Superstar Krishna & Sridevi-A hit pair: Before becoming the number one actress in Bollywood, Sridevi was a very busy actress in South India. She had many hits with all leading actors in Tamil and Telugu –NTR (Vetagadu, Kondaveeti Simham etc), ANR (Premabhishekam, SriRanga Neethulu etc), Sobhan Babu (Karthika Deepam, Devatha etc), KrishnamRaju (Trisulam). But it was with Superstar Krishna with whom she had the longest association.

From Burripalem Bullodu (1979) to Maharajasri Mayagadu (1988), they acted in several high profile movies and became one of the most bankable pairs of Telugu Cinema. There were several musical hits in their combination and their movies dealt with a broad range of ‘subjects’. This post attempts to describe the magic they created on screen and is also a tribute to Superstar Krishna on his Birthday.SS and SD

                                           Movies in which they acted together

No Movie Name Date Director
1 Burripalem Bullodu 16.11.79 B.Masthan Rao
2 Samajaniki Saval 28.12.79 S.P.Rajaram
3 Devudichina Koduku 14.02.80 K.S.R.Das
4 Gharana Donga 29.03.80 K.Raghavendra Rao
5 Mama Allulla Sawal 10.04.80 K.S.R.Das
6 Adhrustavanthudu 09.05.80 G.P.Sekhar
7 Ram – Robert – Rahim 31.05.80 Vijaya Nirmala
8 Chuttalunnaru Jagratha 08.08.80 B.V.Prasad
9 Bangaru Bava 31.12.80 K.Subba Rao
10 Gurusishyulu 21.03.81 K.Bapayya
11 Bhoga Bagyalu 05.06.81 P.Chandra Sekhar Reddy
12 Gadasari Atha-Sogasari Kodalu 20.06.81 Katta Subba Rao
13 Bangaru Bhumi 14.01.82 P.Chandra Sekhar Reddy
14 Bangaru Koduku 19.02.82 K.S.R.Das
15 Krishnarjunulu 26.03.82 Dasari Narayana Rao
16 Prema Nakshatram 06.08.82 P.Sambasiva Rao
17 Krishnaavatharam 22.09.82 Bapu
18 Shamsher Shankar 21.10.82 K.S.R.Das
19 Kalavaari Samsaaram 03.12.82 K.S.Rami Reddy
20 Oorantha Sankranthi 12.02.83 Dasari Narayana Rao
21 Kirayi Kotigadu 17.03.83 A.Kodanda Rami Reddy
22 Adavi Simhalu 24.04.83 K.Raghavendra Rao
23 Ramarajyamlo Bhimaraju 28.07.83 A.Kodanda Rami Reddy
24 Kanchu Kagada 28.09.84 A.Kodanda Rami Reddy
25 Vajrayudham 05.07.85 K.Raghavendra Rao
26 Pachani Kapuram 07.09.85 Thathineni Ramarao
27 Jayam Manade 10.04.86 K.Bapayya
28 Khaidi Rudrayya 05.06.86 A.Kodanda Rami Reddy
29 Makutam Leni Maharaju 13.03.87 K.Bapayya
30 Maa Oori Magadu 30.10.87 K.Bapayya
31 Maharajasri Mayagadu 09.09.88 K.Vijayabapineedu

Interesting facts:

  • Superstar Krishna, the only mainstream hero in India to act with 4 actresses —Vijaya Nirmala, Jayaprada, Sridevi & Radha—in 30 or mores each. Amazingly, all his outings with the last three were made in Color, which is a record in Indian Film History
  • Sridevi is the only actress to act in 3 consecutive movies twice with Krishna in a calendar year – Gharana Donga, Mama Allulla Sawaal, Adrushtavanthudu & Ram Robert Rahim in 1980 and Bangaru Bhoomi, Bangaaru Koduku & Krishnaarjunulu in 1982
  • Sridevi acted as Superstar Krishna’s daughter in “ Maa Nanna Nirdoshi
  • She played the role of his sister in the film “ Devudu Laanti Manishi”. Interestingly, Sridevi’s arch-rival Jayaprada also acted as his sister in one of the movies-“Adavi Simhaalu” (1983)
  • Sridevi acted as Krishna’s mother in the film “ Samaajaniki Sawal “
  • “Chuttalunnaru Jagrattha” is the only film in their combination in which Krishna acted in dual roles (Samajaaniki Sawal cannot be considered as one because the two characters do not meet)
  • Producer S.P.Venkanna Babu used to manage the dates (call sheets) of both Krishna and Sridevi
  • Superstar went out of his way to accommodate the producers of “Oorantha Sankranthi” and completed 2 songs with Sridevi in 3 days
  • Both movies – “Krishnaarjunulu” & “Oorantha Sankraanthi” -in which they acted together with Director Dasari Narayana Rao are multi-starrers
  • S.R.Das, K.Bapayya and A.Kodanda Rami Reddy have each made 4 movies with the pair
  • Aswini Dutt, Middhe Rama Rao, N.Ramalingeswara Rao, T.Trivikrama Rao are the producers apart from S.P.Venkanna Babu, who produced multiple movies with them
  • 1982 (Vayyari Bhamalu Vagalamari Bharthalu) and 1983 (Mundhadugu) are the only years in which Sridevi was not paired with Krishna when acting in a multi-starrer movies
  • Samajaaniki Sawal, Ram Robert Rahim and Pacchani Kapuram are the only remakes in which they acted


