhagan, Alter-egos Chandramukhi and Ganga in Chandramukhi, A mute and deaf girl in Mozhi and a middle aged woman in 36 Vayadhinile. However, the turning point of her career came with the success of Vaali (1999) and Kushi (2000). At the peak of her career, she agreed to play the role of an antagonist in Pachaikili Muthucharam (2007).[3][4][5]

She received her first Filmfare Awards for Vaali as Filmfare Award for Best Female Debut – South.[6] She was awarded the Filmfare Best Tamil Actress Award for Kushi. A string of successful films followed and gained prominence for her performances in Kushi, Dhool, Thenali, Thirumalai, Dumm Dumm Dumm, Snegithiye, Kaaka Kaaka, Perazhagan, Chandramukhi, June R, Pachaikili Muthucharam, Mozhi, 36 Vayadhinile, Magalir Mattum , Naachiyaar.

Jyothika left the industry at the peak of her career marrying actor Suriya on 11 September 2006, after being engaged in a relationship for several years,[7] and with whom she was paired in seven films. She won three Filmfare Awards, three Tamil Nadu State Film Awards, Dinakaran Awards, International Tamil Film Awards and other awards and nominations. She is also a recipient of the Kalaimamani Award.[8]

She made a comeback in the film 36 Vayadhinile (2015) where her performance was given strong reviews and she received Filmfare Critics Award for Best Actress for the movie.[9][10][11]

Early and personal life

Jyothika was born to Chander Sadanah, a film producer and Seema Sadanah, in Mumbai, India. Actress Nagma is her half-sister. She completed her schooling in Learner's Academy, Mumbai. She later majored in Psychology at the Mithibai College in Mumbai. She also has a sister Roshini (born Radhika) and a brother Suraj, who is working as an assistant director for Priyadarshan.

Jyothika married actor Suriya on 11 September 2006,[12] with whom she was paired in seven films; Poovellam Kettuppar, Uyirile Kalanthathu, Kaakha Kaakha, Perazhagan, Maayavi, June R and Sillunu Oru Kaadhal. The couple has two children, daughter Diya (born 10 August 2007)[13] and son Dev (born 7 June 2010).[14]



She made her acting debut in the Hindi film Doli Saja Ke Rakhna, directed by Priyadarshan, but it did not do well commercially. In a 2000 interview with India Today, Priyadarshan said that he "lapsed into depression" after the film flopped.[15]

Her first role was in Vaali (1999), for which she won Filmfare Award for Best Female Debut – South.[6] and Dinakaran Best Female Debut[16] Later that year, she starred in Poovellam Kettuppar, in which she played the love interest of the protagonist, portrayed by her husband Suriya. The success of the film Kushi became a turning point in her career.[17][18] A string of successful films followed between 2000 and 2002, among them Mugavaree, Dum Dum Dum and Snegithiye. Her characters had equal importance as the hero.[19] She also acted with Kamal Haasan during this period, in the comedy film Thenali.[17] She was awarded the Filmfare Best Tamil Actress Award for her role in Kushi.[20][21][22] Her role in Rhythm though small, has been widely appreciated.[23] After the success of Kushi, she was signed to play the female lead in Friends, opposite Vijay, but she was replaced by Devayani.[24] She collaborated with Mani Ratnam for the first time by appearing in his production house Madras Talkies' romantic comedy Dumm Dumm Dumm, alongside Madhavan. The film won positive acclaim and became a success not only in Tamil Nadu, but also in Andhra with its dubbed version.[25][26] She also made an appearance in the Kannada film industry opposite Upendra in Nagarahavu.[27] She had a dual role in this film.[28] Later, she appeared in the Tamil thriller film Snegithiye, directed by Priyadarshan, made in all south languages.[29][30]


In 2003, she starred in Dhool with Vikram, Kaakha Kaakha with Suriya, Thirumalai with Vijay, all of which did well at the box office, Kaakha Kaakha, in particular, being one of the biggest hits of her career. She was listed amongst the Best Actress nominees in Filmfare Awards South for her roles in Dhool and Kaakha Kaakha. She got International Tamil Film Awards Special Jury For Best Actress.[31] Dhool, Kaakha Kaakha and Thirumalai were amongst the top 10 films of the year and The Hindu wrote that she was "virtually the undisputed queen of Kollywood".[32] Actor Vikram referred to her as Lady Kamal Haasan due to her dedication in acting.[33] In 2004, she acted in a double role in the critically acclaimed Perazhagan, opposite Suriya. She won Tamil Nadu State Best Actress Award for the film. In 2005, she acted in Manmadhan, opposite Silambarasan.[34][35] She also performed the lead female role in the Telugu film Tagore, opposite Chiranjeevi, which was screened at the International Indian Film Academy Awards, and was a commercial success.[36][37]

