In Moments of reflection, I am amazed with the path my life had taken. Eight decades of trials and tribulations, agony and ecstasy reels through my mind. A career that I had never anticipated – rare and unique, laced with opportunity and challenge. It was a path that had transformed a psyche of simple farm hand into one in an ambience of Art.
The arduous trek, from my village to an incomplete schooling, the responsibilities of household chores as the youngest child, visits to the meadows stretching into the horizon. What was my destiny? My life was the answer. Hard work, commitment, sincerity and integrity – values that would never fail any individual.
I arrived at Madras, with a vague sense of anticipation, euphoria and hope, on the 8 th day of May, 1944 into the punch of cultural shock. It was not disappointing but a revelation. I was invariably presented with the right path at every step. Was it luck or determination? I surmise it is a combination of both.
I was accepted, encouraged and elevated in a developing world of Cinema. From time to time, I was offered roles that reflected the trend of those times – a folk lore hero, a social heart throb, a romantic Prince or a tortured soul driven into a drunken tragedy. There were over 250 films since 1940 – a good portion of them touching the hearts of the audience.
Every success vindicated my confidence and every challenge motivated me to face adversity with courage and determination. I had the great privilege in partnering the development of the Telugu Film Industry. The stakeholders reposed unflinching faith in me and offered me challenging roles without hesitation. Success gushed forth in abundance – fame and awards followed.
The world of Cinema has made me what I am today – a hero and, more importantly, an individual. Invitations from the Governments of the United States of America, Britain, France, Germany and Russia, as an ambassador of Indian Cinema exposed me to the world of different cultures. It had broadened my horizon and imparted a certain clarity of thought. I have a closely knit family – a noble wife, able children and affectionate grandchildren - all a source of joy. What else does one want?
Where are these gifts from? For some they were God's; for me they were a blessing of my foster mother – the silver screen. The industry nurtured me as a wide eyed teenager. It taught me discipline and the facts of life, both as an artiste and an individual. To her I owe a debt that I cannot repay.
I was invited in 1991 to Delhi to receive Dada Saheb Phalke Award. The imposing hall, in all its regalia, was adorned with several dignitaries. I climbed those steps to the dais with humility and respect to be greeted by the President of India. Those were poignant moments. A sense of gratitude pervaded my being – gratitude for my industry that had me facing the Nation, represented by its President.
The awards I had received earlier – Padmasri and Padmabhushan, Raghupathi Venkaiah Award and NTR National Film Award from Andhra Pradesh, Anna Award from the Madhya Pradesh, Honorary Doctorates from Universities and more were given to me as an Artiste. However, this Award was also for my contribution to the development of the Film Industry.
It was during these moments that a thought struck me. I had to pay obeisance to the industry. I should institute an Award as a token offering towards a debt of gratitude. I had similar feelings earlier. I had missed formal education which has left me longing for it. I, therefore, donated to establish ANR College, near my native place. Instituted scholarships in all South Indian Universities and Bombay University. I partnered in the production of value based films and built Annapurna Studios at the expenses of a personal fortune. I, however, had to honour my colleagues who had made outstanding individual contribution to the Movie Industry.
THE AKKINENI INTERNATIONAL FOUNDATION was established. It will take up activities to recognize and encourage those who excel in various arms of the Industry. It also will institute an Award for Excellence in dedicating one's life towards service to our medium.
This is the culmination of more than six decades of a career in eight decades of life. This adds up to fulfilling a promise, I made to my conscience. I sincerely hope that this Award will transcend a feeling that here is one whose heart and soul are with Cinema and with those who serve its cause.
Cinema is a prolific, pervasive and persuasive medium of mass entertainment. It is a cementing force in a world of stress and strife. It will live forever. The AKKINENI NAGESWARA RAO AWARD, I hope, will also live forever – celebrating Cinema with honesty and dignity. I, too, wish to live forever with my little deed – MY AWARD.
AKKINENI NAGESWARA RAO
Smt Anjali Profile
Smt. Anjali Devi was born and grew up in the beautiful seaside town of Peddapuram, in Kakinada on 25 th October, 1928. She started acting in stage plays at a tender age of eight years. It is ironic that male artists such as ANR, started their careers as a female and Anjali Devi as a male. Her first stage appearance was as 'LOHITASYA' the son of Raja Harichandra and their drama club was named 'Young Men's Happy Club'.
