Who is the number one actress in South India? Are Kollywood beauties gaining supremacy over actresses of other industries? Well, we know your curious mind is filled with all these questions! If you are a movie buff and believe in the number game of the movie world, then this article is sure to keep you hooked!
Read along to explore the list of Top 20 South Indian actress names with pictures! Also, find out some interesting information behind the popularity of these desi damsels!
List of 20 Most Popular South Indian Heroines with Pictures:
Here are the details of the 20 South Indian actresses who have gained massive popularity in not just their native places, but also across the country and the globe:
1. Rashmika Mandanna:
Rashmika Mandanna is showing her supremacy in both Tollywood and Kollywood industries. She is one of the highly paid actress in South India after delivering some super hit blockbusters like "Geetha Govindam" (Telugu), "Kirik Party" (Kannada), "Dear Comrade" (Telugu), "Sarileru Neekevvaru" (Telugu) etc. The media has sensationalized this beauty by calling her "Karnataka's Official Crush".
Rashmika is ready her to treat her fans to three new movies in Telugu, Tamil and Kannada. She is also roped in to play the female lead opposite Stylish Star Allu Arjun in the Telugu movie "Pushpa".
2. Samantha Ruth Prabhu:
Samantha Ruth Prabhu, now Samantha Akkineni is the uncrowned queen of South Indian film industry. She is one of the most sought-after actresses in the Telugu and Tamil industry.In fact, we believe that Samantha has transcended beyond the number game and her position will be unclaimed, atleast for a couple of years! Right from her first movie "Yem Maaya Chesave" opposite her now husband Naga Chaitanya, Samantha has delivered consistently good performances and even won four filmfare awards.
Fondly called "Sam" by her fans, Samantha also runs an NGO called Pratyusha Support, "Ekam", an early learning center and is also ready to launch her clothing line "Sa-aki".
Nayanthara is undoubtedly one of the most popular actresses in the South India. Infact, her fans and even the media have given the title "Lady Superstar", because of her acting prowess and the unique selection of movie scripts. She made her debut in 2003 in a Malayalam film and since then, there was no looking back for this beauty.
She has a long list of successful movies like "Chandramukhi" (2005), "Adhurs" (2010), "Raja Rani" (2013), "Naanum Rowdy Dhaan" (20150, "PuthiyaNiyamam" (2016) etc. Her performance in Bapu's "Sri Rama Rajyam" (2011) as Sita won her a Nandi Award and Filmfare Award for Best Telugu Actress.
4. Trisha Krishnan:
Trisha Krishnan is a Chennai-based model and actress who has made her mark in the Telugu and Tamil industry. She first appeared in the movie "Jodi" (1999) in a supporting role and later in 2002, she got her first break with "Mounam Pesayidhe". Trisha is a perfect combination of looks and talent. She made her entry into the Telugu film industry with the superhit movie "Varsham" (2004) opposite Prabhas and instantly rose to fame.
This damsel also earned many critic appreciations for her role "Janu" in the Tamil movie "'96". Currently, she has more than half a dozen films in her hand, which are all scheduled to release in the later part of 2020 and early 2021.
5. Keerthy Suresh:
Keerthy Suresh will be forever remembered for her role as the Great Savithri in "Mahanati" (Telugu, 2018). She started her career as a child artist and returned back to the industry in 2013 with the Malayalam movie "Geethanjali". Irrespective of how her movies fared, Keerthy's performances were always appreciated and highlighted by the critics.
Not many know that Keerthy is the daughter of Chennai-based producer G. Suresh Kumar and the yesteryear's actress Menaka. So, it's evident that acting is a part of a DNA!
6. Nithya Menen:
Nithya Menen is a South Indian actress who has a strong presence in almost all the dominant film industries like Telugu, Tamil, Kannada and Malayalam. This three-times Filmfare award winner kickstarted her acting career as a child artist in 1998 in an English film. In 2008, she made her re-entry as a lead actress in Akasha Gopuram and her 2011 superhit Telugu movie "Ala Modalaindhi" won her massive popularity.
Nitya is also a talented singer and was nominated for the best female playback singer "Ammammo Ammo" in "Ala Modalayindhi" movie. Apart from movies, she is also doing a few web series on OTT platforms.
