In 2015, Trisha was asked if she would continue in films even after marriage.
“Will you dare to ask that question to a hero? I know you'll never do that,” Trisha shot back.
That was much before #MeToo happened and Trisha was making an important statement about the working pattern of the industry.
Five years later, Trisha proved again that she need not be a shadow of the superstars to survive.
Trisha, who had begun shooting for megastar Chiranjeevi's film Acharya, walked out of the project citing 'creative differences'.
Trisha's first project in the lead role was in Priyadarshan’s Lesa Lesa. But after the project got delayed, her first appearance in a lead role was Ameer's directorial debut Mounam Pesiyadhe in 2002. It was a soft character while the hero was presented as harsh and misogynistic.
Next year, she played a terminally ill woman in Manasellam. Like most Tamil actresses of her times, she was seen mostly playing the innocent, naive and dependent girl's role. With Ghilli, changes began to happen.
She got roles that portrayed characters taking own decisions and having a positive outlook. Jessi in Gautam Menon’s Vinnaithandi Vaaruvaya was an example, where we get to see a strong and ambitious girl. With Jessi, Trisha made a mark with a character who realises where to draw lines and where to compromise.
In 96, she reeled out a mature, class act – Janu was a role of a lifetime.
Meanwhile, she also ventured in Bollywood and Malayalam apart from Telugu and Tamil. She worked with Akshay Kumar, Chiranjeevi, Rajinikanth, Mahesh Babu, Prabhas, Venkatesh and Nivin Pauly.
Her latest movie Ram, a Jeethu Joseph directorial, starring Mohanlal in the lead, is proof that the 36-year old is undoubtedly one of the most sought after actresses of South India.
Trisha had many flops and courted many controversies. But she managed to be a self-made woman.
Lady superstar emerges
It was the time when actress Simran decided to get hitched. Fans desperately sought a replacement for Simran.
After Enakku 20 Unakku 18 released in 2003, movie buffs took note of the girl dancing in shorts. Trisha turned out to be mini-Simran and she was hailed as the 'lady superstar', until Nayanthara made a strong comeback.
Trisha was all set to be married to entrepreneur and film producer Varun Manian. Their engagement was in early 2015.
However, a few weeks later gossip mills began to work overtime and the talk was mostly about the couple’s split.
In May 2015, Trisha herself announced that the couple had split. It takes some grit for an actress to bring forth her personal matter to public domain and speak up what she stood for. Varun disapproved Trisha working in films after marriage and that led to calling off their engagement and wedding, some say.
Trisha, who has a long association with PETA (People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals), was abused online for her views on Jallikattu, a traditional sport in which a crowd seeks to tame a rampaging bull.
Jallikattu backers stormed a location where Trisha's movie was being shot forcing its cancellation. Trisha remained unfazed but she clarified via tweets that she had never spoken against the sport.
She blasted the vulgar comments on her social media page and did not give in to online bullying. The actress did not hesitate to ask if it was part of Tamil culture to disrespect women.
This is not the first time Trisha openly talked about backing out from a movie. Trisha had walked out of Vikram-starrer Saamy Square citing 'creative differences'.
"Due to creative differences, I have chosen to opt out of Saamy 2. Wishing the team good luck," she tweeted.
The filmmakers tried their best to retain Trisha in Saamy Square. They even approached the Tamil Film Producers Council to sort out the issue but the actress did not relent.
After the movie released, Trisha was applauded for backing out from the character offered to her, which Aishwarya Rajesh took over, had a few scenes.
Recently, actress Nayanthara was criticised for taking up cameo roles in superstar movies. She was part of Chiranjeevi-starrer Sye Raa Narasimhaa Reddy and in Darbar opposite Rajinikanth. Sadly, but had nothing much to do in terms of acting.
By backing off from such a big project starring Chiranjeevi, it's indeed a statement that a quality actress is making -– talented actresses need better-written roles.
While some Chiranjeevi fans are trolling her, it is definitely an actor's prerogative to accept or reject a role.
The teaser of Trisha's upcoming movie Raangi is proof that actions and stunts are no big deal for actresses like her.
And more than cosying up to fan groups, Trisha and Nayanthara need some solid roles even if that means saying no to industry bigwigs. That itself makes her a claimant for Lady superstar tag.