It was during these days that she met Sri. P Adinarayana Rao, who was later to be her husband, He was the member of their troupe and scripted the plays and composed music for them.
Her first recognition was in 1943 by Sir Arthur Hope, Governor, in the form of a gold medal and a citation, in appreciation of the play 'Street Singers', written by Adinarayana Rao
Anjali Devi was introduced to Cinema, by C. Pullaiah as Mohini, the heavenly beauty, in 'Golla Bhama'. The grateful heroine had worked in a box office hit and never looked back.
Then began a series of block busters and trend setters of those times - 'Bala Raju', 'Mahatma Udangar' (Tamil), 'Keelu Gurram', 'Srilakshmamma Katha', 'Swapna Sundari', 'Raksha Rekha', 'Ek The Raaja' (Hindi), etc.. She never looked back and went on to complete around 400 films as heroine in Telugu, Tamil and Hindi.
In 1950, the couple established their own production house. Their bilingual, 'Pardesi' had stalwarts working in the production. LV Prasad directed it, Adinarayana Rao composed music, Kamal Gosh was Director of photography and Akkineni Nageswara Rao and Anjali Devi played the lead roles. They also had the opportunity to introduce legendary actor Sivaji Ganesan.
Anjali Pictures employed the latest techniques of those times – with the help of Santha Ram, 'slow motion' was introduced to the South. Their productions were known for music with haunting melody. 'ANARKALI' and 'SWARNA SUNDARI', starring ANR, touched the hearts of audience and took Anjali Pictures to new heights.
The banner went on to produce 28 films in Telugu, Tamil and Hindi. One cannot forget musicals like 'RUNAANU BANDHAM, SATI SUMATHI, SATI SAKKU BAI, SWARNA MANJARI, MAHA KAVI KSHETRAYYA, and BHAKTA TUKARAM'. Anjali Pictures became a household name for Music and Period Films. 'Maha Kavi Kshetrayya' was awarded the Golden Nandi by the Government of Andhra Pradesh.
One cannot but remember Anjali Devi as Sita in 'Lava Kusa'. She won the Presidents Gold Medal as the best actress for this epic. She entered the collective consciousness of the people of Andhra Pradesh and Tamilnadu as Sita, the wife of Rama. Cart loads of people visited her and devotedly addressed her as 'Seethamma'. She felt it was Rama himself blessing her.
Fame and recognition followed. The Government of Andhra Pradesh honoured her with the Raghupathi Venkaiah Naidu Award, The Government of Tamilnadu with the titles, Natana Siromani, Kalai Selvi and the life time achievement Award, the Arignar Anna Award.
In recognition of her services, she was appointed as the life senate member of Sri Venkateswara University, Tirupathi, as Vice President of South Indian Film Chamber of Commerce, as President of Nadigar Sangam, Tamilnadu and as Director of AP Film development Corporation.
She is a proud mother of two sons who are leading professionals in America and a doting grandmother to two granddaughters and a grandson. One of her Granddaughters is an aspiring actress and an accomplished dancer.
Being true to the vagaries of life, she and her family faced severe financial losses in the making of a Hindi film. Life seemed hostile, lonely and unsympathetic. But then she found refuge in the teachings of Sri Sathya Sai Baba.
Hope revived slowly and surely. Courage and fortitude were the answers. The devotional film, 'Sati Sakkubhai' was started and revived her fortunes, followed by 'Baktha Tukaram'. They turned out be multi-lingual super hits. She found that miseries are like clouds – they will come, but then will also leave.
She is a proud colleague to legends such as MG Ramachandran, NT Rama Rao, Akkineni Nageswara Rao, Sivaji Ganesan and Jayalalithaa. Three of them had gone on to become Chief Ministers of their respective states.
She had a dream since 1943 to make a bio-film on Sri. Sathya Sai Baba. After great persistence, she was given permission to produce a tele-serial in name of 'Shirdi Sai Parthi Sai Divya Katha', in Telugu, Tamil, Hindi and English. It was well appreciated by the devotees of Sri. Sathya Sai Baba from all over the world.
Anjali Devi symbolized and participated as a key member of the golden era of South Indian Cinema. And therefore will be immortalized in its hitory.
