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Kerala Kaumudi Online
Tuesday, 21 May 2024 8.39 AM IST

Forgotten heroine Meenakshi's return after 20 years

meenakshi-actress-back-in

It was in 2004 that director Vinayan tried yet another horror experiment with ‘Vellinakshatram’ which had a 22-year-old Prithviraj doing the protagonist role. Just a few days after the release, the movie was rated a box office success. People started thronging theaters and Vellinakshatram became the talk of the town. Along with the ensemble cast and the jump-scare moments, many eyes got fixated on the young dame Maria Margaret; the girl with chubby cheeks and radiant kohl-lined eyes, who played the heroine in the movie.

Maria adopted the name Meenakshi in the film milieu. After grabbing some interesting roles in South cinema, she also went by the name Sharmili. But among Malayalis, the actress came to be known as ‘Vellinakshatram’ heroine. Meenakshi's cameo in the song 'Ambalakara Thechikavil Pooram' from the Mammootty film 'Black' also turned a rave during the mid-2000 era.

But in her prime, shocking many admirers, Meenakshi left cinema without any prior notice and was totally in oblivion for the past 20 years. Occasionally, there would be some debates in Facebook groups about the whereabouts of the actress but none had any definite answers to offer.

And ending all the drama over her disappearance, Meenakshi appeared on Monday to give an interview to a Malayalam online channel (Jango Space) for the first time in 20 years.

Meenakshi:

Break from cinema:

I have no regrets in life. I took a break from cinema as I felt the need to give more importance to my family. I appreciate and am in awe of the artists who successfully manage both work and family. Even I was offered a role opposite Mammootty, but I denied it. I don’t even remember the name of the movie.

Taruni Sachdeva:

During the shoot of the movie, I don’t know how but we became a family. I was very close with Taruni’s mother and her manager Anju, who later turned up as my manager. After the shoot, all four of us used to spend time together in the room and talk for the whole night. One day, I received a call from Anju saying that Taruni and her mother met with an accident and said they were no more. I still believe that they went on a pilgrimage together in a faraway place. Anju was devastated and went through depression as Taruni’s mother was her best friend.

Meenakshi also hinted at a return to movies and was in high praise of Prithviraj who has now risen to stardom after making a modest start in films alongside her.

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TAGS: VELLINAKSHATRAM, MOVIE, KERALA, MEENAKSHI, TARUNI, HEROINE, MARIA, PRITHVIRAJ, 20 YEARS
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