Jyothika Saravanan (née Jyothika Sadanah on 18 October 1977) popularly known only as Jyothika is an Indian actress who predominantly appears in Tamil films.[5] She also acted in a few Kannada, Malayalam, Telugu and Hindi films. She gained prominence for her performances in Kushi, Perazhagan, Chandramukhi and Mozhi, winning three Filmfare Awards and three Tamil Nadu State Film Awards. She is also a recipient of the Kalaimamani award.[6] Jyothika married co-actor Suriya in September 2006 after being engaged in a relationship for several years.[7] She made a comeback in the movie 36 Vayadhinile (2015), which got good appreciation from the critics, especially for her performance.[8][9]

Early and Personal life

Jyothika was born to Chander Sadanah, a film producer Seema Sadanah, in Mumbai, India. Actress Nagma is her half-sister. She completed her schooling in Learner's Academy, Mumbai. She later majored in Psychology at the Mithibai College in Mumbai. She also has a sister Roshini (born Radhika) and a brother Suraj, who is working as an assistant director for Priyadarshan.

Jyothika married actor Suriya on 11 September 2006,[10] with whom she was paired in seven films; Poovellam Kettuppar, Uyirile Kalanthathu, Kaakha Kaakha, Perazhagan, Maayavi, June R and Sillunu Oru Kaadhal. The couple have two children, daughter Diya (born 10 August 2007)[11] and son Dev (born 7 June 2010).[3]



She made her acting debut in the Hindi film Doli Saja Ke Rakhna directed by Priyadarshan, but it did not do well commercially. In a 2000 interview with India Today, Priyadarshan said that he "lapsed into depression" after the film flopped.[3]

Her first role was a cameo appearance in Vaali (1999). Later that year, she starred in Poovellam Kettuppar, in which she played the love interest of the protagonist, portrayed by her future husband Suriya. The success of the movie Kushi became a turning point in her career.[14][3] A string of successful films followed between 2000 and 2002, among them Mugavaree, Dum Dum Dum and Snegithiye. Her characters had equal importance as the hero.[3] She also acted with Kamal Haasan during this period, in the comedy film Thenali.[14] She was awarded the Filmfare Best Tamil Actress Award for her role in Kushi.[3][3][3] Her role in Rhythm though small, has been widely appreciated.[3] After the success of Kushi she was signed to play the female lead in Friends opposite to Vijay, but she was replaced by Devayani.[3] She collaborated with Mani Ratnam for the first time by appearing in his production house, Madras Talkies' romantic comedy Dumm Dumm Dumm alongside Madhavan. The film won positive acclaim and became a success not only in Tamil Nadu but also in Andhra with its dubbed version.[4][23] She also made an appearance in Kannada film industry opposite Upendra.[4] She had Dual role in this film.[4] The Tamil thriller film directed by Priyadarshan made in all south languages,[4][4]


In 2003, she starred in Dhool with Vikram, Kaakha Kaakha with Suriya, Thirumalai with Vijay, all of which did good business, Kaakha Kaakha in particular being one of the biggest hits of her career. She was listed amongst the Best Actress nominees in Filmfare Awards South for her roles in Dhool and Kaakha Kaakha. Dhool, Kaakha Kaakha and Thirumalai were amongst the top 10 films of the year and The Hindu wrote that she was "virtually the undisputed queen of Kollywood".[4] In 2004, she acted in a double role in the critically acclaimed Perazhagan opposite Suriya. In 2005, she acted in Manmadhan opposite Silambarasan.[4][4] She also performed the lead female role in Telugu film Tagore,Opposite to Chiranjeevi, which was screened at the International Indian Film Academy Awards, and was a commercial success.[4][5]

Her most successful film till date is the Rajinikanth starrer Chandramukhi 2005 in which she played the title role.[5] She won accolades for her performance in Chandramukhi including a Tamil Nadu State Film Awards.[6][5] She was also offered to act with Mohanlal in Udayon directed by Bhadran but she couldn't do it due to busy schedules in Tamil.[5] Her first release in 2006 was Saravana opposite to Silambarasan after Manmadhan.[5] Her role in June R was noticed before the release of the film.[5] Jyothika's performance is fine tuned and emotionally engaged.She has underplayed her emotions beautifully.[5][5] Her films in 2006 include Vettaiyadu Villaiyadu, a crime-thriller film written and directed by Gautham Menon and Sillunu Oru Kaadhal opposite to Suriya. The former was dubbed into Hindi as The Smart Hunt.[5]


