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Asin Thottumkal

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Asin Thottumkal

Asin at the opening of the Landmark Store in Spencer Plaza, Chennai


Asin Thottumkal

October 26, 1985 (1985-10-26) (age 23)[1]

Kochi, Kerala, India



Years active

2001 - present

Official website

Asin Thottumkal (Malayalam: അസിന്തോട്ടുങ്കല്), (born October 26, 1985[1]) is an Indian film actress from the state of Kerala. She is currently considered to be one of the most popular actresses in the South Indian film industry.

Making her acting debut in Sathyan Anthikkad's Narendra Makan Jayakanthan Vaka (2001), Asin had her first commercial success with Amma Nanna O Tamila Ammayi in 2003, and won a Filmfare Award for the Best Telugu Actress for the film.

After a number of films, she received her second South Filmfare Award for Best Actress for her performance in her second Tamil film, Ghajini (2005). She played the lead female roles in hits, the thriller Ghajini (2005) and the action comedy Varalaru (2006). More recently, Asin made her début in Bollywood, with Ghajini, the remake of its Tamil namesake, subsequently winning the Filmfare Best Female Debut Award Award.



[edit] Early life and background

Asin was born into a Syro Malabar, Syrian Christian family in Kochi, Kerala. Her father, Joseph Thottumkal originally from Thodupuzha, managed several businesses and was considered a prominent entrepreneur before he stopped managing his businesses and decided to manage his daughter's acting career instead. Furthermore Asin's father accompanies her to all her foreign shoots. Her mother, Seline Thottumkal, remains a surgeon despite moving settlements from Cochin to Chennai to Mumbai to live with her daughter. Asin has quoted that her name "means pure and without blemish". She claims that "the 'A' in her name is from Sanskrit meaning "without", and ‘Sin’ from English".

[edit] Career

[edit] Early work, until 2004

Asin Thottumkal debuted in a supporting role in Sathyan Anthikkad's unsuccessful Malayalam film Narendran Makan Jayakanthan Vaka in 2001, at the age of 15. After taking a year out to pursue her education, Asin returned with her breakthrough film as an actress, Amma Nanna O Tamila Ammayi opposite Ravi Teja, portraying a Tamil girl in her first Telugu language film, which subsequently fetched her the Telugu Filmfare Award for Best Actress.[2] In the same year she won the Santosham Best Actress Award for her performance alongside Nagarjuna in her second Telugu film, Shivamani.[2] Her following two Telugu films, Lakshmi Narasimha and Gharshana, both portrayed Asin as the love interest for police officers, giving her two more solid hit films, cementing her place as a leading actress in the Telugu film industry.

Asin's first Tamil language film was M. Kumaran son of Mahalakshmi, in which she co-starred with Jayam Ravi. Asin reprised her role from her film Amma Nanna O Tamila Ammayi for the remake, which saw her portraying a Malayali girl instead of the Tamil girl in the original. The movie subsequently went on to become one of the biggest hits in Tamil cinema during 2004, introducing Asin to Tamil film industry.[3] After a brief return to Telugu films, to do Chakram, her first failure as a senior artiste, she appeared in Ullam Ketkumae.[4] The film, initially launched in 2002, was originally meant to be the launch for Asin as a lead actress, along with then-debutants Arya and Pooja Umashankar. The college love story, directed by Jeeva, was long-delayed but eventually became a successful venture at the box-office, creating wider opportunities for her and the rest of the lead cast.[5]

[edit] Breakthrough, 2005 - 2007

After the release of Ullam Ketkumae, Asin was cited as a leading heroine after signing films with four leading actors of the Tamil industry in Ghajini, Majaa, Sivakasi and Varalaru respectively.[6] The film which provided the breakthrough for Asin was Ghajini. The film, co-starring Surya and Nayantara and directed by A. R. Murugadoss, earned her the Tamil Filmfare Award for Best Actress. Her role was that of a vivacious young model named Kalpana. Sify.com praised her portrayal as "magical", descriving her character as a "lovable chatterbox", played with "sheer ability in the romantic interludes, the poignant and heartfelt scenes when she rescues minor girls from villains and her gory end are touching".[7] The following Diwali in 2005, Asin had two releases, Sivakasi and Majaa. Despite the latter becoming an average grosser, the former went on to be a successful venture at the box office, despite Asin's poorly etched out role.[8][9]

