Popular south Indian actors in Bollywood

Bollywood has picked up actors from the south Indian industry who ended up carving a niche for themselves in the Hindi cinema. Here’s a list of some of the actors who took Bollywood by storm.

Kamal Haasan

When it comes to south Indian male actors making it big in Bollywood, Kamal Haasan is arguably the one who started the whole trend – making his Bollywood debut in 1981 in the blockbuster hit Ek Duuje Ke Liye. He went on to star in other hit-making Bollywood films as well, including Sadma, Saagar and Chachi 420.


Dhanush made his Bollywood debut with the box office hit Raanjhanaa. He had also made national headlines with his viral hit song Why This Kolaveri Di. He is one of the few actors that have successfully straddled a career in regional cinema and Bollywood at the same time.



Rajinikanth is fondly called as “Thalaivar” by admirers. Often called the demi-God, he has blessed Bollywood by taking up Hindi projects like Geraftaar, Chaalbaaz, Hum and Bulandi.

Dulquer Salmaan

A rising star of Malayalam cinema, Dulquer Salmaan has made a lot of waves in Bollywood. The actor played the lead in the commercially successful Tamil film OK Kanmani, which was remade in Bollywood as OK Jaanu but did not find the same success. The actor has made his big Bollywood debut with Karwaan, in which he starred alongside popular actor Irrfan Khan.

R Madhavan

Madhavan is the one South Indian actor who has found consistent commercial success in the Hindi film industry. From the chocolate-boy in 2001 Rehna Hai Tere Dil Mein to the boxing coach in Saala Khadoos, Madhavan has proven his versatility. The actor’s Bollywood career rebounded after his breakaway from romance in the critically-acclaimed film 3 Idiots, in which he starred alongside superstar Aamir Khan. Madhavan has since acted in a number of commercially successful movies such as Tanu Weds Manu and Tanu Weds Manu 2.