|Sri Rama Rajyam|
|Produced by||Yalamanchali Saibabu|
|Cinematography||P. R. K. Raju|
|Edited by||G. G. Krishna Rao|
Sri Sai Baba Movies
|Budget||₹32 crore (US$4.0 million)|
|Box office||₹72 crore (US$9.0 million)(India)|
Sri Rama Rajyam (transl. The Kingdom of Lord Rama) is a 2011 Indian Telugu-language devotional film directed by Bapu (in his last venture) who co-wrote the film with Mullapudi Venkata Ramana, and produced by Yalamanchali Saibabu. The film stars Nandamuri Balakrishna, Nayanthara, Akkineni Nageswara Rao, Srikanth, and its music was composed by Ilaiyaraaja, which won him Nandi Award for Best Music Director. Sri Rama Rajyam is a reboot of the 1963 blockbuster film Lava Kusa.
Upon its release, Sri Rama Rajyam received positive reviews and became a commercial success. Sri Rama Rajyam garnered seven State Nandi Awards, including the Nandi Award for Best Feature Film; three Filmfare Awards South, and one SIIMA Award. The film was featured at the 42nd IFFI on 28 November 2011. The film was simultaneously dubbed into Tamil, and Malayalam with the same title, and in Hindi as Ayodhyapati Sri Ram.
Lord Rama returns to Ayodhya after defeating Ravana along with Goddess Sita to be crowned as the emperor and settles down to a harmonious lifestyle. When his spies inform him that his reputation may be at stake as Sita had spent over a year in Ravana's Lanka, he asks Lakshmana to ensure that Sita is sent to exile. A devastated, pregnant, and distraught Sita is rescued by Valmiki, who takes her to his Ashram by renaming her Lokapavni, where she subsequently gives birth to twin sons Lava and Kusha. Lord Hanuman also accompanies Sita and serves her in the form of tribal child Balaraju. Valmiki trains them in every possible way, including knowledge, warfare, and religion. Ten years later, the twins decide to visit a drought and famine-ravaged Ayodhya to get the blessings of Srirama and Sita as well as recite the Ramayan, and here they find that Srirama has exiled Sita, and they return home disappointed and refuse to recite the Ramayan any more. The twins then stop the Aswamedha horse, not realising that they will soon be thrust into a confrontation with Lakshman, Rama, and the entire army of Ayodhya. After that, they find out that their father is Rama himself. Sita reunites her two sons Kusha and Lava with their father Rama and returns to her mother Bhudevi. Rama and his brothers renounce the throne and crown Rama's sons, Lava and Kusha, king. Rama returns to Vaikuntha. As he merges into his original form, Vishnu, he is reunited with Sita in her original form, Lakshmi.
- Nandamuri Balakrishna as Rama / Vishnu
- Nayanthara as Sita / Lakshmi
- Akkineni Nageswara Rao as Valmiki
- Srikanth as Lakshmana
- Roja as Bhudevi
- K. R. Vijaya as Kousalya Devi
- Vindu Dara Singh as Hanuman
- Pavan Sriram as Balaraju (Young Hanuman)
- Gaurav as Lava
- Dhanush Kumar as Kusha
- Murali Mohan as Janaka Maha Raju
- M. Balaiah as Maharshi Vashistha
- Brahmanandam as Chakali Tippadu
- AVS as Narada
- Sameer as Bharata
- Shanoor Sana as Kaikeyi
- Sudha as Queen Sunayana (Janaka's wife)
- Sandhya Janak as Sumitra
- Hema as Mandodari
- Raghunatha Reddy
Veteran director Bapu announced that he would remake the 1963 film Lava Kusa with Balakrishna who reprises the role of Lord Rama which was enacted by his father N. T. Rama Rao in the original film. Bapu's friend Mullapudi Venkata Ramana has written the screenplay and dialogues for the film and notably was his last film as he died before the film's release. Bapu said that the title of the film was inspired from 1943 Hindi film Ram Rajya.