Opening week collections:

Three movies in their combination set new records when they debuted at the box-office

1 Ram Robert Rahim Rs 32,16,244/-
2 Adavi Simhaalu Rs 64,02,102/-
3 Kanchu Kagada Rs 82,79,543/- 

Box-Office records: 

  • Superstar Krishna and Sridevi are the only pair to have two consecutive direct 100 days filmsGharana Donga & Maama Allulla Sawaal and three direct 100 days films—Gharana Donga, Maama Allulla Sawaal and Chuttalunnaru Jagrattha– in a year (1980)

Note: NTR and Savithri’s “Naadhee Aaadajanme, Devatha (1965) are Black and White films

  • Superstar Krishna and Sridevi are the first pair to act in two consecutive films –Vajrayudham and Pacchani Kapuram (1985)—that ran for 50 days in 9 or more centers after the AP State Government (undivided) introduced the slab taxation system
  • Two color movies in their combination released in the same month (June) in a year (1981) and both ran for 50 days or more in the same Centre (Vijayawada)—Bhogabagyalu @ Shanthi (50 days) & Gadasari Attha Sogasari Kodalu @ Urvashi (56 days)
  • The two records above also make them the only lead pair in Telugu Cinema to have two consecutive 50 days movies in a single center anywhere in AP (undivided) both before the introduction of slab system and post that.
  • They are the only pair to act in two color films in a calendar year from the same production house. They set this record in 1982 with Bangaaru Bhoomi and Kalavaari Samsaaram, which were produced by P.Venkanna Babu on his Maheshwari Combines banner. Both movies ran for 50 days or more in 4 or more centers.

* Note: ANR and Savithri acted in three successive Black and White movies—Ardhangi, Santhanam and Vadina –but the producers were different. Sobhan Babu and Vaniri acted in two consecutive films – Jeevana Tharangaalu and Chakravaakam—in Suresh Movies in 1975. Both were Black & White films. ANR and Vanisree acted in two consecutive movies –Chakradhaari and AaluMagalu—in 1977 but in different banners. ANR acted with Jayasudha in two consecutives movies in 1981—Sreevaari Mucchatlu and Premabhishekam– but in different banners. Similarly, in 1986, Krishnam Raju acted with Jayaprabha in two consecutive movies—UgraNarasimham and Tandrapaparayudu—but in different banners

  • Both films mentioned above ran with packed houses for 25 days or more in a single centre (Vizag) in AP thus setting up a fantastic record – Bangaru Bhoomi at Manorama (25 days) and Kalavaari Samsaaram at Chitralaya (28 days housefuls)
  • Kirayi Kotigadu is the first film to run for 100 days (late release) in Nidadavolu
  • All movies they acted together with directors Raghavendra Rao and A.Kodanda Rami Reddy ran for 49 days or more in at least two centers in AP. This record will remain forever because the movies in these combinations covered both systems of taxation –slab and non slab
  • Krishna and Sridevi are the only lead pair in Telugu cinema to have a direct 50/direct 100 days film in a particular calendar month (March) for four consecutive years (1980-83)             
Name Date
1 Gharana Donga 29.03.80
2 Gurusishyulu 21.03.81
3 Krishnarjunulu 26.03.82
4 Kirayi Kotigadu 17.03.83
  • This is the only lead pair to have 3 successive color movies that ran for more than 48 days in a single center in a calendar year. They achieved this record in Hyderabad in 1980—Gharana Donga (Subhash-48 days), Mama Allulla Sawal (Basanth-70 days) & Adrushtavanthudu (Sudarshan 70)

Note: The above list is not comprehensive as there are many records that I am still not aware of. “Sariga gamanimchamante , Sathyam kanipedatham itte” , writes Seetharamasastry (Sirivennala) in Brahmotsavam and that is exactly what I will continue do for many more years!