Malani Fonseka was born in 1947 on April 30th. She is the most popular Sri Lankan film actress in the Sinhala Cinema. Though she is popular as Malani Fonseka, many of her fans are unaware of her full name. Her full name is Wanniarachchige Malini Senehelatha Fonseka. She was born in Kelaniya, Pethiyagoda close to the Kelaniya Rajamaha Viharaya.
Malani was a former parliament member of Sri Lanka. Due to her over 40 years of experience in the Sinhalese film industry, she is known as the Queen of the Sinhalese Cinema. Her carrier began with the ”Punchi Baba film which was released in 1968, produced by Tissa Liyanasooriya.
Malani won her first award in 1968 from the National State Festival for the ”Best Actress Award” and then she was able to win the ”Sarasaviya Best Actress Award” in 1980 for the ”Higana Kolla” film. Malani also won the ”Best Actress Award” for the ”Aradana” and ”Yasa Isuru” films in 1982 and 1983 accordingly. Due to her brilliant acting skills, she was named by CNN as one of Asia’s twenty-five greatest cinema actors of all time.
Malani Fonseka’s father was Gilbert Fonseka and mother was Seelawathi Fonseka. Gilbert Fonseka was a cleark of the Government Press and Seelawathi Fonseka was a housewife. They had thirteen children and Malani was the third child. Malani studied in St. John’s College in Nugegoda until the fifth grade and then moved to Gurukula Vidyalaya in Kelaniya as her family moved nearby to that college.
Malani entered to the acting field through stage dramas in 1963, her first stage drama was ” Norata Rata”. Her most famous and popular stage drama was ” Akal Vessa” and she was able to win the National Award for ”Best Stage Drama Actress for that. Malani Fonseka’s most popular films are, ”Nidiyahana”,
Malani’s elder brother who was not interested in the film industry was died in 2012 due to sudden stroke. However, her one of Sister Damayanthi Fonseka was acted in several Sinhala teledramas and Sinhala movies but did not able to achieve what Malani achieved in the field. After the end of 30 years civil war, in 2010 Malani Fonseka was appointed to the Sri Lanka Parliament from the National List candidate on behalf of the United People’s Freedom Alliance.