Srividya was born on 24 July 1953 at Chennai, Tamil Nadu, India to Tamil film comedian Krishnamurthy and Carnatic classical singer M. L. Vasanthakumari. She had a brother, Sankararaman. Her mother tongue is Tamil. Her father had to stop acting in the year when she was born because of a disease which affected his facial muscles. Her family fell into financial crisis. Her mother worked long hours to meet the family's financial needs. Srividya once reportedly said that her mother didn't even have time to breastfeed her. Srividya debuted in acting at a very early age. When her parent's marriage faced problems due to financial difficulties, Srividya's youth was blighted. She got a marriage proposal from a scientist based in the U.S., but the marriage did not materialize due to financial problems faced by her family.
Srividya launched her career as a child artist in the 1966 Tamil film Thiruvarutchelvar (1966) alongside legendary actor Sivaji Ganesan. Later she entered Malayalam films with a dance scene in Kumara Sambhavam (1969), directed by P.Subramanyan and in Telugu film Tata Manavadu (1972) directed by Dasari Narayana Rao. However, her first major role was that of a college student falling in love with her professor in the 1971 Tamil film Nootrukku Nooru, directed by K. Balachander. Her first film as heroine was Delhi to Madras (1972) in which she was paired opposite Jaishankar. In mid-1970s, she became busy in the Tamil film industry. She acted in films such as Velli Vizha, Sollathaan Ninaikkiren and Apoorva Raagangal, all directed by K. Balachander. She was Rajinikanth's first heroine in Apoorva Raagangal (1975).
She started acting in Malayalam in 1969. Her first movie was Chattambikkavala directed by N.Sankaran Nair, in which she acted as the heroine opposite to Sathyan. She gained public attention in Chenda, directed by A. Vincent. Among the south Indian language movies she acted in, the maximum number of movies was in Malayalam (1969 to 2003) - see full list here
Her role as Amba from the mythological story (adapted film) from the Mahabarath, Amba Ambika Ambalika 1976, has been appreciated. Source : https://www.abcmalayalam.net/1976/3783/amba-ambika-ambalika
Srividya was a playback singer as well. She first sang for films in the Tamil film Amaran and then for Malayalam film Ayalathe Sundari. She later sang in several films, such as Oru Painkilikkadha and Nakshathra tharattu.
She was an expert classical vocalist as well. She used to sing in functions such as the Soorya Festival.
Srividya acted in Apoorva Raagangal opposite Kamal Haasan which virtually changed her life. In the film she acted as lover of Kamal Haasan. She fell in love with Kamal Haasan during the making of the film. They had the support of their families, but they broke up. Their relationship was the inspiration of a Malayalam film Thirakkatha as well, released in 2008.
Later she fell in love with George Thomas, an assistant director in her Malayalam film Teekkanal. She married him on 9 January 1976 despite opposition from her family. As George wished, she was baptised before the marriage. She wanted to stay as a housewife, but had to return to acting, when George forced her to, citing financial issues. She soon realised that she made a wrong decision in marrying him. Her life became miserable and the marriage ended in divorce in 1980. After her divorce she continued acting in movies (mainly Malayalam). During this period she fell in love with film director Bharathan who made many films with her as the female lead. But they couldn't continue the relationship and eventually Bharathan married KPAC Lalitha. The divorce with George Thomas was followed by a prolonged legal battle to settle financial issues between the two. The case went up to the Supreme Court of India, where she won the final decision. After the divorce, she left Chennai and settled in Thiruvananthapuram.
In 2003, she underwent a biopsy test following physical problems and was tested positive for breast cancer. She underwent treatment for three years .Two months before her death on October 19, 2006, Ms. Srividya had executed a will and entrusted Mr. Ganesh Kumar, cine actor and MLA, to register a charitable society to ‘start a music and dance school for efficient students who could not get ample opportunities due to lack of money or to give away scholarship to such students to continue their studies and to extend financial assistance to deserving ailing artistes.’
“I am bequeathing all my properties except some payments mentioned elsewhere in this bill. An appropriate body with eminent persons, registered under Charitable Societies Act should be formed and the realised value of all my assets should be transferred as a nucleus fund,” she said in the will entrusting Mr. Ganesh Kumar to register the society.
She had also left Rs 5 lakh each to her brother’s children and Rs One lakh each to her servants in the will, executed on August 17, 2006.. In October 2006, she underwent chemotherapy, but cancer had already spread throughout her body. She died on 19 October 2006.Kerala State Television Awards2004:Best Actress : AvicharithumFilmfare Awards South1980: Filmfare Best Malayalam Actress Award- Puzha1981: Filmfare Best Malayalam Actress Award - Edavazhiyile poocha mindapoochaTamil Nadu State Film Awards1977 - Tamil Nadu State Film Special Award for Best Actress - Madhurageetham1992 - MGR AwardPenn (1991) - 1st episodeAmmathamburattiVasundhara Medicals(asianet)Omanathingal Pakshi(asianet)Swapnam (asianet)Avicharitham(asianet)Sthreehrudayam (Surya TV)Venalmazha (Surya TV )( opposite to actor Ratheesh)Srividya on IMDb