Her last films were Gautham Menon's Pachaikili Muthucharam and the critically acclaimed Mozhi, both in 2007. Her roles in these two films, as a negative character in the former (which she played for the first time) and as a deaf and mute in the latter earned her widespread appreciation. Among these Mozhi won her acclaim. Her performance took her very close to winning the National Film Award for Best Actress.[7] However, she lost the award by a narrow margin at the end.[8] In Pachaikili Muthucharam had a crucial role and pulls off a memorable performance.[5][42] Her Malayalam films Raakilipattu and Seetha Kalyanam were released in 2007 and 2009 respectively after languishing in development hell for years.[43][44] Jyothika later made a come back through Television ads.[46] In 2008, she appeared in a short film Herova? Zerova?.[47] The film was written and produced by her father–in–law Sivakumar and also starred Vijay, R. Madhavan and Suriya.

2015–present (comeback)

Jyothika made her comeback to Tamil Cinema with 36 Vayadhinile, a remake of the hit Malayalam flick How Old Are You? (film). The movie opened to very positive reviews, both from fans and critics.[48] She received critical acclaim for her performance in the movie as a middle-aged housewife, who sets out to stand on her own.She went to receive Filmfare Award for Best Actress - Critics and also received many nominations for best actress. The movie went on to become a commercial success at the box office as well. In the audio release function of 36 Vayadhinile, and also at the success meet of the movie, Jyothika credited Suriya, her husband, and some of her close friends as the major motivation for her comeback. Recently, in a Tamil TV show named Koffee with DD, Jyothika said that we can expect her in future as an artist, not as a heroine.

Other work

Jyothika has endorsed several brands like Idhayam oil and Paragon footwear in the past. She was also the brand ambassador for RmKV silk sarees and Wardrobe Hub in Chennai. Later she appeared in ads for Aircel and Nescafé along with her husband Suriya. She also appeared in commercials of Comfort (fabric softener) and Santoor Soap.[49]


1998Doli Saja Ke RakhnaPallavi SinhaHindi
1999VaaliSonaTamilFilmfare Award for Best Female Debut – South
1999Poovellam KettupparJanaki "Kalyani" KannanTamil
2000KushiJennifer (Jenni / Selvi)TamilFilmfare Award for Best Actress - Tamil
2000RhythmAruna KarthikeyanTamil
2000SnegithiyeVani "Vasu" SubramaniyamTamil
2000Uyirile KalanthathuPriya MahalakshmiTamil
2001Little JohnVaniTamil/Hindi/EnglishTrilingual Film
2001Dumm Dumm DummGanga VeluthambiTamil
2001Poovellam Un VasamChellaTamilNominated - Filmfare Award for Best Tamil Actress[50]
2002One Two ThreeNarmadhaTamil
2003DhoolEshwariTamilNominated - Filmfare Award for Best Actress - Tamil
2003Priyamana ThozhiNandhini AshokTamil
2003Kaaka KaakaMaaya AnbuchelvanTamilNominated - Filmfare Award for Best Actress - Tamil
2003TagoreNandini (Nandu)Telugu
2003Three RosesPoojaTamil
2004ArulKanmani ArulkumaranTamil
2004PerazhaganPriya / ShenbagamTamilDual Role Tamil Nadu State Film Award for Best Actress[51]
2005MaayaviActress Jothika (Jo)Tamil
2005ChandramukhiGanga Senthilnathan /
TamilTamil Nadu State Film Award for Best Actress
2006June RJune R.Tamil
2006Vettaiyadu VillaiyaduAaradhanaTamil
2006Sillunu Oru KaadhalKunthavi GauthamTamil
2007MozhiArchanaTamilTamil Nadu State Film Award for Best Actress
Nominated, Filmfare Award for Best Tamil Actress
2007Pachaikili MuthucharamSmitha (Geetha / Kalyani)Tamil
2007ManikandaMahalakshmi (Maha)Tamil / Malayalam
2009Seetha KalyanamNimishaMalayalamNominated, Filmfare Award for Best Malayalam Actress
201536 VayadhinileVasanthi ThamizhselvanTamilFilmfare Critics Award for Best Actress South
Nominated, Filmfare Award for Best Actress – Tamil

Short films

2008Herova? Zerova?UnknownTamil


  • 2003 – Filmfare Award for Best Actress – Tamil – Poovellam Un Vasam
  • 2007 – Filmfare Award for Best Actress – Tamil – Mozhi
  • 2015 – Filmfare Award for Best Tamil Actress – Tamil – 36 Vayadhinile