UAE: Meet the five Malayalam actors who received the Golden Visa

Dubai - With the 10-year visa, the UAE aims to attract and retain the brightest expat talent

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By Team KT

Published: Fri 17 Sep 2021, 12:34 PM

Last updated: Tue 2 Nov 2021, 12:12 PM

From Mammootty to Mohanlal, some big names in South Indian cinema can now call the UAE their second home.

Since its launch in 2019, the UAE’s Golden Visa has been honouring the best of the best across all fields, including entertainment.

The 10-year visa aims to attract and retain the brightest expat talent in the UAE.

Here are five Malayalam actors who have received the UAE’s coveted visa.

1. Mammootty: Mammootty and Mohanlal were the first actors from the Malayalam film industry to be awarded the Golden Visa in August.

In a career spanning five decades, Mammootty has acted in more than 400 films, earning him the title of the ‘busiest actor in Mollywood’.

His major breakthrough came with with the film New Delhi (1987). In addition to Malayalam cinema, he has also acted in Telugu, Tamil, Kannada, Hindi and English films.

Mammootty has won several accolades, including three National Film Awards and seven Kerala State Film Awards.

2. Mohanlal: Another household name, Mohanlal’s career spans four decades and he has appeared in more than 300 films.

His role in Manjil Virinja Pookkal thrust him into the spotlight in 1980. His film Drishyam (2013) became the highest-grossing Malayalam film of all time.

Throughout his career, Mohanlal has received numerous awards, including five National Film Awards and nine Kerala State Film Awards.

3. Tovino Thomas: Thomas became the third Malayalam actor to receive the Golden Visa on August 30.

Known for his breakthrough roles in the Guppy (2016) and Mayanadi (2017), the actor and former model had told City Times in an interview that Dubai was like a second home to him.

In an Instagram post, Thomas thanked the UAE for the honour, writing: “Extremely grateful to receive the Golden Visa for the UAE. Truly honoured and humbled. Looking forward to a memorable association with this beautiful nation.”

4. Prithviraj: Prithviraj Sukumaran, the renowned Malayalam actor, director, producer and playback singer, received the Golden Visa in September.

He made his debut in 2002 with the critically-acclaimed film Nandanam. He has since gone on to act in more than 100 films across various languages, including Tamil and Telugu.

“Getting the GOLDEN VISA before joining GOLD, thank you,” he said in an Instagram post.

Gold is his upcoming film, the filming for which will start soon.

5. Dulquer Salmaan: The most recent to get the honour, Salmaan received the honour on Thursday, September 16, just a month after his father Mammootty.

The actor made his debut inSecond Show (2012), for which he received the Filmfare Award for Best Male Debut. He also starred in Bangalore Days (2014), which is among one of the highest-grossing Malayalam films.

“It’s a privilege and honour to receive my golden visa from HE Saood Abdul Aziz in the presence of Mr Yusuf Ali," Salmaan said. "It was wonderful to hear the future plans of the Abu Dhabi govt to promote film and production activities and encourage new talent locally and internationally.”

In addition, Dubai-based RJ Nyla Usha, who works at Hit 96.7, became the first Malayalam film actress to receive the Golden Visa earlier in September.

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