Priyamani was born to Vasudeva Mani Iyer and Latha Mani Iyer. Her father who hails from Palakkad from a Tamil Iyer family owns a plantation business, and her mother, former national badminton player, Lathamani, who hails from Thiruvananthapuram was a bank manager at Union bank. She has an elder brother, Vishakh who is in the plantation business with her father. When she was in the 12th Standard, Tamil Director; Bharathiraja introduced her to the film industry. Hindi film actress Vidya Balan is her cousin.
Priyamani is an Indian multilingual film actress who works in Kannada, Hindi, Tamil, Telugu and Malayalam Cinema. Priyamani gained widespread recognition for her role as village girl Muththazhagu in the Tamil film Paruthiveeran in 2007. During the same year, she achieved commercial success in Telugu cinema with S. S. Rajamouli-directed Yamadonga. She made her Kannada film debut in Raam which proved to be a commercial and critical success. Priyamani made her Hindi film debut through Mani Ratnam’s Raavanan. In 2009 she had two Tamil releases, the masala film Arumugam and the remake of the Malayalam blockbuster Classmates, titled Ninaithale Inikkum. All three of her Telugu releases in the year 2009, Drona, Mitrudu, Pravarakhyudu did not do well at the box office. In 2010 she acted in the satirical film Pranchiyettan & the Saint which became the longest-running Malayalam film since 2005. Her Kannada film Vishnuvardhana became a blockbuster hit and later she starred in Anna Bond. Her upcoming movies include Kalpana 2, dana Kaayonu, Anjatha Chandi, Priyatama Raave, Vyuha, Angulika, Pappa, Painting Life, Kadhal Mudichu. In 2014, she posed for a PETA ad campaign, asking the public to boycott zoos that feature caged tigers.