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Rima Kallingal is an Indian film actress, who predominantly appears in Malayalam cinema. After being named First Runner-up in the Miss Kerala 2008 contest, she went on to pursue a career in acting. She made her acting debut in the 2009 film Ritu and later appeared in Neelathaamara (2009) and continues to work in Malayalam films. She is one of the founding members of Women in Cinema Collective (WCC), the organization for women workers in the Malayalam film industry.[1]

Rima Kallingal
Rima Kallingal.jpg
Rima Kallingal at IFFK 2016
Born (1984-01-19) 19 January 1984 (age 35)
OccupationActress, television anchor, dancer
Years active2009–present
Spouse(s)Aashiq Abu (2013–present)



Born in 1984 Thrissur, Rima Kallingal began practising dancing when she was three years old.[2] A dancer by profession, she has been a part of a dance company called Nritarutya and has had performances on national and international stages. She studied in Stanes Anglo Indian Higher Secondary School, Coonoor up to Fifth grade.[3] She completed her schooling from Chinmaya Vidyalaya, Thrissur, passing out in 2001. She holds a bachelor's degree in journalism from Christ University, Bangalore.[4][5] She is also skilled in Taekwondo (Korean martial art), Chao (Manipuri martial art) and Kalari.[2]

She was a semi-finalist of the Asianet reality show Vodafone Thakadhimi. She moved to Bangalore to pursue a modelling career and later participated in the Miss Kerala beauty pageant, in which be she became the first runner-up, losing to Shree Thulasi in a tie-breaker.[6]

She was spotted by director Lal Jose on a magazine cover, who cast her for a goat herder role in a Tamil film Mazhai Varappoguthu.[7] The project didn't materialise, but she was offered the lead female character of Varsha by director Shyamaprasad for Ritu, which eventually marked her acting debut.[6] She was 25 when she acted in the film.[4]

In 2012, she acted in the film 22 Female Kottayam which became a big success,[4] commercially as well as critically.[8][9] She received praises[10] and won many awards for her portrayal of Tessa.[11] She also won the Kerala State Government award for Best Actress. After 22 Female Kottayam she told that she had made some mistakes in her career and stated "Yes, I have done a few films I never should have, but I am determined not to repeat those mistakes".[8]

In 2013, Rima turned television anchor with the Mazhavil Manorama show "Midukki".[12][13] Following which the Kerala Film Chamber imposed a ban on her which was revoked later.[14]

In 2014 she set up her own Dance institute Mamangam in Kochi, Kerala.

Personal lifeEdit

Rima married director Aashiq Abu on 1 November 2013, in a simple ceremony held in Kakkanad Registration office, Kochi. As part of the occasion, they donated Rs 1 million towards the welfare of poor cancer patients at the General Hospital, Ernakulam, and Rs 25,000 to meet a day's expense of the dietary kitchen at the hospital.[15][16][17][18]


Year Film Role Notes
2009 Ritu Varsha John Nominated—Asianet Award for Best Actress
Kerala Cafe Segment Mrityunjayam
Neelathaamara Shaarath Ammini
2010 Happy Husbands Diana
Best of Luck Diya
2011 City of God Surya Prabha Nominated—Filmfare Award for Best Actress – Malayalam
Nominated—Vanitha Film Award for Best Actress
Nominated—Asianet Award for Best Actress
Ko Herself Tamil film
Special appearance
Shankaranum Mohananum Jyotsna Mathew
Yuvan Yuvathi Nisha Tamil film
Sevenes Aravindan's sister
Doubles Cameo appearance
Indian Rupee Beena Kerala Film Critics Award For Best Actress
Nominated—Asianet Award for Best Actress
2012 Orkut Oru Ormakoot Crystal Falth Ritz
Unnam Jennifer
Nidra Ashwathy Kerala State Film Award for Best Actress
22 Female Kottayam Tessa Kurissuparambil Abraham Asiavision Movie Award for Best Actress (also for Nidra)
Filmfare Award for Best Actress
Kerala State Film Award for Best Actress
SIIMA Award for Best Actress (Critics)
Vanitha Film Award for Best Actress
Nominated—Asianet Award for Best Actress
Husbands in Goa Tina
Ayalum Njanum Thammil Diya
Bavuttiyude Namathil Noorjahan
2013 Kammath & Kammath Mahalakshmi
Natholi Oru Cheriya Meenalla Annie
August Club Savithri Nominated-3rd South Indian International Movie Awards for Best Actress
Zachariayude Garbhinikal Fathima
Escape from Uganda Shikha Samuel Nominated—Asianet Award for Best Actress
Ezhu Sundara Rathrikal Sini Alex Nominated—Asianet Award for Best Actress
2015 Chirakodinja Kinavukal Sumathi
Rani Padmini Rani
2017 Kaadu Pookkunna Neram
Clint Chinnamma
2018 Aabhaasam
2019 Virus Nurse Akhila also producer
Arabikkadalinte Rani: The Metro Woman P. K. Lathika Post Production
Joothan  TBA Filming


  • Arabian Jewellers
  • Parthas
  • A Geeripai Jewellery
  • UNICEF India
  • Geepas Customer Care


Year Program Role Channel Notes
2013 Midukki Host Mazhavil Manorama reality show
2009 Vodafone Thakadhimi contestant Asianet Dance reality show



  1. ^ "Kerala's Women in Cinema Collective registers as society, to fight for gender parity". The News Minute. 2 November 2017. Retrieved 14 January 2018.
  2. ^ a b Keerthy Ramachandran DC (20 October 2011). "Rima Kallingal: A bold and new face | Deccan Chronicle". Archived from the original on 19 October 2011. Retrieved 1 December 2013.
  3. ^
  4. ^ a b c "Playing by their own rules | Society". Times Crest. 20 July 2013. Retrieved 1 December 2013.
  5. ^ "Manorama Online | Picture Gallery | Campus | Rima Kallingal". Retrieved 1 December 2013.
  6. ^ a b
  7. ^ "Exclusive: Lal Jose's Tamil debut". Retrieved 1 December 2013.
  8. ^ a b P.K. Ajith Kumar (7 May 2012). "22 Female Kottayam's success has Rima on cloud nine". Chennai, India: The Hindu. Retrieved 1 December 2013.
  9. ^ Shiba Kurian, TNN 17 August 2012, 02.10PM IST (17 August 2012). "A proud moment for '22 Female Kottayam' crew – Times of India". Retrieved 1 December 2013.CS1 maint: Multiple names: authors list (link)
  10. ^ "'I feel totally excited about 22 Female Kottayam' – Movies". 17 April 2012. Retrieved 1 December 2013.
  11. ^ "Kochi Times Film Awards '13- The Times of India Photogallery". Retrieved 1 December 2013.
  12. ^ Sajini Sahadevan (8 November 2012). "Quest for the smartest woman". Chennai, India: The Hindu. Retrieved 1 December 2013.
  13. ^ "And now, Rima is banned – Malayalam Movie News". 16 March 2013. Retrieved 1 December 2013.
  14. ^ "KFC lifts ban on Rima". 25 April 2013. Retrieved 8 February 2016.
  15. ^
  16. ^
  17. ^
  18. ^ "Rima Kallingal and Aashiq Abu tie the knot – The Times of India". The Times of India.
  19. ^

External linksEdit