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Heroine-centric Telugu films don't get made very often, and actresses usually have to make do with inconsequential, glam-doll roles.
But this year, there were three heroine-centric films -- Arundhati, Kalavaramaye Madilo and Katha -- which gave its heroines Anushka, Swati and Genelia an opportunity to showcase their talents.
We take a look at the most impressive actresses in Telugu cinema this year.
This tall and charming yoga trainer, who made her debut some years ago in Super, occupies the top slot in Telugu cinema. After delivering a power-packed performance as the traditional Jejamma in Arundhati, Anushka smoothly slipped into bikinis in Billa.
In Arundhati, Anushka had two roles and looks -- she played a period character as well as a contemporary one. Her role in battling the Aghora (played by Sonu Sood) has to be seen to be believed.
She will be seen next with Mahesh Babu in Trivikram's next.
The pretty Kajal Agrawal has become one of the most sought after heroines in the Telugu industry. She has had three releases this year, Magadheera, Ganesh and Arya 2.
As Princess Mitravinda, she was stunning in Magadheera. She was equally good in the role of a contemporary girl (Indu).
In Ganesh and Arya 2 too, she held her own against Ram and Allu Arjun.
The hot Ileana was back after a hiatus -- after Jalsa last year -- with Kick this summer. She looked breathtaking in the yoga scene.
It was followed by the disastrous Rechipo with Nitin later.
Her third film Saleem (with Vishnu) was her last release this year.
The Goan beauty has been around in the industry for only three years but she has done more than a dozen films already.
Film: Kalavaramaye Madilo
Swati has had only one Telugu release this year in Kalavaramaye Madilo, after charming audiences and bagging awards for her 2008 film, Ashta Chamma, directed by Indraganti Mohankrishna.
As the aspiring singer Shreya, who wants to sing for A R Rahman in Kalavaramaye Madilo, Swati churned out a heart-rending performance. Perhaps another award is in store for her. She sure has the gumption to sign author-backed roles.
Swati will be seen next with Tamil superstar Vikram in Selvaraghavan's new Tamil film, after having won enough appreciation for her debut Tamil film Subramaniyapuram.
In Drona, she stunned everyone by putting on a bikini, which she carried it off with panache.
In Mitrudu, she shared screen space with Balakrishna in a sentimental drama, while in Pravarakhyudu she starred opposite Jagapathi Babu in a mature love story. Given solid scripts and author-backed roles, Priyamani can surely make heads turn and win awards.