In 1960's Telugu Cinema had been known for making some great inroads into technique and storytelling. Many new talented writers who saw themselves writing great theatre in social dramas and finding their way into Radio Broadcasting waves to create their own world for the characters and shape up their future careers.
Every one had an alternative career during the time and one of them is Dasari Narayana Rao. One of the great social drama writers who is creating waves in theatre but a government employee who dearly loved his job. Few friends encouraged him to take up his passion as his full time job, Dasari finally took the train to Chennai. He had few contacts and slowly understood people are not as easy here in the industry as they appear outside. He got an opportunity to write, Tuglaq, written and directed by Cho. Ramaswamy in Tamil.
He took it with both hands and wrote additional dialogue and also worked as assistant director for the Krishnam Raju, Nagabhushanam, Rama prabha starrer political satire, Mohammad Bin Thuglaq in Telugu. He wrote Jagath Jantrilu and many more as writer. Slowly, he found producers who could believe him and he got dates of SV Ranga Rao for his movie. But the director thought he doesn't need a big hero for his movie and went ahead with comedian Raja Babu as hero and managed to get dates of then, popular heroine, Vijaya Nirmala and started the movie.
During the days, SV Ranga Rao always used to drink and never came on sets sober. But due to the story and his character, SVR decided to remain sober for all the twenty days of shoot and the director completed the movie. The movie did face some issues before release but once it released it created huge sensation. The songs from the movie, "Adi Soma Mangala Budha", "Anubandham Athmeeyatha" became huge classics and the template for many small films was born. Many writers and directors took, Tata - Manavadu story and made their own versions. This was in 1972.
After the release, a new sensation in Telugu Cinema came to being and the director scored 14 major hits in a row. He was a phenomenon. Slowly, he got calls from Krishna, Sobhan Babu, Akkineni Nageswara Rao and Nandamuri Taraka Ramarao. Fan of ANR, he directed him in more films than any other and he even have him his last blockbuster as hero, Premabhishekham. For NTR, he gave Sardar Paparayudu and Bobbili Puli. After a while, he decided to prove to producers and industry that story is the major hero and made movies based on women and taboo elements like Sivaranjani, Balipeetam, etc.
His ideas were revolutionary, however good his directorial skills are he believed in his writing and invented many techniques to extract performances from his actors. Introduced many writers, directors, actors, musicians to industry and became, 'Guruvu garu' to whole industry. He could go and write songs, dialogues, compose dances, direct and act in films and during 90's he used to do A to Z for his films.
He tried to revive a dying print media with 'Udayam' in 80's but couldn't withstand 'Eenadu' storm and Dasari always used to say, that was his biggest failure in life. Invited into politics by Rajeev Gandhi, slowly worked in Congress to a senior position crossing all the egos and hurdles to become Cabinet rank Minister of State for Mining. In his term, coal scam came into being and the man was maligned as corrupted. Till his death, he had been fighting the case in various courts.
The man then moved tried to launch to son, Dasari Arun kumar as hero but failed. He claimed in an interview, "For a man who launched careers of actors like Jayasudha, Jayapradha, Mohan Babu, Rajababu aka Murali Mohan, Suresh, Vinod Kumar and countless others couldn't launch my son. That always hurts me!" On personal front, he had a great relationship with his wife, Dasari Padma who was revered as mother by many Industry insiders.
He won National awards with Megha Sandesam, many State Government awards and was also awarded Padma Bhushan for his services to Cinema. He is the man who fought for unions in Industry, he is the man who launched careers, he is the man who reacted as the 'Big Man' of the Industry for every issue and he is the man who fought against everything that is wrong and voiced out his opinion without fail. Today, he said like in his MeghaSandesam, "Aakasa desana Aashada Masana Mereseti oo Meghame Dasari!" and left all his admirers in great tragedy.
We hope the great writer, a revolutionary at heart and a visionary in developing Film making business will remain to be a great inspiration for years to come!