Dasari Narayana Rao had planned Jayalalithaa biopic with Anushka Shetty

Updated on May 31, 2017 01:52 PM IST

Telugu filmmaker Dasari Narayana Rao was planning a biopic on the late actor-politician J Jayalalithaa with Anushka Shetty of Baahubali fame in the lead.

Anushka Shetty in a still from her hit Telugu film Mirchi.
Anushka Shetty in a still from her hit Telugu film Mirchi.
Hindustan Times, Chennai | BySandeep Acharya

The sudden demise of legendary Telugu filmmaker Dasari Narayana Rao has come as a big blow to Telugu filmdom, with most celebrities describing his death as an end of an era. With over 150 films as a director to his credit and 50 more as producer, his last directorial outing was the 2014 Telugu flick, Erra Bus, which unfortunately tanked without a trace at the box-office. It wasn’t long ago that he announced he had plans to make a film on the life of late Tamil Nadu chief minister and actor J Jayalalithaa. We have exclusively learnt that Baahubali fame Anushka Shetty was the front-runner for the leading role and apparently Dasari had plans to meet her soon and discuss.

“His plan was to make the film with Anushka, and he believed only she could pull off the role convincingly. It’s unfortunate that he passed away even before he could meet and pitch the idea to her,” a source told HT. There are rumours that actor Mohan Babu, who owes his career to Dasari, might take up this dream project. “It hasn’t come to it yet. We can’t say that with absolute certainty. If he has any plans, I’m sure he will make them public,” the source added.

Some of his best Telugu films include Premabhishekam, Meghasandesham, Osey Ramulamma and Tata Manavadu. In most of his films, he even donned the greasepaint, playing some key roles in his over four-decade long career. The National award-winning filmmaker directed a few Hindi films such as Swarg Narak, Yaadgar, Prem Tapasya and Zakhmi Sher among others. Survived by two sons and a daughter, Rao’s last rites will be performed on Wednesday.

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