Rima Kallingal
CelebritiesMalayalam Celebrities

Rima Kallingal Biography

Rima Kallingal
Rima Kallingal Biography
Gender Female
Marital Status Married
Career Started In 2009
Number of Films 31
Education B.A in Journalism
Birth Place Thrissur, Kerala
Height (in Cms) 164.59 cms
Height (in Feet Inches) 5 feet 4 inches
Zodiac Sign Capricorn
Nationality Indian
Religion Atheism
Mother Tongue Malayalam
Lives In Kochi, Kerala
Date Of Birth Jan 19, 1984
Age 37 years


Rima Kallingal is one of the most popular new generation actresses in Malayalam. Rima is a trained dancer and model. Before venturing into acting she ran for the 2008 Miss Kerala beauty pageant and was the first runner-up. Her acting debut was in 2009 through Shyamaprasad’s Ritu. The biggest break in Rima’s career came with the 2012 superhit 22 Female Kottayam. Directed by Aashiq Abu (whom she married later), the movie was a path-breaking film in many aspects. It elevated her career to another level. She won the Kerala State Award for Best Actress of 2012, for her performance in Nidra and 22 Female Kottayam. She is one of the founding members of Women in Cinema Collective (WCC), the women's organization for the welfare of women workers of the Malayalam film industry. The actress also owns the dance institute Mamangam.

  • Rima Kallingal Early Life

    Rima Kallingal was born on January 19, 1984, in Thrissur. She has been fond of dance from a very young age and started practicing at the age of 3. After becoming  professional dancer, she performed at numerous national and international stages. She started her schooling at Stanes Anglo Indian Higher Secondary School in Coonoor. But, after fifth class, she was moved to Chinmaya Vidyalaya, Thrissur. Later she completed her BA in Journalism from the prestigious Christ University, Bangalore. She has also mastered the arts of Taekwondo, Chao, and Kalari. Though born into a Hindu family, Rima is an atheist and follower of Communist ideologies.

  • Rima Kallingal Family

    Rima Kallingal Family

    Aashiq Abu

    Rima was born on January 19, 1984, in Kallingal family. She married filmmaker Aashiq Abu on November 1, 2013. The entered in wedlock at low-key affair held in a register office which was attended only by close friends and family. Post marriage, both Rima and Aashiq, continues to work in films.

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  • Rima Kallingal Career

    Early Years

    Before entering into the film world, Rima started her career with the television. She was a participant on the dance reality show Thakadhimi, aired on Asianet. Later she entered into the Miss Kerala pageant of 2008 in which become the first runner-up, losing the crown to Shree Thulasi in a tie-breaker final. During the time, she was actively performing dance at various stages.

    Her first call for a movie came from director Lal Jose, who saw her on a magazine cover. He roped in her in the Tamil movie Mazhai Varappoguthu and she was to play the character of a goat herder. But the movie never materialized. Then came the offer that opened the doors for her into the cinema world. Shyamaprasad cast her as the lead in his 2009 movie Ritu which won over critics but failed at box office. Her character of Varsha John was also well received by the critics. She even received a nomination for the best actress at the Asianet Film Awards of 2009. After this, she was part of a number movies like Neelathamara (2009), Happy Husbands (2010), Best of Luck (2010) and City of God (2011), only the last one did bring any substantial change to her career. For her performance as Surya Prabha in City of God, she was nominated in the category of Best Actress and Filmfare, Vanitha and Asianet film awards. In 2011, she made a special appearance as herself in the Tamil movie Ko. And soon, she made her proper debut in Kollywood with Yuvan Yuvathi. But the movie was a dud. Back in Malayalam, she did about few more films but only Indian Rupee got her some attention. And her vivid performance in the film fetched her the Best Actress Award at Kerala Film Critics Award.

    Then came the most important year of her film career, 2012. Two movies in 2012 gave a complete makeover to her career. Siddharth Bharathan directed Nidra made her critics favorite but 22 Female Kottayam increased her popularity among both the critics and general audience. 22FK became the biggest hit of her career, so far. Both the movies were pathbreaking considering their subject and approach. For her performance in both the movies, she won the Kerala State Award for Best Actress.

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    Notable Films

    Later Years

    Post her big break with 22 Female Kottayam, she has been selective about the films she signed. But, however, most of the films didn’t have much scope for the performer in her. She even took a year-long break after her marriage with 22FK director Aashiq Abu in November 2013. The movies which caught the attraction of audience after 22FK were, Ayalum Njanum Thammil (2012), Zachariyayude Garbhinikal (2013), Ezhu Sundara Raathirkal (2013), Chirakondinja Kinavukal (2015) and Rani Padmini (2015). Her performance in these movies was well-received but only Ayalum Njanum Thammil was able to do some tricks at the cash counter. Similar was the case with her 2017 releases Kaadu Pukkunna Neram and Clint, which the actress took up after a year's break. Both the movies won her singular praise from the critics but only garnered lukewarm response at the theatres. The actress has bagged 2 promising movies for 2018; satirical flick Aabhasam which has her in the pivotal role alongside Suraj Venjaramoodu and Arabikadalinte Rani: The Metro Woman. 

