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Nayantara (Malayalam: നയന് താര, Tamil: நயன்தாரா) (born Diana Mariam Kurien on November 18, 1984), Malayalee-born Indian actress, who has acted in many Malayalam, Tamil and Telugu movies. After several commercial successes such as Chandramukhi, Ghajini, Billa and Yaaradi Nee Mohini, Nayantara has established herself as one of the most promising, sought-after actresses of South India.
She did her schooling at various parts of India (Kerala and Tamil Nadu), as her father was an Air Force Official. She joined Balikamadom High School, Thiruvalla for +2, then joined Marthoma college in Thiruvalla for her Bachelor's degree (English Literature). Nayantara was born into a Orthodox Syrian Christian family, in Tiruvalla, Pathanamthitta District, Kerala.
Nayan Tara who was Diana Mariyam Kurien then was chosen 1st runner up in Best model Kerala 2003 which was conducted by Thrissur Advertising Club. This gave her a few opportunities in modelling for adverisements. While at college, she was spotted by director Satyan Anthikkad and cast opposite Jayaram in Mansinakkare. Afterwards, she co-starred alongside Mohanlal in Naatturajaavu and in Fazil's Vismayathumbathu. She was also cast with Mammootty in Thaskaraveeran (Dubbed into Tamil as Yuvaraj) and Raapakal.
She has also starred in several Tamil and Telugu movies. She was cast opposite Sarath Kumar in Ayya and with Rajnikanth in Chandramukhi. Her later films are Vallavan (Tamil) and Yogi (Telugu) flopped except for her Tamil film Ghajini. She regained her throne in Kollywood through the famous bikini shots in Billa in 2007. Her next movie Yaaradi Nee Mohini was a stupendous success. Nayantara's Tamil career followed with leading roles in films with Rajnikanth in Kuselan, Ajith Kumar in Aegan, Joseph Vijay in Villu and Vishal in Sathyam. She was paid Rs. 1Crore for Sathyam, Kuselan and Aegan becoming one of the highest paid actresses in South India.
Nayantara has contributed to several causes. While working with Rajini, who is known for giving away gifts such as chains to people on the sets to celebrate a movie's success or to reward his coworkers, she became intrigued by his kind gestures. Inspired by this, she also started to reward her co-workers in her other movies by giving away gifts such as cars and bicycles. During shoots Nayan always stays at the floor, unlike other stars.
Year Film Role Language Other notes
2003 Manassinakkare Gauri Malayalam
2004 Vismayathumbathu Reetha Mathews Malayalam
Natturajavu Katrina Malayalam
2005 Ayya Selvi Tamil
Chandramukhi Durga Tamil
Thaskara Veeran Thankamani Malayalam
Rappakal Gauri Malayalam
Ghajini Chitra Tamil
Sivakasi Nayanthara Tamil Special appearance
2006 Kalvanin Kadhali Haritha Tamil
Lakshmi Nandhini Telugu
Boss Anuradha Telugu
Vallavan Swapna Tamil
Thalaimagan Meghala Tamil
E Jyoti Tamil
2007 Yogi Nandini Telugu
Dubai Seenu Madhumathi Telugu
Sivaji: The Boss Guest Role Tamil Special appearance
Tulasi Vasundhara Ram Telugu
Billa Sasha Tamil Nominated: Filmfare Best Tamil Actress Award
2008 Yaaradi Nee Mohini Keerthi Tamil
Kuselan Nayantara Tamil
Telugu Made simultaneously in Telugu as Kathanayakudu
Sathyam Deivalakshmi Tamil
Telugu Made simultaneously in Telugu as Salute
Aegan Mallika Tamil
Twenty: 20 Malayalam Special appearance
2009 Villu Jhanvi Tamil
Bodyguard Ammu Malayalam Filming
Aadhavan Tamil Filming
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