7. Kajal Aggarwal:
Kajal Aggarwal is an established South Indian actress who has a dominance in Telugu and Tamil industries. She is known for her strikingly good looks and of course, her natural acting skills. Interestingly, the Mumbai-born beauty has made her entry into the movie industry through Bollywood in 2004, but did not manage to get a good break. It was her second Telugu film "Chandamama" that made her an instant sensation in Tollywood and from there, she made it to the A-lister club.
Kajal is also the first South Indian actress to have a wax statue at the Madame Tussauds in Singapore. Along with movies, this stunner is also a part of many endorsements for many big brands like Chennai Silks, Dabur etc.
8. Anushka Shetty:
Anushka Shetty is the Queen Bee of the South Indian Film industry. She is also one of the highest-paid actresses in Telugu and Tamil industries and even received many awards & accolades. Anushka made her debut in 2005 with "Super" a Telugu film with Nagarjuna in the lead role. This success was followed by many back-to-back blockbusters like "Vikramarkudu" (2006), "Lakshyam" (2007), "Singam" (2010) etc.
Her stellar performances in the movies – "Arundhati", "Bahubali" and "Bhagamathi" will be remembers forever by the audience. In fact, her fans and even the critics opine that no South Indian actress of today's times have her commanding screen presence and nature flair for acting!
9. Tamanna Bhatia:
Tamanna Bhatia is fondly called as "Milk Beauty" by her fans and admirers. This Punjabi Kudi has created a sensation in the South Indian film industry with her milky white skin and gorgeous features. She has delivered powerpacked performances in both Telugu and Tamil languages. She rose to fame after "Happy Days", a college-based movie in Telugu.
Some of her superhit films include "Ayan" (2009), "Devi" (2016), "100% Love" (2011), "Racha" (2012), "F2: Fun and Frustration" (2019). Although she played a short role in the movie "Syera Narsimha Reddy", she managed to create a big impact on the audience.
10. Rakul Preet Singh:
Rakul Preet Singh is a Delhi-based model, who created a stir in South Indian movie industry with her exceptionally fit body and killer looks. This long-legged beauty made her debut in a Kannada Film called "Gilli" (2009) and later entered the Telugu industry, where she got her much-awaited break. Even though she worked in just a few films from the start of her career, Rakul did manage to climb the success ladder very soon.
She currently has 2 Tamil films, 2 Hindi films and one Telugu film in her kitty. Apart from being a full-time actress, Rakul also runs 3 franchises of F45 Training centers.
11. Shriya Saran:
Shriya Saran is an established South India actress, who originally comes from Uttar Pradesh. Though she made her debut in 2001, her first commercial hit was in 2002 with the movie "Santosham". This success opened up plenty of opportunities in Telugu, Tamil, Malayalam and even Hindi film industries. Her role in the movie "Sivaji: The Boss" starring Rajinikanth was well-appreciated by critics and audience alike.
Apart form acting in Indian movies, Sriya also has a presence in American films which helped her gain international exposure. She won several awards including the Best Actress award for "Gautami Putra Satakarni" in 2017. Sriya is now married to her Russian boyfriend and is living overseas.
12. Sai Pallavi:
Sai Pallavi Senthamarai was born in Tamilnadu and comes from a family of trained classical dancers. She was introduced to the film industry as a child artist. However, it was her role as "Malar" in Premam(2014) that earned her massive popularity and even earned her a "Best Female Debut" award. This popular South Indian actress created a wave in the Telugu states with her role "Bhanumathi" in Sekhar Kammula's "Fidaa" (2017).
She is currently shooting for two Telugu films "Love Story" and "Viraata Parvam", which are scheduled for release early next year. Sai Pallavi also earned the credit of being recognized as "India's 30 under 30" by Forbe's magazine.
13. Raashi Khanna:
Raashi Khanna is a Delhi based model who appeared in a number of Telugu and Tamil movies. Although she made her Debut in Bollywood, it was her first Telugu film "Oohalu Gusagusalade" (2014) which gave her a big break. In the following years, she established her as one of the most sought-after actresses in South India with back to back successes like "Supreme", "Jai Lava Kusa", "Prati Roju Pandaga" etc.
