Society

Director ‘Bapu’ passes away

Sattiraju Lakshmi Narayana also known as 'Bapu'   | Photo Credit: Special Arrangement

Sattiraju Lakshmi Narayana, popularly known as ‘Bapu’, the legendary director who is credited with bringing Telugu films out of the studios passed away in Chennai on Sunday. He was 80 years old.

Mr. Lakshmi Narayana, who had been unwell, was hospitalised 3 days ago. He suffered a massive cardiac arrest and died around 4 p.m., sources close to his family said. His body was brought to his R.A. Puram residence later in the evening.

A number of eminent personalities paid their respects to Mr. Lakshmi Narayana. Born to Sattiraju Venugopala Rao and Suryakantham, he studied commerce before taking up a law course at Madras University. He lived in Chennai for over 50 years.

He is famous for having shot from locations from his very first film Sakshi in 1967. The script for the film was written by Mullapudi Venkata Ramana, with whom Mr. Lakshmi Narayana was close friends since school. In fact, the ‘Bapu-Ramana’ duo teamed up to produce several well-known films.

Known for his cartoons before he plunged into films, Mr. Lakshmi Narayana received a lifetime achievement award from the Indian Institute of Cartoonists in 2001.

Paying his respects on his Facebook page, singer S.P.Balasubrahmanyam wrote: “Bapuji – I am lost. Without you – the entire Telugu fraternity misses you.” Stating that he was associated with 90 per cent of the director’s creations, the singer said his first recording took place on Bapu’s birthday – December 15, which he will always cherish.

“He was crestfallen when his soul mate Venkata Ramana passed away almost two years ago. I should say that he never recovered from that loss,” the singer added. The two had collaborated in Sri Rama Rajyam, Mr. Lakshmi Narayana’s last film, in 2011.

A fellow cartoonist and family friend recalled that at the time of directing Sakshi, Bapu did not possess any formal training or even an apprenticeship in film-making. The film, the cartoonist said, is regarded as among the most important landmarks in the Telugu film industry.

The director received the Padma Shri last year.

He has won the National Film awards twice and the Andhra Pradesh State government’s Nandi awards for 6 of his films.


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Printable version | Sep 24, 2021 7:33:26 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/chennai/chen-society/director-bapu-passes-away/article6367375.ece

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