Sumalatha is an Indian film actress. Since her acting debut in 1979 at the age of 15, she has appeared in over 100 films across all major film industries. One among the most sought-after names in the South Indian film industry during the 1980`s, Sumalatha has won two Kerala Film Critics Awards and a Nandi Award for Best Actress for her performance in movies like Thoovanathumbikal (1987), Isabella (1988) and Shrutilayalu (1987). Early Life
Sumalatha was born in Chennai in Tamil Nadu and raised in Bethapudi in Andhra Pradesh. Personal Life
Sumalatha is married to Kannada actor turned politician Ambareesh. They have a son named Abhishek Gowda. Movie Career
Sumalatha began her acting career at the age of 15, with the Tamil film Thisai Maariya Paravaigal (1979) directed by S. Jagadeesan. The social satire won numerous awards including the Best New Face award for the actress that year. Sumalatha then formed a hit on-screen pair with Chiranjeevi with their Telugu films like Subhalekha
(1983) and Agni Gundam
(1984), all of which went on to make it big at the box office. Most of the actress` critically acclaimed work came in Malayalam, courtesy of films like Nirakkoottu (1985), New Delhi (1987), Thoovanathumbikal (1987), Isabella (1988) and Thazhvaram (1990).
Nirakkoottu (1985), became a critical and commercial success, raised Sumalatha`s stature as an actress and proved that she is not averse to doing unconventional roles in offbeat films. She underlined this fact yet again in 1987, through her performance in Thoovanathumbikal and New Delhi. Sumalatha`s performance in these movies earned her a Kerala Film Critics Award for Best Actress. In the same year, her Telugu films Shrutilayalu (1987) and Swayamkrushi
(1987) went on to become huge hits, with the Nandi Award for Best Actress for Shrutilayalu being the icing on the cake.
Sumalatha continued to reaffirm her versatility as an actress in the following year, with the acclaimed romantic drama Isabella (1988). She won her second Kerala Film Critics Award for Best Actress for essaying the role of a troubled woman anchoring a dysfunctional family while struggling to deal with her personal demons. The actress continued to give hits in Telugu like the comedy Donga Kullu (1988), which was later remade into Hindi film titled Yeh Tera Ghar Yeh Mera Ghar (1989). The 1990 revenge drama Thazhvaram (1990), was another high-point in the actress` career, where she starred opposite Mohaanlal
. Over the years, the film, along with Thoovanathumbikal, has attained cult classic status among the moviegoers in Kerala.
Following her marriage to her Avatara Purusha (1991) co-star Ambareesh, Sumalatha took a long break from acting in the 1990`s. Since her return to the silver screen, she has been part of films like the devotional bilingual Sri Manjunatha (2001), Kanchana Ganga (2004), Kandahar
(2010) and Bale Jodi
(2016). Her 2020 release includes India Vs England, directed by Nagathihalli Chandrashekhar.