The following year, Asin opted for a less hectic schedule, becoming more choosy with her roles, rejecting several opportunities in the process. Her long-delayed venture, Varalaru opposite Ajith Kumar, became the biggest blockbuster of 2006 in Tamil cinema, after releasing for Diwali 2006. The film's hero-centric plot retreated Asin to the sidelines, but her role was well acclaimed by critics.[10] Asin kept intact with her popularity in Telugu films by appearing in Pawan Kalyan's Annavaram, another successful venture in which she had a poorly-etched out role.[11] In January 2007, Asin appeared opposite Ajith Kumar and Vijay in two different films, Aalwar and Pokkiri, with the latter becoming a super success, whilst Aalwar became a failure. The two projects which released on the same day, had been billed up as rival films due to the rivalry of the lead actors in the films. Whilst Asin's role in Aalwar was criticized, her performance in Pokkiri was lauded by critics.[12][13] Her final project of the year was opposite in Hari's Vel, which had a Diwali 2007 release, subsequently becoming her third successful film which released during the Diwali season in three years. The film saw Asin and Surya put apart their creative differences and appear alongside each other after Ghajini. Asin, who portrayed a TV anchor, was appreciated for her role in the film.[14]

[edit] Success, 2008 - present

Asin appeared in her first dual role in K. S. Ravikumar's magnum opus Dasavathaaram opposite Kamal Haasan, who portrayed ten roles. The film, which was under production since September 2006, became Asin's largest film till date. Despite being overshadowed by Haasan's ten roles, Asin's portrayal's in the film were praised as her "best-to-date" with one of her roles being that of a Vaishnavite in the 12th century; whilst the other character was a Brahmin girl from Chidambaram.[15] Dasavathaaram subsequently went on to become one of the biggest blockbusters in South Indian film history.[16] Since establishing herself as the leading actress in South India, Asin opted to move into Bollywood, to get nationwide fame. Her first film, Ghajini opposite Aamir Khan was the remake of her breakthrough film of the same name. Upon release, the film garnered positive reactions from critics and masses alike, with Asin being singled out for her "fabulous" portray. Noted critic, Taran Adarsh describes her Hindi debut as "fabulous" and that "to share the screen space with an actor of the stature of Aamir Khan and yet remain in your memory even after the show has ended is no cakewalk. She looks fresh and photogenic and acts her part brilliantly", giving Asin's performance a positive outlook.[17] Asin is committed to Vipul Shah's London Dreams alongside Salman Khan and Ajay Devgan, in which she plays a member of a five-troupe band.[18] Furthermore, Asin is committed to Bharat Bala's trilingual international project titled 19th Step made in English, Japanese and Tamil in which she co-stars along with Kamal Hassan and Tadanobu Asano.[19] In the project, Asin reportedly plays the role of an Indian Princess who falls in love with a Japanese Warrior who comes to ancient Tamilakam to learn the ancient south indian martial art of Kalaripayattu from a veteran.[20]

[edit] Filmography





Other Notes


Narendra Makan Jayakanthan Vaka




Amma Nanna O Tamila Ammayi



Winner, Filmfare Best Telugu Actress Award

Shivamani 9848022338



Winner, Santosham Best Actress Award


Lakshmi Narasimha






M. Kumaran son of Mahalakshmi







Ullam Ketkumae






Winner, Filmfare Best Tamil Actress Award



Seetha Lakshmi
























Kothai Radha,


Winner, ITFA Best Actress Award



Kalpana Shetty

Winner, Filmfare Best Hindi Debut Award

Winner, IIFA Best Debut Award

Winner, Star Screen Best Female Newcomer Award

Winner, Stardust Female Superstar of Tomorrow Award

Nominated, Filmfare Best Actress Award


London Dreams





The 19th Step





[edit] See also

Awards and achievements

Filmfare Awards

Preceded by


for Jayam

Best Actress (Telugu)

for Amma Nanna O Tamila Ammayi


Succeeded by

Trisha Krishnan

for Varsham

Preceded by


for Kaadhal

Best Actress (Tamil)

for Ghajini


Succeeded by


for Chithiram Pesuthadi

Preceded by

Deepika Padukone

for Om Shanti Om

Best Female Debut (Hindi)

for Ghajini


Succeeded by


[edit] References

1. ^ a b Rediff Entertainment Bureau (October 25, 2005). "Asin's 20th birthday plans". Rediff. http://ia.rediff.com/movies/2005/oct/25asin.htm. Retrieved on October 10 2007.

