Silk Smitha's story is truly a rags to riches story.
Silk Smitha’s real name was Vijayalakshmi, she was born on December 2, 1960.
Silk Smitha was born as Vijayalakshmi in a poor family, in Eluru, Andhra Pradesh. Due to financial problems in the family, she had to drop out of school. She was constantly prepositioned by men, which is why Vijayalakshmi’s parents married her off at a very young age. However, the ill-treatment from her husband and in-laws made Silk Smitha leave her husband’s home and move to Madras to live with her aunt.
Silk began her career as a touch-up girl and then got break in small character roles. Vinu Chakravathy, a director chanced up her and found that she had potential for bigger things. He renamed Vijayalakshmi as ‘Silk’.
In 1979, Silk Smitha got a role in a Malayalam film called ‘Inaye Thedi’; her sex appeal found her a lot of takers who wanted to star as a cabaret dancer or vamp in their films. In the same year Silk got her major role in a Tamil film called ‘Vandi Chakkaram’ and the movie was a superhit. The character that she played was called ‘Silk’, that is when ‘Silk Smitha’was born. Her sensous appeal and dusky skin fetched her roles as the seductress, the vamp or the cabaret dancer.
She became most men’s secret fantasy in the 80s as she flourished rapidly in Telugu, Tamil, Kannada and Malayalam cinema. Silk Smitha truly was the first red-hot item girl.
Silk Smitha would charge as much as Rs. 50000 per dance sequence and she would do two or even three sequences in a day. In less than 10 years of her entry, Silk Smitha had done 500 films which included A, B and C grade films.
However, there was much more to Silk Smitha than her sex appeal. She was a good actress too. Her performance in Alaigal Oivathillai (1981) where she played the role of a neglected wife who is hurt by her husband’s infidelity was greatly appreciated.
In Silk Smitha’s sequences you will find a sense of lingering sorrow. It’s almost as if there were two Silk Smithas there.
Layanam (1989) is one of the most famous adult films in India and it starred Silk Smitha in her sizzling best. The movie was dubbed in many languages across the country including in Hindi as Reshma ki Jawani, in 2002 six years after her death.
Silk Smitha had worked with top heroes like Shivaji Ganeshan, Rajnikanth, Kamal Hassan, Chiranjeevi and Mithun Chakraborthy.
Silk Smitha died at the age of 35 on September 23,1996 having committed suicide due to financial and personal problems.
A sad end to a beautiful woman indeed.