Nayanthara entered the Tamil film industry with Ayya, playing Selvi – a naive girl madly in love, Nayanthara had earned the opportunity of starring as the love interest of none other than Superstar Rajnikanth himself, in her next release Chandramukhi where she had a limited screen space, with Jyothika taking over the movie with her act in the title role. And then followed a number of flicks where she was limited to song-dance routine and romancing the heroes.
2007 marked the first big transformation in Nayanthara’s career, as though she had donned glamorous roles earlier, she made a stunning turnaround in an ultra stylish and hot avatar in Billa, physically transforming herself as well, in stark contrast to her look of Ayya, Ghajini times. While she continued to sizzle in movies like Satyam, Aegan, Kuselan and Villu, she also proved she can be the lovable and adorable girl next door in Yaradi Nee Mohini. Acting alongside the biggies of South cinema including Superstar Rajnikanth,Vijay, Ajith, Suriya within less than 5 years of her career, the path to stardom wasn’t easy for Nayanthara, as she had always been targeted and subjected to controversies – be it her relationship with Simbu, or Prabhu Deva’s entry and exit from her life, the lesser she spoke on her personal life, the bigger it was projected on media, and at a point, the actress had even decided to bid good bye to films with Sri Rama Rajyam, but came over the losses and pains, and decided to return.
Nayanthara 2.0 began with Raja Rani, where her emotional and moving performance as Regina with different angles to her character, and its connect to her own life, finding love again, made her act an instant hit, and from then, it was no stopping her as she slowly ventured into films where she was the main lead, with female centric themes. Maya saw Nayanthara carrying the whole movie on her shoulders, giving shivers to the audience with her terrified act. And then came one of the special movies of her life, Naanum Rowdythaan which gave her another interesting character of a hearing impaired girl Kadambari and also a high in her personal life, with the arrival of Vignesh Shivn. With movies getting marketed with the presence of Nayan as the USP, she rose from a newbie to a target of controversies, to the Lady Superstar. Today, she commands a huge fan following and an unprecedented market value that was witnessed last year when she delivered back to back solo heroine flicks with Kolamaavu Kokila and Imaikkaa Nodigal, both featuring her in contrasting roles and turning superhits.
She has truly lived up to the tag of Lady Superstar, as she can alternate between playing a typical commercial film heroine as in Velaikkaran, or a powerful collector of Aramm, a heroine who could share equal screen space with the mass hero as we witnessed in Viswasam, where her performance and presence was as impactful as Ajith’s. She gets to do what she feels right on screen, be it the kind of roles or the level of glamour – she is the supreme as nothing can be imposed on her by anyone except herself. Negative criticisms can never break her, as she has only built a strong fort with the stones thrown at her thus far, and the way she has matured as a human was on display recently as well, with the way she dealt with the abuses hurled at her by a veteran.
And tomorrow, the Lady Superstar arrives on screens in dual avatars as the bold and beautiful Yamuna and the mysterious Bhavani, sporting a new look, in Airaa, which promises to scare you.
From Ayya to Airaa, the it has been quite a bumpy ride to top, but the milestones she has achieved with the recognition and quality films delivered, overshadow everything else that were attempted at pulling her down. Yet again, it looks like she’s got a quality, potential winner in hands, so get ready to witness the ultimate entertainer on screens, in Airaa!