Tamil Actors: Top 9 Of The Best

tamil actors

You’re all set to go on a Tamil Nadu adventure, but besides “Vanakkam!” (that means “hello” in Tamil), you find yourself stuck in learning the language. You still have time, and the best thing you can do is watch the works of famous Tamil actors and turn the subtitles on! In this article, we will look deeper into the Tamil film industry, highlighting the top actors who made a mark and their contributions. Plus, I’ll guide you with handy Tamil words and phrases that will make it easier for you to adapt to the locals and their culture.

A Handy List Of The Most Remarkable Tamil Actors

You better grab some chips as you get set on exploring the Tamil film industry and the popular Tamil actors who dominated in terms of recognition and popularity:

Suriya Sivakumar

Also known as Suriya, this prominent Indian film actor, born on July 23, 1975, in Chennai, India, comes from a family of media personalities. His film career started in 1997 with his debut film “Nerukku Ner,” but it was his role in the 2001 film “Nandha” that marked a turning point in his acting career.

This Tamil actor got a lot of people’s attention when he did the 2003 feature film “Kaakha Kaakha.” It boosted his career as a leading actor in Tamil cinema, plus the film was a hit critically and commercially.

Kamal Haasan

Kamal Haasan, a film director, film producer, and playback singer born November 7, 1954, in Paramakudi, Tamil Nadu, has been spreading excellence in Tamil cinema for over five decades. He has appeared in more than 230 films in different Indian languages. He began as a child artist in the Tamil film “Kalathur Kannamma” in 1959. However, it was his role in the 1975 film “Apoorva Raagangal” that promoted him as a leading actor in Tamil cinema.

silhouette of a director behind a camera in a studio with lights set up


Born on December 12, 1950, in Bangalore, Karnataka, Rajinikanth is considered a living legend in Tamil cinema. This Indian actor made his acting debut in the Tamil film “Apoorva Raagangal” (1975) and gradually rose to superstardom.


This rising star in the Tamil film industry was born on February 17, 1985, in Singampuneri, Tamil Nadu. He began his acting career in the 2012 film “Marina.” He made a lasting impression in the comedy-drama “Ethir Neechal” in 2013, but his claim to fame was the 2013 film “Varuthapadatha Valibar Sangam.”

Ajith Kumar

Popularly known as “Thala Ajith,” he was born on May 1, 1971, in Hyderabad, India. This Indian actor is also a motor racing enthusiast, photographer, and philanthropist. His acting debut was in the 1992 film “Prema Pusthakam.” However, his portrayal of an anti-hero in the 1995 critically acclaimed film “Mankatha” established him as a leading actor in Tamil cinema.


Born on June 22, 1974, in Chennai, Tamil Nadu, this Tamil cinema actor debuted in the 1992 film “Naalaiya Theerpu.” He got his big break in Indian cinema in the 1996 film “Poove Unakkaga,” where he played the lead role. It was a hit in the tills and loved by the critics. His charming on-screen presence and relatable characters quickly made him a fan favorite.


Vikram, whose real name is Kennedy John Victor is a Tamil Nadu native, born on April 17, 1966. He is an actor dedicated to improving his craft. Despite beginning in the industry in the latter part of the 1980s, his passion was only rewarded with praise and approval when he played the role of a mentally unstable person in the 1999 breakthrough film “Sethu.” It led to more roles, building up a remarkable career in Hindi cinema. In 2005, he was given the National Award for Best Film Actor prestige for his role as a gravedigger in the 2005 film “Pithamagan.”


Silambarasan, often referred to as “Simbu,” was born on February 3, 1983, in Chennai, Tamil Nadu. He was a child actor who debuted in the 1984 film “Uravai Kaatha Kili.” He later transitioned into a leading actor and gained recognition with his role in the 2002 film “Kadhal Azhivathillai.”


Born on July 28, 1983, in Chennai, Tamil Nadu, Dhanush is a multi-talented actor, producer, music composer, and playback singer. He has been in the film industry since the early 2000s but gained widespread recognition with the 2011 film “Aadukalam.” His portrayal of a rooster fighter earned him praises and critical acclaim, and he was rewarded with the National Film Award for Best Actor.

popcorn, clapper, and cinema tickets

Basic Tamil Words Related To Acting And Media

Here are some Tamil words and phrases you can go through as you watch the works of the leading actors who made a mark in the Tamil movie industry:

EnglishTamil ScriptPronunciation
Soundtrackஇசை வாய்ப்புIsai Vaayppu

Discover More Tamil Words With Ling

So, you’ve already taken the first step of learning Tamil through the works of these best actors with numerous awards to their names. Don’t stop there; aside from several films from the Tamil industry to catch, there’s a goldmine of Tamil vocabulary waiting for you to explore.

To ensure you won’t lose the zest of the need and passion to learn more about the language, let me introduce you to the Ling app. It’s your handy companion towards becoming more fluent in Tamil and many other languages. Plus, it makes the process fun and something you’d look forward to every day to learn more. Make sure to check it out and install Ling from the Play Store (for Android) or the App Store (for iOS).

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