Her most successful film to date[when?] is the Rajinikanth-starrer Chandramukhi 2005, in which she played the title role.[38] She won accolades for her performance in Chandramukhi including a Tamil Nadu State Film Awards and Filmfare Awards Nomination.[8][39] She was also offered a chance to act with Mohanlal in Udayon, directed by Bhadran, but she could not do it due to busy schedules in Tamil.[40] Her first release in 2006 was Saravana, opposite Silambarasan after Manmadhan.[41] Her role in June R was noticed before the release of the film.[42] Jyothika's performance is fine tuned and emotionally engaged.[according to whom?] She has underplayed her emotions beautifully.[43][44] Her films in 2006 include Vettaiyadu Villaiyadu, a crime-thriller film written and directed by Gautham Menon and Sillunu Oru Kaadhal, opposite Suriya.[45] The former was dubbed into Hindi as The Smart Hunt.[46]


Her last films were Gautham Menon's Pachaikili Muthucharam and the critically acclaimed Mozhi, both in 2007. Her roles in these two films, as a negative character in the former (which she played for the first time) and as a deaf and mute in the latter earned her widespread appreciation. Among these, Mozhi won her acclaim. Her performance took her very close to winning the National Film Award for Best Actress.[7] However, she lost the award by a narrow margin at the end.[10] In Pachaikili Muthucharam she had a crucial role and pulled off a memorable performance.[47][48] Her Malayalam films Raakilipattu and Seetha Kalyanam were released in 2007 and 2009 respectively after languishing in development hell for years.[49][50] Jyothika later made a comeback through television adverts.[51] In 2008, she appeared in a short film Herova? Zerova?.[52] The film was written and produced by her father-in-law Sivakumar and also starred Vijay, R. Madhavan and Suriya.[citation needed]

2015–present (comeback)

Jyothika made her comeback to Tamil Cinema with 36 Vayadhinile, a remake of the hit Malayalam film How Old Are You?. Jyothika received critical acclaim for her performance in the film as a middle-aged housewife who sets out to stand on her own. She was awarded the Filmfare Critics Award for Best Actress at the 63rd Filmfare Awards South. She also received Behindwoods Gold Medals For best Actress and Best Movie Award along with Suriya and also got many nominations for best actress. The film went on to become a moderate success at the box office. In the audio release of 36 Vayadhinile, and also at the successful release of the film Jyothika she credited Suriya, her husband, and some of her close friends as the major motivation for her comeback. Recently,[when?] in a Tamil TV show named Koffee with DD, Jyothika said that we can expect her in future as an artist, not as a heroine.[citation needed]

After the success of her film 36 Vayadhinile, in February 2016, director Bramma approached Jyothika to play the leading role in a "female-centric" script he had written and impressed by the offer, her husband Suriya agreed to finance the film.[53] Jyothika subsequently participated in a series of workshops to get ready for her role in the film for twenty days.[54][53] The movie is titled Magalir Mattum, written and directed by Bramma, in his second venture after Kuttram Kadithal (2015). It also features Saranya, Urvashi, Bhanupriya, Nassar and Livingston playing pivotal roles. Produced by Suriya, the venture began production in July 2016. She was also signed by Sri Thenandal Films for another project together in September 2016, opposite to Vijay (actor), directed by Atlee[55][56][57] A few days after the shoot began, Jyothika opted out of the project and the makers signed Nithya Menen to replace her. No official announcement is made so far about the replacement.[58] In late February, Suriya confirmed Jyothika's new project, Naachiyaar by sharing the first look posters of the film.[59]

Her next film, scheduled to begin production in January 2018, is an untitled project with director Mani Ratnam.[60][61]

Telugu career

Jyothika's first Telugu entry as the lead female role was in the Telugu film Tagore, opposite Chiranjeevi, in which she played his wife. The film was screened at the International Indian Film Academy Awards, and was a commercial success.[27][28][36][37] Though she debuted with Chiranjeevi in Telugu, her first Telugu film is One Two Three, which was a trilingual film.[62] She acted along with Nagarjuna Akkineni in Mass, directed by debutant Raghava Lawrence.[63] The film was dubbed into Tamil with the title Veeran, which also became a blockbuster and Hindi as Meri Jung–One Man Army.

