The Top Malayalam Actors of 2012
As the year proved, it was the performance that mattered in Malayalam cinema and not just the star status.
In 2012, there were several smashing performances that made viewers sit up and watch in awe. And most of them were not from the leading men.
Here is our pick of top five actors in Malayalam, during 2012.
Films: 22 Female Kottayam, Diamond Necklace
He was launched in 2002 by his father, director Fazil, as the lead actor in Kaiyethum Doorathu. He was forgotten for the next seven years until he made a well-accepted comeback with Kerala Cafe.
Things have been going great guns for Fahadh Faasil ever since, and the year saw him anointed as the most in-demand star in Malayalam cinema.
Image: Fahadh Faasil
Films: 22 Female Kottayam, Ayalum Njanum Thammil
"I never expected that this will happen to me. I am so excited about this comeback to Malayalam films," smiles Prathap, who made his debut as an actor more than 30 years ago in Malayalam cinema and has directed a few films that got a good response.
Image: Prathap Pothen
Films: Ordinary, Mayamohini, Run Baby Run, Ithra Maathram, Chettayees
Biju Menon discovered his funny bone quite recently. In Ordinary, his 'Palakkadan accent' had viewers in splits. Biju Menon's terrific comic timing helped the film become a blockbuster.
Biju was launched in Puthran in the early 1990s as a hero and he has played supporting roles, villains, and the occasional lead role in a dedicated manner.
Image: Biju Menon
Film: Ustad Hotel, Ardhanaari
Anwar Rasheed's Ustad Hotel had the inimitable Thilakan playing an old man running a biryani joint, who shared an amazing relationship with his grandson, a chef who was educated abroad.
In a style that no one can match, Thilakan unleashed sheer magic and the film went on to become a major hit.
Thilakan's role as the leader of a group of transsexuals in Ardhanaari was also noted. The ailing actor showed the industry what film organisations had denied viewers when they banned him from acting for some years.
The legendary actor passed away a few months after the release of Ustad Hotel.
Film: Second Show, Ustad Hotel, Theevram.
Mammootty's son could have chosen a high-profile project to make his debut. Instead, he went for a dark thriller, made by passionate newcomers. In the end, the effort paid off and Second Show marked the entry of a fantastic actor.
Dulquer Salmaan proved that the success of his maiden film was not a fluke with another hit, Ustad Hotel.
However his next venture, Theevram, turned out to be a disappointment.
Dulquer says that he is not in a hurry and that he chooses his roles as per his instincts. The young actor hopes to turn director some day.
Image: Dulquer Salmaan