Kanaka started her career as
the heroine in Karakattakaran -1989, a movie based on the
Tamil rural dance Karakattam, along with Tamil film stars
Ramarajan, Goundamani and Senthil. It was a blockbuster
movie which ran more than a year.
Kanaka acted in many Tamil movies, including Athisaya Piravi
, Periya karan, Periya Kudumbam and Samundi. She starred
with many major stars like Rajnikanth, Prabhu, Karthik,
Vijayakanth, Sarath Kumar, etc.
She also starred in a few Telugu and Malayalam movies with
major stars like Mammootty and Mohanlal. Her Malayalam
debut, Godfather, was an all-time hit in Kerala, and
ran for 434 days.