Dr. Rajkumar

Dr. Rajkumar (Real name: Singanalluru Puttaswamayya Mutturaju) (April 24, 1929 – April 12, 2006) was one of the most popular actors of movies made in Kannada the language of Karnataka, a southern state of India. "Dr.Raj" or "Annavru" (big brother) to millions of his fans, he was sometimes called the John Wayne of South Indian cinema. He acted in more than 200 movies over 50 years in Kannada. Some of his popular films include Bangaaradha Manushya (The Golden Man), Kasturi Nivasa, Gandhadha Gudi and Jeevana Chaitra. He was also a well-known singer as a playback singer as well as devotional songs. Dr. Rajkumar still has a large fan following throughout the world. His most memorable films include Bedara Kannapa, Bangarada Manushya, Kastoori Nivasa, Sri Krishnadevaraya, Kula Gowrava, Gandhada Gudi, Sampathige Sawal, Shankar-Guru, Babruvahana, Bhakta Prahalada, Halu Jenu, Bhagyada Lakshmi Baramma, Jeevana Chaitra, Akasmika, Premada Kanike, Vasantha Geetha, Apoorva Sangama, Daari Tappida Maga, and many others. He started his career as a dramatist with his father in a troupe led by Gubbi Veeranna. There, he learned all his acting and singing skills. During his career on stage he became famous for his role as Arjuna. Bedara Kannapa was his first movie in the lead role, but had earlier acted in Ohileshwara a mythological movie. He made the first independent Kannada movie called "Ranadheera Kantheerava" exclusively with pure Kannada technicians and cast, and succeeded in a big way. The same event marked the emergence of the Kannada Cinema industry as an independent entity separate from other south Indian cinema industries. Dr. Rajkumar was also one of the most versatile actors in Indian cinema. His character depictions ranged from comedy to action, from lover to double/triple roles, from mythological characters to portrayal of modern day social causes. He acted with the most popular heroines in southern Indian cinema, such as Kannada's Leelavathi, Arathi, Jayanti, Jayaprada, Madhavi, Sarita and others from neighbouring states. He acted with many directors of the south Indian cinema from B.R. Pantulu, Puttanna Kanagal to Shankar Nag and Nagabharana. He was known for only acting in Kannada movies, even though he got many offers from different movie industries in India. Actors who have acted with him considered it an achievement of their lifetime. In his lifetime, he has acted in 205 Kannada movies. He had a film production company called Vajreshwari Combines. He also was well trained in Yoga and horse riding. At his peak he is said to have worked out for 3 hours and practised pranayama, a form of meditation, every day. Two of his most famous performances were in his own productions - Kaviratna Kalidasa and Shankar-Guru. He produced movies based on famous Kannada novels. He was ably supported by his friend and script writer Chi.Udayashankar. He chose stories which usually had a social message for the audience. He also made many movies against social evils. One such movie is Shabdwivedi [edit] Singer Dr. Rajkumar was also a famous singer. He won the national award for the song "Naadamaya" of the movie Jeevana Chaitra. His singing career started with the song "Yaare Koogadali" in the hugely popular movie Sampathige Savaal. Later he went on to sing for most of his movies and for many private albums which were mainly devotional albums. His song renditions would range from pure classical to disco and fast numbers to pathos. Although his singing was greatly appreciated, his fans of the days of black-and-white movies in 1960s and 1970s, swear by the fact that his true identity was P.B. Srinivas, who did the playback singing for most of Rajkumar's movies, until Rajkumar himself started to sing. P.B.Srinivas continued singing for him in many of the movies in which Rajkumar starred in double/triple roles. In recent years, Rajkumar had lent his voice to a few other actors and sang many background solos. One such song which holds a unique distinction was for the movie Muddina Maava wherein he had provided playback to the legendary singer S.P.Balasubramaniyam, who had acted in the movie. This is probably a rare occasion where an actor sings for a singer, which is probably unmatched in the world of cinema. He had sung many devotional songs on Hanuman and Sri Raghavendra Swamiji. One of his most famous songs was "Huttidare Kannada Nadalli Hutta Beku". Read more on Last.fm. User-contributed text is available under the Creative Commons By-SA License; additional terms may apply.