Despite coming from a different regional background, Rashi is making it big in Telugu industry, firstly for her sweet looks and secondly, for her effortless acting style.
14. Nivetha Thomas:
Nivetha Thomas was born in Kerala, but her name and fame has gone beyond her home state. She is now one of the leading South Indian actresses who has established a position for herself in Telugu, Tamil and Malayalam movie industries. Nivetha made her entry to the film world as a child artist and continued to play supporting roles in Malayalam and Tamil movies. However, it was her Telugu debut in "Gentleman" opposite Nani which earned her several awards and critic appreciations.
She kept the graph stead high with back-to-back hits like "Ninnu Kori", "Juliet Lover of Idiot", "118", "Darbar" (Tamil) and the latest "V" with Nani again!
15. Nazriya Nazim:
Nazriya Nazim is unarguably one of the most good looking South India actress. Although she started her career as a television anchor, her beautiful smile and cute expressions landed her many meaty roles in big banner movies. Her first movie was in Malayalam opposite Nivin Pauly and it was her role as "Keerthana" in "Raja Rani" that made her an overnight sensation.
Nazriya got married to Fahadh Faasil, a Mallu actor and took a break from movies. However, she made a comeback with "Trance" in which Fahadh played the lead role.
16. Amala Paul:
Amala Paul is an established actress in Tamil, Malayalam and Telugu movies. She started her career as a model and bagged quite a few opportunities. However in her first few films, Amala's performances have gone unnoticed, even though the films fared well. It was in her 2010 film "Mynaa" did she taste success after her role was well appreciated by the audience and critics alike.
From 2011, Amala got into the elite list and was made a part of big projects like "Deiva Thirumagal", "Vettai", "Velaiyilla Pattathari", "Nayak", "Iddharammayalatho" etc.
17. Shruti Hassan:
Shruti Hassan is the daughter of India's biggest actor, Kamal Hassan and his ex-wife, Sarika. Though her entry to the film industry was easy, the high expectations everyone had on her made Shruti's career a tightrope walk. However, in no time she proved her worth and created an identity for herself, without making her father a part of it.
This leading South Indian actress was recognized for her roles in many commercially successful films like "Oh My Friend", "Gabbar Singh", "Sreemanthudu", "D-Day" etc. She is also an excellent singer and even formed her own rock band.
18. Rachita Ram:
Rachita Ram is a Kannada film actress and her original name is Bindhiya Ram. She started her acting career in a television soap opera and later made her film debut in 2013. Rachita tasted her first commercial success in 2018 with "Johnny Johnny Yes Papa" and then "Ayogya" which even won her the Best Actress-2018 award.
This Kannada dimple beauty is also a trained Bharatnatyam dancer. Currently, she has more than 10 films in her hand out of which one is a Telugu film called "Super Machi".
19. Hansika Motwani:
Hansika Motwani is a well-known figure in Telugu and Tamil industries. She has also made her presence felt in Hindi, Malayalam and Kannada movies with her charming looks. Hansika first got recognized in her Telugu debut movie "Desamuduru" after which she earned a huge fan following for her tender skin and fresh-as-a-dewdrop beauty.
She kick started her acting career as a child artist and then went on to becoming a full-time commercial actress. The list of her successful movies include, "Kantri", "Engeyum Kadhai", "OruKal Oru Kannadi" etc.
20. Parvathy Thiruvothu:
Parvathy Thiruvothu is a leading actress in down-south movie industries of Tamil, Kannada and Malayalam. She made in debut in Malayalam, her mother tongue and even won several awards for her performances. Her first Kannada film was "Milana" in which she was appreciated for being the right fit for the role. Parvathy is one talented artist for whom the success or failure of a movie did not really affect her career in a negative way.
She currently has three films in Malayalam, out of which two are in post-production stage and one is still in the Filming phase.
We hope you enjoyed reading about your favorite South Indian actress, along with her latest photos! If you think we have missed mentioning about any other top actress who has worked predominantly in the Souther film industry, then do let us know! We'd be happy to includer her details in this list!