Sr NTR Full Profile

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Nandamuri Taraka Rama Rao (28 May 192 – 18 January 1996), popularly known as NTR, was an Indian actor, producer, director, editor and politician who served as Chief Minister of Andhra Pradesh for seven years over three terms.He is widely regarded as one of the best actors of Indian cinema. NTR received three National Film Awards for co-producing Thodu Dongalu (1954) and Seetharama Kalyanam (1960) under National Art Theater, Madras, and directing Varakatnam (1970), NTR has received the erstwhile Rashtrapati Awards for his performance(s) in the films Raju Peda (1954) and Lava Kusa (1963). He garnered the Nandi Award for Best Actor for Kodalu Diddina Kapuram in 1970, and the Inaugural Filmfare Award for Best Actor – Telugu in 1972 for Badi Panthulu.

NTR made his debut as an actor in a Telugu social film Mana Desam, directed by L. V. Prasad in 1949. He gained popularity in the 1950s when he became well known for his portrayals of Hindu deities, especially Krishna and Rama, roles which have made him a "messiah of the masses". He later became known for portraying antagonistic characters and Robin Hood-esque hero characters in films. In total, he starred in 300 films, and has become one of the most prominent figures in the history of Telugu cinema. He was voted "Greatest Indian Actor of All Time" in a CNN-IBN national poll conducted in 2013 on the occasion of the Centenary of Indian Cinema.

He starred in such films as Patala Bhairavi (1951), which premiered at the first India International Film Festival, held in Mumbai on 24 January 1952, Malliswari (1951), premiered at Asia Pacific Film Festival, the enduring classics Mayabazar (1957) and Nartanasala (1963), featured at Afro Asian film festival in Jakarta. All the four films were included in CNN-IBN's list of "Hundred greatest Indian films of all time".

He co-produced Ummadi Kutumbam, nominated by Film Federation of India as one of its entries to the 1968 Moscow Film Festival. Besides Telugu, he has also acted in a few Tamil films. Widely recognised for his portrayal of mythological characters, NTR was one of the leading method actors of Indian cinema, He was referred to in the media as Viswa Vikhyatha Nata Sarvabhouma. He was awarded the Padma Shri by the Government of India in 1968, recognizing his contribution to Indian cinema.

After his career in films, NTR entered politics. He founded the Telugu Desam Party (TDP) in 1982 and served three tumultuous terms as Chief Minister of Andhra Pradesh between 1983 and 1995. He was known as an advocate of Andhra Pradesh's distinct cultural identity, distinguishing it from the erstwhile Madras State with which it was often associated. At the national level, he was instrumental in the formation of the National Front, a coalition of non-Congress parties which governed India from 1989 until 1990.

Early life

N. T. Rama rao (NTR) was born on 28 May 192 in Nimmakuru, a small village in Gudivada taluk of Krishna District, which was a part of the erstwhile Madras Presidency of British India. He was born to a farming couple, Nandamuri Lakshmaih and Venkata Ramamma, but was given in adoption to his paternal uncle. He attended school at first in his village, and later in Vijayawada. After his matriculation in 1940, he studied at SRR & CVR college in Vijayawada and at the Andhra-Christian College in Guntur. In 1947, he joined the Madras Service Commission as a sub-registrar at Prathipadu of Guntur District, a much-coveted job that he nevertheless quit within three weeks to devote himself to acting. He developed a baritone singing voice as a young man.


Film career


NTR started his film career with a walk-on role as a policeman in Mana Desam (1949). Following this, he appeared in Palletoori Pilla, directed by B. A. Subba Rao. His first mythological film was in 1957, where he portrayed Krishna in the blockbuster film Maya Bazaar. He essayed the role of Krishna in 17 films, including some landmark films such as Sri Krishnarjuna Yudham (1962), the Tamil film Karnan (1964) and Daana Veera Soora Karna (1977). He was also Known for his portrayal of Lord Rama, essaying that role in films such as Lava Kusha (1963) and Shri Ramanjaneya Yuddham (1974) to name a few. He has also portrayed other characters from the Ramayana, such as Ravana in Bhookailas (1958) and Seetharama Kalyanam (1961) among others. He portrayed Lord Vishnu in films such as Sri Venkateswara Mahatyam (1960) among others and Lord Shiva in Dakshayagnam (1962). He has also enacted the roles of Mahabharatha characters, such as Bheeshma, Arjuna, Karna and Duryodhana.

