Gopika Anil – Malayalam Television Actress of ‘Santhwanam’ fame

Gopika Anil is a popular actress of Malayalam small screen, best known for playing lead roles in Kabani and Santhwanam. Her younger sister Keerthana also appears in television series. Siblings started career as child artists and have appeared as child actors in a few more movies. They played Mohanlal’s daughters in Balettan. Gopika also completed B.A.M.S and is a qualified Ayurvedic doctor.

She marked her screen debut through Shivam (2002) as a child artist

Gopika Anil hails from Kozhikode and was born in 1995. She and Keerthana studied at West Hill St. Michael’s Girls’ High School and later at Providences. Gopika was fully active in cultural events since school days and has participated in different events like Oppana, group dance, drama etc. While studying Plus-2, she studied Chakyar Koottu and has also participated in state level competitions for 2 years.

Shivam (2002) marked her screen debut, where she played Biju Menon’s daughter. In fact the role was first meant for her younger sister. She was asked to call Biju Menon ‘father’, when he gets down from jeep in front of house. But the child who acted playing in courtyard didn’t move from the place as she was not willing to call anyone except her father, ‘Father’, and the role finally went to Gopika marking her screen debut.

She along with Keerthana appeared in Baletten as Mohanlal’s children. She was studying in class 4 and her younger sister in class 1, when they appeared in Balettan. She was later seen in Mayilattam, Akale, Bhoomiyude Avakashikal and a few more movies.

While studying at college, though she received many acting offers, her father wanted her to complete studies. In fact, he never informed his daughters about the offers they got. Gopika completed her Ayurveda studies from SDM Ayurvedic College, Karnataka. Keerthana is an M.Tech student at SRM, Chennai.  

Her sister was instrumental in her screen debut as a child artist and television actress

Her screen debut happened through the role, originally meant for her younger sister. Same is the case of her screen debut as an adult in small screen. She was planning to join PG studies and was at hometown, when her sister got an offer for television. When Keerthana sent her pis, a few of them were hers with Gopika. Casting team of ‘Kabani’ series liked her pics and offered her the first TV show. Though she was planning to write PG entrance exams, she didn’t want to miss opportunity to work with her sis and hence accepted the role.

Her lead role in Santhwanam is the most popular till now

She played the titular role in Zee Keralam’s Kabani, opposite Prem Jacob and her role got appreciated. However the series was brought down in 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic lockdown. She shot to fame with her second show, Santhwanam aired in Asianet. Her screen pairing with T. P. Sajin was well-appreciated.

Gopika Anil – Some interesting and less-known facts

1. She appeared as child artist in TV series – Mangalyaam (2003) and Ammathottil (2008–2009).

2. She appeared in a few devotional music videos like Muripala Gopala, Amme Kaithozham, Thamarakannan, Thaye Bhagavathi etc.

3. In Vesham movie, she played younger sister of Mammootty.

4. During shooting days of Balettan, Mohanlal used to lure her saying, he will gift him a horse if she acts well. She also believed megastar’s words that he has some horses at his home.

5. One day before the release of Balettan, the siblings took a bike ride with their father in the town and collected a few film posters, which are still in her collection.

6. She and Keerthana accompanied their father for his film chance, and Keerthana got the offer. But the role was meant for Gopika, marking her screen debut, though the role was small.

7. Many fan pages have been dedicated to the screen pair of Santhwanam, also known as ‘Shivanjali’, and ‘Kalippan and Kanthari’.


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A freelance writer and blogger by profession since October 2011, interested in writing over a wide range of topics. Hope you enjoy my writings. I belong to one of the beautiful places of the world, Kerala, nicknamed as 'God's own country'.

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