Balakrishna was assigned to play Rama. Mamta Mohandas was the original choice  after considering Jyothika, Anushka Shetty and Sneha. But she couldn't do it owing to her cancer treatment, after which Nayanthara was selected to play Sita. Balakrishna said that when Saibabu approached him for the role the moment he said that Bapu is to direct the film, without any questions, he immediately said ‘yes'. For the character, Balakrishna had to shave off his mustache. Sandhya Janak was selected to play the role of queen Sumithra. Saikumar was initially approached to enact the character of Bharatha but he was eventually replaced by Sameer. Gaurav, Dhanush, and Pawan were selected to play the characters of Lava, Kusa and young Hanuman.
"A mythological film calls for a lot of work as the sets need to have a period look. For "Sri Ramarajayam" I made huge sets of durbars and palace interiors. My art director gave the sketch to the RFC staff and they created the set for us. Nearly 700 workers from RFC worked on the sets and completed it on time".
—Yalamanchili Saibabu about the set designs of the film.
The filming began on 22 November 2010. The costumes for the film was designed by Anu Vardhan. Anu stated that for Nayanthara, she went and picked up tulasi mala from authentic places. Balakrishna had used his father's accessories and jewellery and Anu replicated it to match with the heroine. Yugandhar Tammareddy of Pixelloid said that Bapu and his team gave storyboards down to the last detail. Along with 100 of his team members, Yugandhar had his task cut out. "The breathtaking palace, the pushpaka vimanam, the Bhoodevi sequence…" were all created by his team. Yugandhar said: "For the palace, we asked the filmmakers to erect a 12-foot palace set just so that there is authenticity when people walk on the floor, lean against a wall or touch a piece of furniture. The rest was done on visual effects". The film was entirely shot at Ramoji Film City with a set erected resembling a kingdom.
|Sri Rama Rajyam|
|Soundtrack album by|
|Released||15 August 2011|
|Genre||Feature film soundtrack|
The audio of the film was released on 15 August 2011 and the launch was held at Bhadrachalam under Bhadradri Ramayya and Seetamma's Sannidi on the same day. The soundtrack was composed by Ilaiyaraaja and it features 15 tracks. The lyrics for the Telugu version were written by Jonnavithhula Ramalingeswara Rao, while Mankombu Gopalakrishnan and Piraisoodan penned the lyrics for the Malayalam and Tamil versions respectively.
|1.||"Jagadananda Karaka"||S. P. Balasubrahmanyam, Shreya Ghoshal||5:16|
|2.||"Evadunnadee Lokamlo"||S. P. Balasubrahmanyam||1:32|
|3.||"Sitarama Charitam"||Shreya Ghoshal, Shweta Mohan||6:35|
|4.||"Srirama Lera"||Shreya Ghoshal, Sriram Parthasarathy||4:47|
|5.||"Devulle Mechchindi"||K. S. Chitra, Shreya Ghoshal||5:25|
|6.||"Gali Ningi Neeru"||S. P. Balasubrahmanyam||4:36|
|7.||"Ramayanamu"||K. S. Chitra, Shreya Ghoshal||6:30|
|8.||"Dandakam"||Surabhi Shravani, Keertana||1:13|
|9.||"Sita Shrimantam"||Shreya Ghoshal||4:59|
|10.||"Rama Rama"||Shweta Mohan, Anita||4:35|
|12.||"Idi Pattabhi Ramuni"||Shweta Mohan||2:37|
|13.||"Saptashwarathamarudham"||S. P. Balasubrahmanyam||1:10|
|14.||"Shankuchakralu Polina"||Shweta Mohan||1:02|
|15.||"Mangalam Ramunaku"||Anitha Karthikeyan, Keertana||0:53|
|1.||"Jagadananda Karaka"||S. P. Balasubrahmanyam, Chinmayi||5:16|
|2.||"Evan Irukkar"||S. P. Balasubrahmanyam||1:32|
|3.||"Sitarama Charitam"||Shweta Mohan||6:35|
|5.||"Sree Ramavaarai"||Sakyath, Chinmayi||3:41|
|8.||"Devargal Thittikka"||Chithra, Chinmayi||4:38|
|9.||"Rama Rama"||Shweta Mohan, Anitha, Chinmayi||3:11|
|10.||"Divya Soundarya"||Anitha, Keerthana||2:19|
|11.||"Kaatru Vaanam"||S. P. Balasubrahmanyam||0.48|
|12.||"Idhu Pattabhi"||Shweta Mohan||2:37|
