Versatile Malayalam actor Kanakalatha is no more

The Malayalam actor Kanakalatha did some good roles in the 1980s and 90s that left an impact on audiences minds.

ByArjun Ramachandran

Published May 07, 2024 | 1:14 PM Updated May 07, 2024 | 2:01 PM


Popular Malayalam actor Kanakalatha, who did some memorable character roles, passed away at her residence in Thiruvananthapuram on Monday, 6 May.

Aged 63, she was suffering from Parkinson’s and dementia.

The actor was taken care of by her sister Vijayamma after she was diagnosed with sleeplessness and dementia in August 2022. She had been with her sister since 2021.

Kanakalatha was born in Kollam on 24 August 1969 to Parameshwaran Pillai and Chinnama in Kollam.

At the age of 22, she got married but was divorced 16 years later. She does not have children.

Her cremation will be held at 11 am on Tuesday, 7 May.

Also Read: Veteran Malayalam filmmaker Harikumar passes away

Film career

Kanakalatha acted in over 360 films in her four-decade-long career in different languages.

In Malayalam, Kanakalatha played important roles in Kannezhuthi Pottumthottu (1999), Varnapakittu (1997), Spadikam (1995), Kireedam (1989), Chillu (1982), Rajavinte Makan (1986), Priyam (2000), Ponthan Mada (1994).

Kanakalatha also acted in Tamil films.

She was part of amateur dramas in the early stage of her career. Later, she performed in professional theatre and even did major characters.

Further, Kanakalatha acted in several TV serials. She also dubbed for the movie Kariyilakkattu Pole (1986).

Versatile actor

Kanakalatha potrayed many memorable roles

Kanakalatha potrayed many memorable roles. (Supplied)

Kanakalatha shined in both comedy and serious roles. She was among the league of actors such as Sukumari, who could perform roles with multiple emotions with ease.

The actor did some good roles in the 1980s and 90s that left an impact in the minds of audiences.

Kanakalatha had good offers at that time and shared the screen with veteran actors like Jagathy Sreekumar.

Some of her recent films are Pookkalam, 3 Days and Idukki Blasters — all released in 2023.

She portrayed noted roles in Tamil films like Karpooramullai (1991), Unakkaga Piranthen (1992), and Unakkaga Piranthen (1992).

In all, she acted in around 12 Tamil films.

Kanakalatha couldn’t act in both movies and serials after she was diagnosed with dementia.

She was receiving financial aid from the Association of Malayalam Movie Artists (AMMA), ATMA, and Kerala Film Academy, which helped her with the medical treatment.

Homage paid

People from different streams of life paid tributes to Kanakalatha.

Kerala Chief Minister condoled the death saying it’s a huge loss to Malayalam cinema.

Malayalam actor Mammootty, in his Facebook post, condoled the death of Kanakalatha.

Mohanlal wrote on Facebook that Kanakalatha was a gifted actor.

He added that he had the opportunity to act with her in his movie Kireedam (1989).

Serial actor Shalu Kurian, on her Facebook handle, wrote that the loss of Kanakalatha was irreplaceable.

Dubbing artist Bhagyalakshmi told the media that Kanakalatha was an amazing actor but didn’t reach the heights an actor would reach.

Bhagyalakshmi also shared that she had a good relationship with the actor.

Malayalam director East Coast Vijayan, in his Facebook post, condoled the death of Kanakalatha.

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