2. ^ a b Thottumkal, Asin (December 24, 2008). "Awards". AsinOnline.com. http://www.asinonline.com/awards.htm. Retrieved on December 24 2008.

3. ^ Radhakrishnan, Mathangi (October 15, 2004). "'M. Kumaran...' rules the Tamil box office". MusicIndiaOnline. http://www.musicindiaonline.com/n/i/tamil/903/. Retrieved on December 24 2008.

4. ^ Narasimhan, ML (December 30, 2005). "Dubbed films rule yet again". The Hindu. http://www.hindu.com/thehindu/fr/2005/12/30/stories/2005123002160100.htm. Retrieved on December 24 2008.

5. ^ Shivram, Prasanna (July 13, 2007). "Jeeva’s lyrical frames". The Hindu. http://www.thehindubusinessline.com/life/2007/07/13/stories/2007071350040200.htm. Retrieved on December 24 2008.

6. ^ Kamath, Sudhish (November 1, 2005). "Asin turns out to be the brightest sparkler this year". The Hindu. http://www.hindu.com/2005/11/01/stories/2005110117190200.htm. Retrieved on December 24 2008.

7. ^ "Ghajini". Sify. September 27, 2005. http://sify.com/movies/tamil/review.php?id=13952885&ctid=5&cid=2429. Retrieved on 2008-12-23.

8. ^ Rangarajan, Malathi (November 11, 2005). "With the formula intact". The Hindu. http://www.hindu.com/thehindu/fr/2005/11/11/stories/2005111100180200.htm. Retrieved on December 24 2008.

9. ^ Ashok Kumar, SR (November 4, 2005). "Where is the entertainment?". The Hindu. http://www.hindujobs.com/thehindu/fr/2005/11/04/stories/2005110402340200.htm. Retrieved on December 24 2008.

10. ^ Rangarajan, Malathi (October 27, 2006). "In the race, surely - Varalaaru". The Hindu. http://www.hindu.com/fr/2006/10/27/stories/2006102700060200.htm. Retrieved on December 24 2008.

11. ^ Vardhan, Adithya (January 2, 2007). "Annavaram is paisa vasool". Rediff. http://www.rediff.com/movies/2007/jan/02anna.htm. Retrieved on December 24 2008.

12. ^ Mohan, Piraba (January 14, 2007). "Aalwar: Ajith is the saving grace". Behindwoods. http://www.behindwoods.com/tamil-movie-articles/movies-05/aalwar-review.html. Retrieved on December 24 2008.

13. ^ Bhaskar, Shweta (January 15, 2007). "Pokkiri: Watch only for Vijay, Asin". Rediff. http://www.rediff.com/movies/2007/jan/15sspokkiri.htm. Retrieved on December 24 2008.

14. ^ Hari, TSV (Novemember 8, 2007). "Vel is slick and neat". Rediff. http://www.rediff.com/movies/2007/nov/08vel.htm. Retrieved on December 24 2008.

15. ^ Vijayasarathy, R. G. (June 13, 2008). "Dasavathaaram is spectacular". Rediff. http://www.rediff.com/movies/2008/jun/13dasa.htm. Retrieved on December 24 2008.

16. ^ "Kamalhassan’s new blockbuster hit is setting records worldwide". The Times. June 29, 2008. http://www.thetimes.co.za/Entertainment/Article.aspx?id=792296. Retrieved on December 24 2008.

17. ^ Adarsh, Taran (December 23, 2008). "Review: Ghajini has blockbuster written all over it". Sify. http://sify.com/movies/bollywood/review.php?id=14824058&ctid=5&cid=2425. Retrieved on December 23 2008.

18. ^ Jha, Subhash. K (December 10, 2008). "Asin to croon for London Dreams". NDTV. http://music.ndtv.com/story.asp?id=ENTEN20080075988. Retrieved on December 24 2008.

19. ^ galatta.com (August 27, 2008). "Asin's Upcoming Movies". asinonline.com. http://www.asinonline.com/upcomingmovies.htm. Retrieved on January 17 2009.

20. ^ IndiaGlitz (January 17, 2009). "Asin's encore with Kamal Hassan". IndiaGlitz. http://www.indiaglitz.com/channels/hindi/article/44351.html. Retrieved on January 17 20


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