|13.||"Saptashwarathamarudham"||S. P. Balasubrahmanyam||1:10|
|15.||"Mangalam Ramanukku"||Anitha, Chinmayi||0:53|
|1.||"Jagadananda Karaka"||Madhu Balakrishnan, Preetha P. V.||5:16|
|2.||"Aarundivide Ulakathil"||Madhu Balakrishnan||1:32|
|3.||"Sitarama Charitam"||Preetha P. V., Ranjini Jose||6:35|
|5.||"Ramaniduvan"||Preetha P. V., Ranjini Jose||3:41|
|8.||"Devarkalikichicha"||Ranjini Jose, Preetha P. V.||4:38|
|11.||"Hrudutha Pathaksha"||Madhu Balakrishnan||0.48|
|12.||"Idhu Pattabhi Rama"||Shweta Mohan||2:37|
|13.||"Saptashwarathamarudham"||S. P. Balasubrahmanyam||1:10|
The film was released on 17 November 2011. The film was released in Tamil on 27 July 2012. The Malayalam version was released as well. Initially scheduled to be released on 10 November but was postponed.[when?] Producer Sai Babu has said that a good response has come from Malayalam movie lovers and was planned to release the Hindi version.
The film was promoted with posters attached in tricycles. P. V. V. Raghavendra Babu, general manager of Prathima Multiplex told "We want to bring back olden days of publicity for the latest mythological movie of Sri Rama Rajyam and get film lovers back to the theatres".
The film completed 50 days on 5 January 2012 in 49 centres at the box office.
The film received positive reviews from critics. CNN-IBN which gave a four stars, said "Sri Rama Rajyam is one film that the Telugu film industry can be proud of. Sri Rama Rajyam is a well-known story, so it's a challenge to remake such a classic, but Bapu's good work turns the remake into another classic. Filmgoers, who look for classics, should not miss this film".
Deccan Chronicle rated three stars explains "Superstar Balakrishna finally stepped into his legendary father NTR's shoes and impressed audiences playing the role of Lord Rama. Veteran director Bapu deserves all the praise he gets for remaking the classic Lava Kusa (1963) and retaining the soul of the original". NDTV described as "In all, Sri Rama Rajyam is a feel-good film that brilliantly showcases our ancient culture".
Oneindia.in noted "Sri Rama Rajyam is a feel good film that showcases our ancient culture, heritage and values. The way Bapu managed to make the film into a visual and musical delight is extraordinary and it is a film that can give you an enriching experience while entertaining you in good measure". Rediff gave three stars said "Kudos to Bapu and Saibabu for recreating the Ramayana magic on celluloid. Only Bapu, the veteran director, could have executed this mammoth task so well. Sri Ramarajyam is an optical feast. Go for it". Sify gave verdict as "Good" and says "The movie holds ample strength to live up to the expectations at the box office. Bapu and his associate Ramana does not deviate much from Lava Kusa, and they took great pains to see that the element of exaggeration is completely checked". The Hindu wrote: "The director Bapu should be applauded for re-inventing the mythological and using a glitzy starcast and getting an understated performance from all of them".
|Nandi Awards - 2011||Best Feature Film – Gold||Sai Babu||Won|
|Best Music Director||Ilaiyaraaja||Won|
|Best Make Up||P. Ram Babu||Won|
|Best Female Dubbing Artist||Sunitha||Won|
|59th Filmfare Awards South||Best Actress – Telugu||Nayanthara||Won|
|Best Female Playback Singer – Telugu||
|Best Lyricist – Telugu||
|1st South Indian International Movie Awards||SIIMA Award for Best Cinematographer (Telugu)||P. R. K. Raju||Won|
Director K. Viswanath compared the duo Bapu and Ramana to "technically perfect and smooth Rolls Royce". Novel of the film based on the screenplay was released in 2012. Rediff included the film in their list "Top Five Telugu Films of 2011".
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