2011/11/19 23:37:22 The Slumdog millionaire scores once again as A R Rahman will be presented with the Lifetime Achievement Award at the ensuing Dubai International Film Festival to be held from December 7 to 14.
Rahman is the youngest ever and the first musician to win this award. Amitabh Bachchan, Shah Rukh Khan, Yash Chopra and Subhash Ghai had received the award for their outstanding contribution to cinema in the past.
Jai Ho is going to get another feather to his colourful cap. (INN)
Soundarya was one of the top heroines in Tollywood before she was killed in an unfortunate air mishap. A cultural organization ‘Andhra Lalitha Kala Academy’ has instituted an award in memory of late Saundarya.
Sneha has been selected to receive the award for this year. The award would be presented to her at a function in Bellary shortly.
Nagarjuna says these three are real winners of Nandi award
Hero Akkienni Nagarjuna is extremely pleased with his Nandi award for his role in Sri Ramadasu. This is his third award. His first Nandi award was for the film 'Annamayya'. His second Nandi came for his role in Santosham'. Now, he bags it a third time for 'Sri Ramadasu'.
Nagarjuna is however quick to acknowledge that the recognition is due to the collective efforts of director of K Raghavendra Rao, writer J K Bharavi and music director Keeravani. He is surprised that none of them bagged the award.
Veteran actress Anjali Devi has been chosen for the prestigious ANR award for the year 2007.The veteran actress also produced some memorable films. Akkineni Venkat announced the news at Annapoorna studios in Hyderabad on Friday. Dev Anand was chosen for the award in 205 and Shabana Azmi in 2006.
The award carries a cash prize of four lakhs and a citation. Chief minister Y S Rajashekar Reddy will present the award at a function at Ravindra Bharathi on January 13.
The TDP chief Chandra Babu Naidu has said that his party would constitute the award in the name of late NT Rama Rao. The congress government has been dragging its feet in giving the award all these years. The congress government has cited lack of funds as the reason for not constituting the award on the name of late NT Rama Rao.
Chandra Babu announced this at the Mahanadu in Tirupathi. He said that the award would be given in two months time. He said that the party was setting up a corpus fund to give the award. All the well wishers of the party and fans of NT Rama Rao are expected to contribute to this fund. Actor Murali Mohan has contributed a sum of Rs. five lakhs as his contribution to the fund.
Veteran actress Shabana Azmi was Sunday conferred the Taj Enlighten Tareef Award for her outstanding contribution to cinema.
"Today, I am getting the award which has been received by so many distinguished luminaries before me, whose work I have really admired. I feel humble and thank you from the bottom of my heart," Shabana told reporters after receiving the award at the Cinemax Theatre here Sunday.
Brook Bond Taj Mahal in association with the Enlighten Film Society gave the award to Shabana.
From Sep 5, the Taj Enlighten Tareef Award ran a Shabana Azmi retrospective where some of her best works including "Ankur", "Ek Doctor Ki Maut", "Godmother", "Dharavi" and "Fire" were screened every Sunday at Cinemax Versova.
Earlier recipients of this award are director Mrinal Sen, screenplay writer and lyricist Javed Akhtar - Shabana's husband - and megastar Amitabh Bachchan, among others.
Salman Khan is happy after National Award win for 'Dabangg'!
Salman Khan and his family are happy over their home production Dabangg being honoured with a National Award for Best Popular Film.
The movie is one of the two Bollywood films to be feted at the 58th National Awards, announced on Thursday. The other film being Do Dooni Chaar, starring Rishi Kapoor and Neetu Singh, which won the award for Best Film In Hindi Language.
Expressing his happiness over Dabangg’s National Award win, Salman said: “Before getting any award, people had seen Dabangg and liked the movie too. That was the first award we got. Now the government has also given us an award.”
The film was produced by Salman’s brother Arbaaz Khan and directed by Abhinav Kashyap.
Salman’s dad Salim Khan, who is an illustrious scriptwriter of many popular Hindi films, said the entire family is ecstatic by the news of National Award.
“The news about the honour has yet to sink in. We are thrilled by the national recognition,” Salim Khan said.
Arbaaz has already announced his decision to make Dabangg 2. He plans to direct the sequel himself.
