Veteran actor ANR recently celebrated 66 years in cinema.

Akkineni Nageswara Rao, who ruled Telugu cinema along with NT Rama Rao in its golden era, has crossed 66 years of his acting career from Sri Sitarama Jananam to Sri Ramadasu, and still aspires to play the right kind of role if it came his way. His journey as an actor is a record in Indian cinema. Akriti, a cultural organisation, celebrated this event, at Ravindra Bharati with pomp and fare last week.

Dr. C. Narayana Reddy, who wrote many songs for ANR's roles during that period, lauded the way ANR entertained the audience. He recalled how ANR was the first person to introduce step dancing into one of his films which was remade in Hindi in a time when there was not much of male dancing, though now it is a prime part. Even Dilip Kumar paid rich complements to ANR's Devdas, saying ANR impressed better than his Hindi interpretation of Devdas. Batasari was another great film that ANR always mentioned as one of his best films.

Inaugurating the festivities, former Governor of Karnataka, Ramadevi, said ANR observed high degree of discipline in his life and profession. Former Vice Chancellor of Telugu University, Avula Manjulatha, called Nageswara Rao a textbook of Telugu cinema. Many people were invited to speak on various aspects of the contribution of ANR to Telugu cinema and they analysed this well.

The matinee idol, in his response, hoped that the present day artistes would study his roles in films and lay their path to progress. He was also warmly felicitated. Marking the occasion, singers Amani, Srinidhi, Venkatrao, Paraveen Kumar, Syamala, Diwakar and others rendered songs from ANR's films.