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Priyamani at South Indian International Movie Awards 2013.jpg
Priyamani at South Indian International Movie Awards 2013
Born Priya Vasudev Mani Iyer
Palakkad, Kerala, India
Nationality Indian
Occupation Actress and model
Years active 2003–present
Relatives Vidya Balan (cousin)

Priyamani is an Indian multilingual film actress who works in Kannada, Hindi, Tamil, Telugu and Malayalam Cinema. Priyamani gained widespread recognition for her role as village girl Muththazhagu in the Tamil film Paruthiveeran in 2007, receiving National Film Award for Best Actress and Tamil Nadu State Film Award for Best Actress for her performance. During the same year, she achieved commercial success in Telugu cinema with S. S. Rajamouli-directed Yamadonga.[1] In 2008, Priyamani received further critical acclaim for her role as Malavika in the Malayalam film Thirakkatha, written and directed by Ranjith.[1] The following year, she made her Kannada film debut in Raam which proved to be a commercial and critical success. Priyamani made her Hindi film debut through Mani Ratnam's bilingual in Tamil and Hindi, titled Raavan and Raavanan respectively. In 2012, her portrayal of conjoined twins in the multilingual film Chaarulatha, based on Thai film Alone, gained critical praise.

Early life[edit]

Priyamani was born and raised in Bangalore.[2] Priyamani was born to Vasudeva Mani Iyer and Latha Mani Iyer. She modelled for Kancheepuram silks, Erode silks and Lakshmi silks during her school years. When she was in the 12th Standard, Tamil Director, Bharathiraja introduced her to the film industry. Her father who hails from Palakkad from a Tamil Iyer family owns a plantation business, and her mother, former national badminton player, Lathamani, who hails from Thiruvananthapuram was a bank manager at Union bank. She has an elder brother, Vishakh who is in the plantation business with her father. while at school she actively participated in extracurricular activities and in sports.[3] She is the granddaughter of Carnatic vocalist Kamala Kailas.[4] Hindi film actress Vidya Balan is her cousin.[5][6]

She did her schooling at Sri Aurobindo Memorial School and attended Bishop Cotton Women’s College in J C Road.[2][7] After completing her schooling, Priyamani modeled for print advertisements. Priyamani is currently pursuing a degree in Bachelor of Arts in psychology.[8]


Early career[edit]

She started her film career with her debut film in Kollywood called Kangalal Kaithu Sei alongside actor Vaseegaran. The film was a flop at the box-office and she moved on to Malayalam and Telugu films owing to a lack of offers in Tamil films. She made her Telugu debut in Pellaina Kothalo with Jagapati Babu. Priyamani rose to fame with this film. Priyamani has made her Tamil comeback with the internationally acclaimed Tamil film Paruthiveeran helmed by Ameer Sultan, starring debutant Karthik Sivakumar. She has also signed on for another Tamil film in which she plays the lead role with actor Jeevan.. She then made her debut in the Malayalam film industry with Sathyam, but this film performed poorly at the box office.[4] She was signed by Tamil film director and cinematographer Balu Mahendra to act in the 2005 drama Adhu Oru Kana Kaalam. Before release, Babith said "Priyamani has come up with an excellent performance in the movie. Her performance would be widely acclaimed."[9] Adhu Oru Kana Kaalam was critically acclaimed but failed at the box office.[10] However, she won acclaim for her performance in the film.[11][12] In 2006, Priyamani starred in the Telugu film Pellaina Kothalo. The film was a super hit and got her three Telugu films.[4][13][14]


Priyamani during the filming of Rakta Charitra

Priyamani managed to prove her acting credentials and commercial appeal with 2007's Paruthiveeran, directed by Ameer Sultan, in which she was co-starred with debutant Karthi Sivakumar. A rural subject which told the story of a notorious young villager in Madurai, the film won critical acclaim and became a surprise box-office blockbuster.[15][16][17] Priyamani's performance was unanimously praised by the critics.[18][19] She went on to win the National Film Award,[20] followed by South Filmfare Award,[21] Tamil Nadu State Film Award and an award at the Osian's Cinefan Festival of Asian and Arab Cinema.[22]

She had another commercially successful film in Telugu, in the 2007 film Yamadonga[23][24][25] and in the Tamil film Malaikottai.[26][27][28] She again received critical acclaim in 2008 for her role in the Malayalam film Thirakkatha, in which she played a role based on the turbulent real-life story of late film actress Srividya.[29] She won another Filmfare Award for her performance.[30] In Tamil, she had a single release in 2008: Thotta.