    Other Roles within the Industry

    Rima Kallingal has been an active member of Malayalam film franchise. She is one of the founding members of members of Women in Cinema Collective (WCC), the  first ever women's organization in the Indian cinema for the welfare of women workers of the Malayalam film industry.

  • Rima Kallingal Awards

    Though she won a lot of nominations for her first film Ritu, the only award that came her way was the Best New face at Vanitha Film Awards. But that luck changed in her favor with 22FK. Including the Kerala State Award and Filmfare South for Best Actress, she won a total of 6 awards for her role of Tessa in the revenge drama 22 Female Kottayam. Here are other important awards the actress bagged.

    • Vanitha Film Awards, Best New Face, Ritu - Kerala Cafe - Neelathaamara, Won, 2010
    • Kerala Film Critics Award, Best Actress, Indian Rupee, Won, 2012
    • Kerala State Film Awards, Best Actress, 22 Female Kottayam & Nidra, Won, 2012
    • Asiavision Movie Awards, Best Actress, 22 Female Kottayam & Nidra, Won, 2013
    • Filmfare South, Best Actress - Malayalam, 22 Female Kottayam, Won, 2013
    • Vanitha Film Awards, Best Actress, 22 Female Kottayam, Won, 2013
    • SIIMA, Best Actress (Critic) - Malayalam, 22 Female Kottayam, Won, 2013
    • Indian Movie Awards (Qatar), Best Actress, 22 Female Kottayam, Won, 2013
  • Rima Kallingal Business

    In 2012, Rima along with her two close friends started their clothing label, named Soul Sisters. She now runs a dance institute, Mamangam, in Kochi.

  • Rima Kallingal Television

    Rima started her career with the television. She was a participant on the dance reality show Thakadhimi, aired on Asianet. But she was eliminated in the semi-finals. Later in 2013, she hosted a youth women reality show named Midukki on Mazhavil Manorama.

  • Rima Kallingal Education

    Rima started her schooling at Stanes Anglo Indian Higher Secondary School, Coonoor. After the fifth standard, she moved to Chinmaya Vidyalaya, Thrissur. where she completed her schooling. Later she completed her BA in Journalism from the prestigious Christ University, Bangalore. She has also mastered the arts of Taekwondo, Chao, and Kalari.

  • Rima Kallingal Trivia & Facts


    • Rima started to learn dancing at the age of 3.
    • Rima has also mastered the arts of Taekwondo, Chao, and Kalari.
    • Though born in a Hindu family, she later turned into atheism and began to live on the lines of Marxian and communist theories.
    • Married to director and producer Aashiq Abu.
    • Rima was the first runner-up at the Miss Kerala 2008 pageant.


    • Rima was a semi-finalist on the dance reality show Thakadhimi.
    • The first movie that came her way was a Lal Jose directed Tamil movie Mazhai Varappoguthu. But the project didn’t materialize.
    • She won 6 awards in total, including Kerala State and Filmfare South Award, for her role as Tessa in the 2012 revenge drama 22 Female Kottayam.
  • Rima Kallingal Social Service

    Rima and Aashiq Abu gave Rs. 10 lakhs for helping the cancer patient, at Ernakulam General Hospital. They also gave another Rs. 25000 for the day’s kitchen expense at the hospital. This was done in connection with their marriage, as both of them had decided to spend the wedding expense on humanitarian causes.

  • Rima Kallingal Controversies

    • Rima, along with Aahisq Abu, was vocally against the continuous incidents of ‘moral policing’ in the state, especially the Kozhikode Downtown cafe incident, which was the prime driving force behind the Kiss of Love protest. Rima made strong statements against the groups who were involved in the moral policing activities.
    • In March 2014, when former CM of Delhi, Sheila Dixit was appointed as the Governor of Kerala, Rima Kallingal put up an Fb post, which read, “Ha ha ha !!! All women journalists in Kerala ... Beware.. You will all have to get home by 6 pm of Sheila Dixit has her way!! :):)” This was connected to Mrs. Dixit’s comments on the rape cases in Delhi. This post of Rima created a lot of uproar at the time.
    • In February 2015, A news report came that Rima, Aashiq Abu, and Fahadh Faasil will be questioned regarding the cocaine case in the name of actor Shine Tom Chacko. Once, this report was published, many people tried to connect the star couples with the drug rackets. But, Rima and Aashiq refuted these reports and took the publication to court.
  • Rima Kallingal Social Profiles