A veteran star in the South Indian film industry, Veeramachaneni Jagapati Rao Chowdary better known by screen name, Jagapati Babu is a renowned actor who has made name for himself in the Telugu, Tamil. Kannada and Malayalam film industries. With over 120 feature films to his credit, he is a stalwart actor in every sense of the word and the various honors and awards including 7 state Nandi Awards and 2 Filmfare Awards only underpins his superstar status. In a career spanning over 25 years, Jagapati Babu has worked with noted directors like S.V. Krishna Reddy
, Ram Gopal Varma
, K. Raghavendra Rao
, Krishna Vamsi
, and M. Raja.
Born in Machilipatnam, Andhra Pradesh, India, Jagapti Babu is the son of the veteran producer and director in the Telugu cinema industry, V. B. Rajendra Prasad. The actor grew up in Chennai before eventually making his mark in the Telugu cinema.
Jagapati Babu`s illustrious journey in the film industry began in 1974 as he made his acting debut with Manchi Manushulu as a child artist. The film directed and produced by his father, V.B. Rajendra Prasad was the remake of the super hit Hindi film Aa Gale Lag Jaa. 15 years later, the actor made his debut in a lead role with V. Madhusudhan Rao`s crime film, Simha Swapnam. The film co-starring Krishnam Raju, Jayasudha, and Vani Vishwanath and Shantipriya did not fare well at the box-office.
Coming into the 1990s, Jagapati Babu was still very much a newbie in the cine Industry and was struggling to make his mark. In his first movie of the year, Jagapati starred in Chinnari Muddula Papa, which was the remake of the 1987 English film, Three Men and a Baby. The film co-starring Sudhakar, and Sivaji Rajawas later remade in Hindi as Heyy Babyy in 2007. In his relentless struggle to make it big in the film industry, Jagapati continued to toil hard and in 1991 he appeared three films, viz. Pandirimancham, Parishkaram, and Jagannatakam but success eluded him.
By 1993, Jagapati Babu was a popular actor and his popularity increased manifold as he starred in the hit political thriller Telugu film, Gaayam, which was directed by the noted Bollywood director, Ram Gopal Varma
. The film co-starring Urmila Matondkar and Revathi got positive reviews from both audiences as well as the critics and Jagapati for his stellar performance won the Nandi Awards for Best Actor.
Over the next couple of years from 1995 to 1997, Jagapati Babu had 17 releases out which five films were remakes of either English or Tamil films and two films were inspired by a novel. His most notable performance came in Dongata (1997), which was the remake of the popular and hit Hollywood film French Kiss starring Meg Ryan and Kevin Kline. In his first release on the year in 1999, director Bhimaneni Srinivasa Rao
cast Jagapati Babu in his Telugu romance film Swapnalokam. The film, which was the remake of Kabhi Haan Kabhi Naa was an average earner.
In 2001, Jagapati Babu starred in Budget Padmanabhan, a Telugu remake of the Tamil film with the same name. The film directed by S.V. Krishna Reddy also featured Ramya Krishnan
in the lead role. Just like the Tamil film, the remake also received mixed to positive reviews. The actor continued his successful run in 2002 as his first movie of the year, Siva Rama Raju fared decently at the box office and Jagapati for his role as Siva Rama Raju got praises from the critics as well as the audience.
Between 2004 and 2005 the actor had seven releases but only three of them viz Kushi Kushiga (2004), Anukoukunda Oka Roju (2005) and That is Pandu (2006) were hits while other flopped at the box office. The actor`s next major hit came in 2007 as he starred in director Srivass` Telugu film titled Lakshyam. The film was not only a box office hit but it also won Jagapati Babu a Nandi Award as well as Filmfare Award for Best Supporting Actor. The actor had quite a dull period between 2006 and 2009; with back to back failures in 2009, the actor continued his struggle for a hit in 2010. His first movie of the year, Maa Nanna Chiranjeevi, a Telugu remake of the super hit Hollywood film The Pursuit of Happyness
despite is pre-release hyped tanked at the box-office.
His next major hit came in 2014 as he starred in the Telugu rom-com, Current Theega alongside Manchu Manoj, Rakul Preet Singh, and Sunny Leone. The film, which is the remake of the Tamil film, Varuthapadatha Valibar Sangam
got mostly positive reviews and was declared a box office hit. The actor had a terrific start to the year 2016 as he starred alongside Jr. NTR
, Rakul Preet Singh
, and Srinivas Avasarala in the Telugu action-drama film Nannaku Prematho. The film directed by Sukumar got positive reviews and grossed more than 68 crore INR within the first nine days of its release. The actor had a great start in 2018 as his first movie of the year Rangasthalam was a blockbuster. His other projects of the year include Saakshyam
, an action fantasy thriller directed by Sriwass. His other releases include Odiyan
(2018), Syeraa Narasimha Reddy
(2019) and Roberrt