S.Janaki was presented by Gurudutt award at prasad labs on Monday evening . This Award was presented by Finance minister Mr.Rosaiah. Earler this award was given to the sager Chitra. Veteran sieges Ravu Balasaraswati,Rani(Old Devdas,Jayasimha films play back singer) also attended the function. This function was organised by senior producer RV Ramana Murthi.
The long time demand for giving Bharata Ratna award to master blaster Sachin Tendulkar seems to happening soon, with Prime Minister’s Office approving the Home Ministry recommendations in this regard. According to latest reports, Home Ministry has recommended adding sports category to confer this highest civilian award and it was approved by PMO. Hence, we may expect the Government to declare Bharata Ratna award to Sachin Tendulkar on the eve of our Independence Day.
Adoor Gopalakrishnan chosen for P S John Endowment award
2006/7/28 13:07:10 Renowned film Director Adoor Gopalakrishnan has been chosen for the Ernakulam Press Club's prestigious 'P S John Endowment Award' for 2005, for his contributions to the film industry.
V R Rajmohan, Secretary and Nijas Jewel, vice president, Ernakulam Press club, told a press meet that Adoor Gopalakrishnan played a big part in Malayalam films carving a niche for itself, internationally.
Dadasaheb Phalke award winner, Adoor had won several honours and recognition in the film industry, Rajmohan said.
Chief Minister, V S Achuthanandan, who had won the P S John award in 2004, will confer the award on Adoor at a function to be held here on August 4, he said.
The award carries a citation, memento and a cash prize.
Early winners of the award include late E M S Namboodiripad, Spices Board Chairman V J Kurien, long jumper Anju Bobby George, Chairman, Kottakkal Aryavaidyasala Dr P S Warrier, and former ISRO chairman K Kasturirangan.
The prestigious NT Ram Rao memorial national award instituted by the state government will be conferred on noted Hindi actress of yesteryear Waheeda Rehman. An announcement to this effect was made the government today. The award caries a cash prize of 5 lakhs, a medal and a citation.
Sivaji Ganesan, Dr Kannada Rajkumar, Ilayaraja, Ambarish, natasekhara Krishna are among the previous recipients of the award.
2006/10/20 15:50:47 The popular Dr KV Reddy Memorial Award for the year 2006 would be presented to Puri Jagannath. Yuva Kalavahini is giving the award every year to one successful director. Puri Jagannath who started his career with 'Badri' turned a sensational director with the stupendous success of 'Pokiri' as it rewrote the 75-year-old history of the Telugu Cinema. A committee consisting of Vasiraju Prakasam, GS Vardachari, Sarat Jyotsna Rani, PV Rammohana Naidu, YK Nageswara Rao had selected Puri Jagannath for this award. The award would be presented to Puri Jagannath at a special function on October 29. The melodious songs from the movies of KV Reddy and the hit songs of Puri Jagannath's films would be screened on the occasion, said Yuva Kalavahini president YK Nageswara Rao.
Noted Activist and Gandhian Anna Hazare has rejected an award that carries a cash prize of Rs. One core and a Gold medal. The Delhi based IIPM had decided to confer the Rabindranath Tagore Peace Prize for the year 2010.
Anna Hazare however did not disclose the reason for rejecting the award.
2006/11/20 17:58:11 The prestigious Raja-Lakshmi Foundation award for the year 2006 was presented to noted playback singer SP Balasubrahmanyam in Visakhapatnam on November 19. Sadguru Kandukuru Sivananda Murthy handed over the award to SP Balasubrahmanyam. Raja-Lakshmi Foundation trustee PV Ramanayya Raja, Sirivennela Sitaramasastry, LV Subrahmanyam and others arttended the function. Rs 1 lakh cash, a commendation certificate and a memento were presented as part of the award. SP Balasubrahmanyam says, 'I thank the jury members for selecting him to the prestigious award. I am very happy that I had the pride to take the honour, which was received by several eminent personalities in various fields, and was able to stand along with them.'
The film Sri Rama Rajyam is getting good response from all sections of the audiences. The film directed by Bapu is rich in visuals, has a good screenplay and the dialogues by Mullapudi are simple and easy to understand.
Nayanatara who played the role of Sita has given a wonderful performance. She has excelled so much that everyone is now saying that she us sure to bag the Nandi award fro best actress award for the year 2011.