The journalist turned film personality VijayaBapineedu, who passed away recently, was very close to actor Murali Mohan and made many films with him initially.During the later part of his career, Bapineedu became close to Chiranjeevi and closely travelled with him till he became a Megastar. The entry is an ode to their combination, which started with the film “PatnamVacchina Pathivrathalu” and ended after 13 years with “BigBoss” in 1993!
Patnam Vacchina Pathivrathalu (1982): Muting of music when Dasari Narayana Rao name appears on the title cards, the letters B.A. after the name K.Raghavendra Rao, the imprint of S.S. Rajamouli …..these are some of the signature styles which we are familiar with over the years. Ardent film fans also remember Bapineedu’s style of not mentioning his name as Producer in any of his movies right from his first film “Yavvanam Kaateesindhi”. He always went with the phrase ” VijayaBapineedu Nirmaanathaloo“!
Bapineedu’s 13 years association with Chiru started in 1982 with this hit-film. Mouli made his director debut with this film! Chiru and MohanBabu acted as brothers in this film, which is best remembered for Nutan Prasad’s line “Deesam Chaalaa Klishta Paristhithiloo Undhi”! Though he used the line in one other movie before, the dialogue reached the critical mass only through this film!
Magamahaaraaju (1983): Bapineedu made his director debut through this film. I remember an article mentioning that Chiru was not at all convinced with the way the film was progressing half way through. But the family drama eventually became a big hit of the year 1983.
MahaaNagaramloo Maayagaadu (1984): A forgetful film in their combination. Nothing much to recall from the film except the title song and the cork ball fight.
Hero: The 1985 film was loosely inspired by Spielberg-Harrison Ford all time classic ” Riders of the Last Arc” in the Indiana Zones series. An article in Jyothi Chitra mentioned that more than Geetha Arts got more than 500 snakes to remake the famous scene on the train from the English film. Allu Ramalingaiah and Nirmalamma have a medley in this film. “Gonna Raathiri Khaidhilaaa” and “Dhiddidhidhinnadhi Dhee” are the two popular songs from the film, which completed its 100 days run in 5 centres (all shift). I will share the 100 days ad on the film’s release anniversary in March.
Magadheerudu (1986) : Bapineedu returned to the family drama genre with the film “Magadheerudu”! But Kannada actor UdayKumar was overbearing in this film. Jayasudha was also a miscast opposite Chiru. Bad music and sloppy narration also killed the film’s long term prospects.
Khaidhi No 1986: Bapineedu got back his form with this film in 1988. Mid-way through the run the film was embroiled in a controversy as some minority organisations filed a petition against the use of the number 786 in the title.
GangLeader: The combination’s most significant outing came in the year 1991 through Gangleader. Though JagadeekaVeerudu Athilooka Sundari was an industry hit in the previous year, Chiru had to share the accolades with Sridevi as her glamour was one of the reasons for the films’ extra-ordinary success.
But it was Chiru’s one man show in Gangleader (though Vijayashanthi may think otherwise). The film struck gold at the box-office due to his rugged look and mannerisms. In a nutshell, Gang Leader was another tipping point in Chiru’s career as it made him penetrate into a new generation of audience especially in Nizam.
Bapineedu became a darling of Chiru fan fraternity for celebrating the films’ 100 days function in 4 different centres in the State.
BigBoss : The combination’s last film BigBoss was a colossal failure at the box-office. The huge hype created for this film petered out on the first day as the film had nothing to offer. To make matters worse, Peddharayudu, the other film which was released on the same day, got a super-hit talk right from the word go. As they say every high as a corresponding low.
But Chiru and his fans will remember Bapineedu for ever for also publishing the glossy magazine Megastar Chiranjeevi, which till date, is the only professionally run fan magazine in the country. It is a different story that the magazine was published only for few years.
Fact file on Bapineedu and some other anecdotes from his movies soon!!