In 2009 she had two Tamil releases, the masala film Arumugam and the remake of the Malayalam blockbuster Classmates,[31][32] titled Ninaithale Inikkum.[33] The former was a commercial failure:[34][35] Her Kannada debut film Raam was also a commercial success.[36][37][38][39] All three of her Telugu releases that year, however, (Drona, Mitrudu, Pravarakhyudu) did not do well at the box office.[40][41][42] In 2010 she acted in the satirical film Pranchiyettan & the Saint which became the longest-running Malayalam film since 2005.[43] She won a Filmfare nomination for her role as a Mumbai-based interior decorator in the film.

She was subsequently signed by director Mani Ratnam for his bilingual film, titled Raavanan and Raavan in Tamil and Hindi respectively.[44] Soon after, she was roped in by Bollywood director-producer Ram Gopal Varma for his trilingual film Rakht Charitra. Varma decided to cast her after seeing her National Award-winning performance in Paruthiveeran.[45] Her Kannada film Vishnuvardhana became a blockbuster hit[46][47] and later she starred in Anna Bond.[48] Although the film was poorly received by critics and featured on Rediff's "Most Disappointing Kannada Films of 2012" list,[49] it went on to become a successful venture at the box office.[50] She appeared in an item number in the Bollywood film Chennai Express.[51]

She has completed shooting for a Malayalam film, The True Story and the Telugu film, Chandee, in which she plays Ganga the granddaughter of a freedom fighter, who seeks revenge for the problems her family had to face.[52] She is currently shooting for the Kannada film Ambareesha.[53]

In 2014, she posed for a PETA ad campaign, asking the public to boycott zoos that feature caged tigers.[54]



Year Film Role Language Notes
2003 Ullam Kavitha Tamil
2003 Evare Atagaadu Priyamani Telugu
2004 Kangalal Kaidhu Sei Vidya Sadagoppan Tamil
2004 Satyam Sona Malayalam
2005 Adhu Oru Kana Kaalam Thulasi Tamil
2005 Otta Nanayam Reshma Malayalam
2006 Pellaina Kothalo Lakshmi Telugu
2006 Madhu Mercy Tamil
2007 Paruthi Veeran Muthazhagu Tamil National Film Award for Best Actress
Tamil Nadu State Film Award for Best Actress
Filmfare Award for Best Actress – Tamil
Vijay Award for Best Actress
2007 Toss Naina Telugu
2007 Yamadonga Maheswari Telugu
2007 Nava Vasantham Anjali Telugu
2007 Malaikottai Malar Tamil
2008 Thotta Nalina Tamil
2008 Hare Ram Anjali Telugu
2008 Thirakkatha Malavika Malayalam Filmfare Award for Best Actress – Malayalam
2008 King Telugu Special appearance
2009 Drona Indu Telugu
2009 Mitrudu Indhu Telugu
2009 Puthiya Mukham Anjana Malayalam
2009 Arumugam Yamini Tamil
2009 Ninaithale Inikkum Meera Tamil
2009 Pravarakhyudu Sailaja Telugu
2009 Raam Pooja Kannada
2010 Shambo Shiva Shambo Munimma Telugu
2010 Sadhyam Suhani Telugu
2010 Golimaar Pavithra Telugu
2010 Raavanan Venilla Tamil
2010 Raavan Jamuni Hindi
2010 Pranchiyettan and the Saint Padmashree Malayalam
2010 Eno Onthara Madhumathi Kannada
2010 Rakta Charitra II Bhawani Hindi
2010 Ragada Ashtalakshmi Telugu
2011 Raaj Mythili Telugu
2011 Vishnuvardhana Meera Kannada Sandalwood Star Award for Best Supporting Actress
2011 Kshetram Naga Penchalamma,
Sohini Aggarwal
2012 Ko Ko Cauvery Kannada
2012 Anna Bond Meera Kannada
2012 Grandmaster Deepthi Malayalam
2012 Chaarulatha Chaaru,
Kannada Filmfare Award for Best Actress – Kannada
SIIMA Award for Best Actress
Suvarna Film Award for Best Actress
2013 Lakshmi Priya Kannada
2013 Chennai Express Hindi Special appearance in item song
2013 Chandee Ganga/Chandee Telugu
2014 Alice: A True Story Alice/Uma Malayalam
2014 Njangalude Veettile Athidhikal Bhavana Malayalam
2014 Ambareesha Smitha Kannada [55]
2016 Silent Radio Malayalam
2016 Kathe Chitrakathe Nirdeshana Puttanna Geethanjali Kannada
2016 Angulika Telugu Filming[56]
2016 Vyuha Gayatri Kannada Filming[57]
2016 Kamini Kannada Shooting Completed(Delayed)
2016 Rangasani Kannada Filming
2016 Dana Kayonu Kannada Filming
2016 Kalpana - 2 Kannada Filming


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External links[edit]