Rajanala Kaleswara Rao

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Rajanala Kaleswara Rao
Raja .jpg
Rajanala in Hello Brother (1994)
Rajanala Kaleswara Rao Naidu

3 January 1925
Died21 May 1998 (aged 73)
Other namesRajanala
King of Villains
Alma materUniversity of Lucknow
Andhra University
Years active1950-1996
Known forTenali Ramakrishna
Gundamma Katha
Chitti Tammudu
Gulebakavali Katha
Shri Krishna Pandaviyam
Palnati Yudham
Spouse(s)R. B. Devi
AwardsAndhra Pradesh State Nandi Awards

Rajanala Kaleswara Rao Naidu, popularly known as Rajanala, was an Indian film actor known for his works predominantly in Telugu cinema, Telugu theatre, and few Tamil, Kannada and Bollywood films. In a film career spanning more than forty years, Rajanala starred in more than four hundred feature films in a variety of characters. Regarded as one of the finest method actors, Rajanala was known for his gruesome portrayals of lead antagonist roles during the Golden age of Telugu cinema[1][2] as well as numerous comedy roles such as in Jagadeka Veeruni Katha.

Early life and characteristics[edit]

Rajanala was born on January 3, 1925 in Nellore, Andhra Pradesh, India. While working as a revenue inspector in Nellore from 1944–51 he made his entry into theatre. A post graduate in philosophy from University of Lucknow and a voracious reader of English literature.[3][4]


Being a diabetic, his right leg could not withstand the rigors of outdoor shooting in Araku valley in 1995 when he was playing a full-fledged role in Telugu Veera Levara. His leg which was injured during the shooting had to be amputated at Nizams Institute of Medical Sciences. Later Rajanala had severe cardiac arrest, was admitted in Vijaya Hospital in Chennai. He died on 21 May 1998 in Chennai.[1][5]

Selected filmography[edit]



  1. ^ a b "The original swashbuckler". The Hindu. 3 April 2009. Retrieved 15 July 2018.
  2. ^ M.L. Narasimham (11 February 2016). "Rajamakutam (1960)". The Hindu. Retrieved 15 July 2018.
  3. ^ M.L. Narasimham (9 July 2015). "Manchi manasuku manchi rojulu (1958)". The Hindu. Retrieved 15 July 2018.
  4. ^ M.L. Narasimham (14 August 2014). "Jayasimha (1955)". The Hindu. Retrieved 15 July 2018.
  5. ^ "Rajanala Kaleswara Rao Jayanthi Special - Video Dailymotion". Retrieved 15 July 2018.