Telugu Film Industry has lost another gem of a person Dasari Narayana Rao garu. Since the past few months his health has not been so stable. In January this year, he made it to the headlines due to his deteriorating health. However after few he was discharged from the hospital declaring his health was now stable. But his condition once again turned critical earlier this week and was admitted at a private hospital in Hyderabad.
In his career of 151 films as a director and 53 films as a producer, Dasari Narayana Rao has delivered many blockbusters . In his heyday, he was one of the most influential and prolific directors who had a flair for highlighting gender and class discrimination present in the society through films At one point of time, he was making nearly 10-12 films in a year, sometimes hopping between sets of different films on the same day. He holds the Limca book of world records for directing the most number of films.
Talking about his obsession with cinema, when he turned 70, he was once quoted as saying, “The only thing I know in my life is cinema. I don’t know anything else. During Manashulantha Okkate time, NTR said, ‘Brother, If you want to become number one in your profession, you need to sacrifice things you like. Everybody gives priority to their family life than to their profession. But I make my profession a priority. You are also doing the same. I can guarantee that you will become number one in the future due to the same quality.’ That’s the reason why I want to keep making films.”
Apart from being a filmmaker, producer, and a lyricist, he was also a journalist. In the early 80s, he started a newspaper — Udayam — which went on to become the second largest selling newspaper in Andhra Pradesh, behind Eenadu. The filmmaker’s immense popularity, along with top-notch style of reporting in the newspaper, made Udayam a runaway hit. And ever since, he has been a father-figure to many journalists and he even took some of them under his wing to groom them as writers and filmmakers. Not so long ago, when the media accused a popular actor of using foul language while referring to them, it was Dasari who took up the matter in his own hands to reprimand the actor and made him apologise for what he had done. Such was his power that no one could oppose his authority.
He was not only widely respected, but also left many awestruck with his command over the medium of film. His death truly marks the end of an era in Telugu cinema, which owes a lot to the veteran filmmaker who was ‘Guruvu Garu’ for everyone.