Later in his career, he stopped playing the role of a prince in his commercial films and began to play roles of a poor yet heroic young man fighting against the existing system. These films appealed to the sentiments of the common man. Some of these films are Devudu Chesina Manushulu (1973), Adavi Ramudu (1977), Driver Ramudu (1979), Vetagadu (1979), Sardar Papa Rayudu (1980), Kondaveeti Simham (1981), Justice Chowdhary (1982) and Bobbili Puli (1982). He also portrayed fantasy roles, his notable film in that genre being Yamagola (1977). His film Lava Kusa, in which he starred as Rama, collected 10 million rupees in 1963. He directed and acted in the hagiographical film Shrimad Virat Veerabrahmendra Swami Charitra (1984). He also acted in films such as Brahmasri Viswamitra (1991) and Major Chandrakanth (1993). His last film was Srinatha Kavi Sarvabhowmudu, a biopic on the Telugu poet Srinatha, which released in 1993.

In the later half of his career, NTR became a screenwriter. Despite having no formal training in script writing, he authored several screenplays for his own movies as well as for other producers. He also produced many of his films as well as other actor's films through his film production house National Art Theater Private Limited, Madras and later Ramakrishna Studios, Hyderabad. He actively campaigned for the construction of a large number of cinemas through this production house. He was influential in designing and implementing a financial system that funded the production and distribution of movies. He was so dedicated to his profession that he would often learn new things in order to portray a particular character on-screen perfectly and realistically. At the age of 40, he learnt dance from the renowned Kuchipudi dancer Vempati Chinna Satyam for his role in the film Nartanasala (1963).


Personal life

In May 1943, at the age of 20, while still pursuing hi Intermediate, NTR married Basava Tarakam, the daughter of his maternal uncle. The couple had eight sons and four daughters.

His eldest son, Nandamuri Ramakrishna Sr., died in 1962, soon after NTR completed shooting of the film Dakshayagnam. NTR founded the film studio Ramakrishna Studios in Nacharam in his memory. His fourth son, Nandamuri Harikrishna, died in a tragic car accident on 29th August 2018, was a child actor-turned-politician elected to the Rajya Sabha, representing the TDP. Harikrishna's sons Nandamuri Kalyan Ram and Jr. NTR are also actors in the Telugu film industry (Tollywood), with the latter being one of the top actors in the industry today. His sixth son, Nandamuri Balakrishna is one of the leading actors in Tollywood from the mid-1980s. He also started his career as a child artist. Balakrishna has contested 2014 assembly elections as a TDP candidate. He won the Hindupur Assembly Constituency. His seventh son, Nandamuri Ramakrishna Jr. is a film producer. His third son, Nandamuri Saikrishna, who was a theatre owner, died in 2004 following diabetic complications. The other sons Jayakrishna and Mohanakrishna are noted cinematographers. Mohanakrishna's son Taraka Ratna is also a Tollywood actor.

NTR's second daughter, Daggubati Purandeswari has represented the Indian National Congress in the Lok Sabha and was a Union Minister. She shifted her allegiance to the Bharatiya Janata Party.

Basava Tarakam died of cancer in 1985. In her memory, NTR established the Basavatarakam Indo-American Cancer Hospital in Hyderabad in 1986. In 1993, NTR married Lakshmi Parvathi, a Telugu writer. She was the author of his 2-volume biography of NTR, published in 2004. The first volume, "Eduruleni Manishi" deals from his childhood to his entry into films. The second volume, "Telugu Tejam" deals with his political career.

Awards and honors

Civilian honor

1968 Padma Shri award from the Government of India

National Film Awards

1954 – Certificate of Merit for Best Feature Film in Telugu (producer — National Art Theater) for Thodu Dongalu
1960 – Certificate of Merit for Best Feature Film in Telugu (producer — National Art Theater) for Seetharama Kalyanam
1968 – National Film Award for Best Feature Film in Telugu (director- National Art Theater) for Varakatnam

Rashtrapati Awards

1954 – Best Acting for Raju Peda
1963 – Best Acting for Lava Kusa

Nandi Awards

1970 – Nandi Award for Best Actor for Kodalu Diddina Kapuram

Filmfare Awards South

1972  — Best Telugu Actor for Badi Panthulu

Other honors

1978 — Honorary Doctorate from Andhra University

Legacy


The NTR National Award is a national award in honour of NTR. It was instituted in 1996 by the Government of Andhra Pradesh to recognise notable film personalities for their lifetime achievements and contributions to the Indian film industry.
The NTR National Literary Award was instituted by the NTR Vignan Trust, as an annual award to recognise people for their lifetime achievements and contributions to Indian literature.
Dr. N.T.R. University of Health Sciences was established as University of Health Sciences by the government of Andhra Pradesh and was inaugurated on 9 April by N. T. Rama Rao, the then Chief Minister of Andhra Pradesh in the city of Vijayawada, Andhra Pradesh, India. It started functioning on 1 November 1986. After the death of Rama Rao, it was decided to rename the University after him, and this was carried out on 2 February 1998. The university celebrated its silver jubilee from 1–3 November 2011.



Death


NTR died of a heart attack on 18 January 1996 at his residence in Hyderabad, aged 72. He was cremated and his ashes were immersed at Srirangapatna by his second wife eight years later, in 2004.

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