Her last film in Telugu was Shock, opposite to Ravi Teja. It was produced by Ram Gopal Varma.[64][65] She was considered to act in the Telugu film Stalin, opposite Chiranjeevi.[66] She was selected as the lead actress opposite Nagarjuna in Sri Ramadasu and Venkatsh in Lakshmi, but refused the offers due to her marriage preparations.[67] She was asked to act along with Venkatesh again in Adavari Matalaku Ardhalu Verule. Jyothika opted out after signing the contract due to her wedding arrangements and it later came to the hands of Trisha Krishnan.[68]

Her film Mozhi was released in Telugu under the title Maataranai Mounamidi, which won critical accolades for her performance and was a commercial success.[69]

Other work

Jyothika has endorsed several brands such as Idhayam oil and Paragon footwear in the early 2000s. She was also the brand ambassador for RmKV silk sarees and Wardrobe Hub in Chennai. Later, she appeared in adverts for Aircel and Nescafé along with her husband Suriya. She has also endorsed Comfort, Saravana Stores and Santoor Soap.[70]


Year Film Role Language Notes
1998 Doli Saja Ke Rakhna Pallavi Sinha Hindi
1999 Vaali Sona Tamil Filmfare Award for Best Female Debut – South[6]
Dinakaran Best Female Debut[16]
Poovellam Kettuppar Janaki "Kalyani" Kannan Tamil
Mugavaree Viji Tamil
2000 Kushi Jennifer (Jenny / Selvi) Tamil Filmfare Award for Best Actress - Tamil
Rhythm Aruna Karthikeyan Tamil
Snegithiye Vani "Vasu" Subramaniyam Tamil
Uyirile Kalanthathu Priya Mahalakshmi Tamil
Thenali Janaki Tamil
2001 Little John Vani Tamil/Hindi/English Trilingual Film
Dumm Dumm Dumm Ganga Veluthambi Tamil
Star Preethi Tamil
Poovellam Un Vasam Chella Tamil Nominated - Filmfare Award for Best Tamil Actress[71]
12B Jothika Tamil
2002 Raja Priya Tamil
One Two Three Narmadha Tamil/Telugu/Kannada Trilingual
Nagarahavu Keerthi
2003 Dhool Eshwari Tamil Nominated - Filmfare Award for Best Actress - Tamil
Priyamana Thozhi Nandhini Ashok Tamil
Kaaka Kaaka Maaya Anbuchelvan Tamil Nominated - Filmfare Award for Best Actress - Tamil
International Tamil Film Awards Special Jury For Best Actress[31]
Thirumalai Swetha Tamil
Tagore Nandini (Nandu) Telugu
Three Roses Pooja Tamil
2004 Arul Kanmani Arulkumaran Tamil
Perazhagan Priya / Shenbagam Tamil Dual Role
Tamil Nadu State Film Award for Best Actress[72]
Manmadhan Mythili Tamil
Mass Anjali Telugu
2005 Maayavi Actress Jothika (Jo) Tamil
Chandramukhi Ganga Senthilnathan /
Tamil Tamil Nadu State Film Award for Best Actress
Film Fans' Association Award For Best Actress[73][74]
2006 Saravana Sadhana Tamil
Shock Madhuri Telugu
Vikramarkudu Mrs. Vikram Singh Rathod Telugu Uncredited Role
June R June R. Tamil
Vettaiyadu Villaiyadu Aaradhana Tamil
Sillunu Oru Kaadhal Kunthavi Gautham Tamil
2007 Mozhi Archana Tamil Tamil Nadu State Film Award for Best Actress
Nominated, Filmfare Award for Best Actress - Tamil
Pachaikili Muthucharam Smitha (Geetha / Kalyani) Tamil
Manikanda Mahalakshmi (Maha) Tamil
Rakkilippattu Josephine Malayalam
2009 Seetha Kalyanam Nimisha Malayalam Nominated, Filmfare award for Best Actress - Malayalam
2015 36 Vayadhinile Vasanthi Thamizhselvan Tamil Filmfare Critics Award for Best Actress – Tamil
Nominated, Filmfare Award for Best Actress – Tamil
2017 Magalir Mattum Prabhavathi Tamil
2018 Naachiyaar Naachiyaar Tamil
Chekka Chivantha Vaanam Tamil Filming
Kaatrin Mozhi Tamil filming

Short films

Year Film Role Language Note
2006 Nimisham[75] Nimisha Malayalam Short film directed by Revathi S Varma
2008 Herova? Zerova? Herself Tamil


Jyothika awards and nominations
Awards won 12
Nominations 21

Tamil Nadu State Film Awards

International Tamil Film Awards

Kalaimamani Awards

  • 2005 – Kalaimamani Award Best Actress: Art - Film Industry

Film Fans' Association Awards

  • 2005 - Best Actress Award Tamil - Chandramukhi

Filmfare Awards South

Dinakaran Film Awards

  • 1999 Dinakaran Award For Best Newcomer: Vaali[16]

Behindwoods Gold Medal Awards

South Indian International Movie Awards

IIFA Utsavam Awards

Vijay Awards




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External links