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Nithya Menen

Nithya Menen

Indian actress
Nithya Menen
The basics

Quick Facts

Intro Indian actress
Is Actor Singer
From India
Type Film, TV, Stage & Radio Music
Gender female
Birth 8 April 1987, Bangalore, Karnataka, India
Age: 33 years
The details


Nithya Menen is an Indian film actress and playback singer. She has acted in Kannada, Malayalam, Telugu and Tamil films. She won 2 Filmfare Awards for the Telugu films Gunde Jaari Gallanthayyinde and Malli Malli Idi Rani Roju.

Early life

Nithya Menen was born in Bangalore, Karnataka and studied journalism at the Manipal University. She once said in an interview that she never wished to become an actress but a journalist, as she was "an idealist", but felt journalism was "not what it used to be". She then decided to become a filmmaker as she could express her ideas "better through films", and enrolled for a course in cinematography at the FTII Pune. During the educational entrance examination, she met B. V. Nandini Reddy, who "brainwashed" and convinced her to take up acting. Nandini Reddy would later turn director and sign Nithya for the lead female role in her first project.


Menen appeared first on screen as a child artist when she was ten in the Indian English language film, The Monkey Who Knew Too Much (1998), playing the younger sister to Tabu's character. In 2006, she started her acting career as a lead actor with the Kannada film 7 O' Clock directed by Kannada's top cinematographer Santosh Rai Pataje. The 2008 off-beat film Aakasha Gopuram, directed by National Film Award-winning director K. P. Kumaran, marked her Malayalam debut, in which she was paired with Mohanlal. She was in the midst of her 12th class exams when she was offered the role, after Mohanlal had spotted her on the front cover of a tourism magazine, Stark World Kerala. Her performance was well received, with critics writing that she shows "sparkle in her debut venture" and "makes her entry in an impressive role", though the film, based on the Norwegian play The Master Builder, got mixed reviews and was a financial failure. She next made a come back into Kannada films with the super hit film Josh. She played a supporting role in the film, which received rave reviews, and became a commercial success as well, with her performance garnering her a nomination in the Best Supporting Actress category at the 57th Filmfare Awards South.

In 2011, her first release was Nandini Reddy's romantic comedy Ala Modalaindi, which was Nithya's maiden Telugu venture as well. The film opened to favourable reviews by critics and turned out to become a sleeper hit, while Nithya received critical praise for her performance. Idlebrain's Jeevi in his review cited that she "epitomized Nitya character with her fabulous performance", "looks beautiful in all kinds of dresses" and was "the best debut in recent years of Telugu cinema after Samantha in YMC", while another critic wrote that she was a "charming find" and "...quite the Genelia replacement that our cinema so badly needs right now." She eventually won the Nandi Award for Best Actress for her performance and received a nomination for Filmfare Award for Best Actress at the 59th Filmfare Awards South. Further more, she also sang two songs for the soundtrack album of the film, tuned by Kalyani Malik. Nandini Reddy, later, went on to describe Nithya as "the discovery of the decade". Following Ala Modalaindi, she starred in Santosh Sivan's historical fiction Urumi as part of an ensemble cast. She portrayed a Chirakkal princess named Bala, playing the love interest of Prabhu Deva's character, which gained positive remarks, with a Sify review claiming that she "looks pretty and is a scene stealer". Nithya quoted that much of her character was based on "Santosh's perception of who I am", with Sivan stating that he had written that role for her and that only she could play it.She received a nomination for Filmfare Award for Best Supporting Actress at the 59th Filmfare Awards South She next appeared in ad-filmmaker Jayendra's bilingual venture 180/Nootrenbadhu, made and released in Tamil and Telugu, in which she played a photo journalist named Vidhya. She described the character as "bubbly, full of life, nosey, wide-eyed and innocent in life" and to be similar to herself. Later the year, she was seen in Sibi Malayil's Violin in Malayalam and the Gautham Menon-produced Veppam in Tamil.

Her first 2012 release was the Telugu romance film Ishq with Nitin Reddy.She received the CineMAA Award for Best Actress(jury) while received best actress nomination at the same event and at the SIIMA Awards.She acted in Karmayogi, a Malayalam adaptation of Shakespeare's Hamlet. For the Kannada film Aidondla Aidu she had sung and also choreographed one of the songs, titled "Payasa". She was seen in two Malayalam projects, T. K. Rajeev Kumar's Thalsamayam Oru Penkutty, in which she portrayed a village woman whose daily life is filmed and broadcast as a reality show for a month, and Ustad Hotel directed by Anwar Rasheed.

In 2013, she starred in three Telugu films, Okkadine, Jabardasth and Gunde Jaari Gallanthayyinde and one Kannada movie Mynaa. She played a character with two shades in Gunde Jaari Gallanthayyinde and she dubbed for her as well as for the character of her co-star Isha Talwar.For this movie,she received her first Filmfare Award for Best Telugu Actress at the 61st Filmfare Awards South. In 2014, she made a cameo in the Malayalam movie Bangalore Days, which became the highest grosser of that year. Her Kannada film Mynaa which won the Filmfare Award for Best Film – Kannada in which she plays a character of a physically challenged girl, became a huge blockbuster hit completing 100 days in many centers across Karnataka and her performance was well praised by the critics. She has paired up with Sharwanand for the 2015 Telugu movie Malli Malli Idi Rani Roju.Her performance was well praised by the critics eventually receiving her Filmfare Critics Award for Best Actress South and receiving her second nomination at Filmfare. She did a minor role in the film S/O Satyamurthy, directed by Trivikram'. She appeared opposite Dulquer Salmaan in two films in 2015, 100 Days of Love, a romantic Malayalam film and OK Kanmani, bilingual film directed by Mani Ratnam'. Dulquer and Nithya's on-screen chemistry was praised in the reviews of both films.For OK Kanmani,she received her first Filmfare Award for Best Tamil Actress nomination.

