Renowned Telugu producer D. Ramanaidu, who holds the record of producing films in the maximum number of Indian languages, breathed his last in Hyderabad on Wednesday. The Dadasaheb Phalke Award winner and Padma Bhushan awardee was 79. “Ramanaidu, who was undergoing treatment for prostate cancer, passed away at a private hospital. His body is being shifted to his studio for public to pay their last respects,” the veteran’s publicist told.
Born June 6, 1936, Ramanaidu’s journey as a co-producer started with 1963 Telugu film “Anuragam”. Next year, he made his solo debut as a producer with N.T. Rama Rao-starrer Telugu drama “Ramudu Bheemudu”. Some of his other popular Telugu films include “Prem Nagar”, “Jeevana Tarangalu”, “Soggadu”, “Kaliyuga Pandavulu”, “Coolie No 1” and “Ganesh” among others.
In 1989, he launched Ramanaidu Studios, followed by Ramanaidu Colour Lab and Cine Village. In a career lasting over five decades, he produced over 130 films in over 20 Indian languages. In Hindi, he produced films such as “Prem Nagar”, “Dildaar”, “Maqsad”, “Insaaf”, “Tohfa”, “Anari” and “Hum Aapke Dil Mein Rehte Hain”. He had also produced films in Tamil, Kannada, Malayalam, Oriya, Punjabi and English. Ramanaidu used to produce films under his home banner Suresh Productions, which has now been taken over by his eldest son D. Suresh Babu.
Besides a few Nandi and Filmfare awards, Ramanaidu was conferred the Dadasaheb Phalke and Padma Bhushan awards in 2009 and 2012 respectively. Between 1999 and 2004, he was associated with Telugu Desam Party. In many of his own productions, he was known for playing cameo roles and mostly frequently appeared in doctor and judge roles. Ramanaidu is survived by his sons Suresh Babu, Venkatesh Daggubati and grandsons Rana and Naga Chaitanya. (IANS)