Her upcoming release is K. S. Ravikumar's bilingual project titled Kotigobba 2.


As actress

Year Film Role Language Notes
2005 Seven O' Clock Anu Kannada
2008 Akasha Gopuram Hilda Varghese Malayalam
2009 Josh Meera Kannada
2009 Vellathooval Jiya Malayalam
2009 Kerala Cafe Nithya Malayalam
2009 Angel John Sofia Malayalam
2010 Apoorvaragam Nancy Malayalam
2010 Anwar Asna Malayalam
2011 Aidondla Aidu Gowri Kannada
2011 Ala Modalaindi Nithya Telugu
2011 Urumi Chirakkal Bala Malayalam
2011 180 Vidya Telugu
2011 Nootrenbadhu Tamil
2011 Violin Angel Malayalam
2011 Veppam Revathy Tamil
2011 Makaramanju Model Malayalam
2012 Ishq Priya Telugu dubbed into Hindi as Bhaigiri
2012 Thalsamayam Oru Penkutty Manjula Ayyapan Malayalam
2012 Karmayogi Moonumani Malayalam
2012 Ustad Hotel Shahana Malayalam
2012 Doctor Innocent aanu Anna Malayalam
2012 Bachelor Party Neethu Malayalam
2012 Poppins Ammu Malayalam
2013 Okkadine Shailaja Telugu
2013 Jabardasth Saraswati Telugu
2013 Myna Myna Kannada
2013 Gunde Jaari Gallanthayyinde Shravani Telugu
2014 Malini 22 Palayamkottai Malini Tamil dubbed into Telugu as Ghatana, but also known as Malini 22
2014 Bangalore Days Natasha Francis Malayalam
2015 Malli Malli Idi Rani Roju Nazira Telugu
2015 JK Enum Nanbanin Vaazhkai Nithya Tamil
2015 100 Days of Love Sheela Malayalam
2015 S/O Satyamurthy Valli Telugu
2015 Kanchana 2 Ganga Tamil
2015 O Kadhal Kanmani Tara Kalingarayar Tamil dubbed into Telugu as Ok Bangaram
2015 Rudramadevi Muktamba Telugu
2016 24 Priya Tamil dubbed into Telugu with the same name
2016 Rajadhi Raja Nithya Telugu
2016 Okka Ammayi Thappa Mango Telugu
2016 Mudinja Ivana Pudi Shubha Tamil
Kotigobba 2 Kannada
2016 Janatha Garage Anu Telugu
2016 Iru Mugan Aayushi Tamil
2017 Appavin MeesaiFilm has yet to be released Tamil Completed
2017 Vijay 61 Tamil Filming

As playback singer

Year Song Film Language Composer
2010 Payasa Aidondla Aidu Kannada Abhijit-Joe
2011 Edo Anukunte Ala Modalaindi Telugu
Kalyani Malik
Ammammo Ammo
2012 Oh Priya Priya Ishq Telugu Anoop Rubens
Payasam Poppins Malayalam Ratheesh Vegha
2013 Arere Arere Jabardasth Telugu S. Thaman
Doore Doore Neengi Natholi Oru Cheria Meenalla Malayalam Abhijith
Modala Maleyante (Duet) Myna Kannada Jassie Gift
Thu Hi Rey Gunde Jaari Gallanthayyinde Telugu Anoop Rubens
Hi my name is malini Malini 22 Palayamkottai Tamil Arvind & Shankar
Kanneer Thulilye (Duet)
Madharthamma (Immigrant Mix)
Hi my name is malini Malini 22 Telugu
Navve Kaluva (Duet)
Yennali (Immigrant Mix)
2015 Paalnilaa : Lets Do the Dandiya Rockstar (2015 film) Malayalam Prashant Pillai
2016 Laalijo 24 Telugu A. R. Rahman
Hrudayam Kannulatho 100daysofLove Govind Menon

Awards and Nominations

Year Award Category Film Result
2009 Filmfare Awards South Best Supporting Actress – Kannada Josh Nominated
2011 Filmfare Awards South Best Supporting Actress – Malayalam Urumi Nominated
Best Actress – Telugu Ala Modalaindi Nominated
Best Female Playback Singer – Telugu (for song "Ammammo Ammo") Nominated
Nandi Awards Best Actress Won
Hyderabad Times Film Awards Promising Newcomer Female Won
Ugadi Puraskar Awards Best Actress Won
Vijay Awards Best Actress Nootrenbandhu Nominated
2012 CineMAA Awards Best Actress (Jury) Ishq Won
2nd South Indian International Movie Awards Rising Star of South Indian Cinema (Female) - Won
2013 Filmfare Awards South Best Actress – Telugu Gunde Jaari Gallanthayyinde Won
3rd South Indian International Movie Awards Best Actress – Telugu Nominated
Vanitha Film Awards Best Pair (along with Dulquer Salmaan) Ustad Hotel Won
2014 Vijay Awards Best Actress Malini 22 Palayamkottai Nominated
2015 Filmfare Awards South Best Actress – Telugu Malli Malli Idi Rani Roju Nominated
Best Actress – Telugu (Critics) Won
5th South Indian International Movie Awards Best Actress – Telugu Nominated
1st IIFA Utsavam Awards Best Actress – Telugu Nominated
Filmfare Awards South Best Actress – Tamil OK Kanmani Nominated
5th South Indian International Movie Awards Best Actress – Tamil Nominated
Best Actress – Tamil (Critics) Won
Best Supporting Actress – Telugu Rudhramadevi Nominated
Best Supporting Actress – Tamil Kanchana 2 Nominated
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