wiki:Paluvayi Bhanumathi

Paluvayi Bhanumathi (b. 1924)

Aka Bhanumathi Ramakrishna. Born in Guntur Dist., AP. Actress-director and grande dame of the Telugu and Tamil cinemas. Her now legendary performances at the Vauhini and Gemini Studios were among their earliest post-WW2 bids for All-India Film industrial status. Major singing star of 40s/50s; later studio owner with her husband P.S. Ramakrishna Rao (Bharani Studios, 1947), scenarist, music composer, film-maker and popular author of ‘mother-in-law’ short stories (the Attagari Kathalu series). Film début as teenager in C. Pullaiah’s reformist melodrama Varavikrayam? as Kalindi, a daughter who commits suicide because her parents cannot afford her wedding dowry. Her first major success came in the bizarre role of a village girl who grows into a ‘society lady’ in B.N. Reddi’s Swargaseema. Mid-40s Telugu films, in addition to conventional mythologicals by Balaramaiah and Babu? (Krishna Prema?), often cast her in comedies dealing with anxieties about traditional (sometimes rural) cultures assimilating aspects of Western modernity, a subject central to much popular reform literature: in Y.V. Rao’s Tehsildar she wears high heels and attends a British tea party; Prasad’s ‘feminist’ Grihapravesham? opens with her playing badminton and confronting the misogynist hero.

This context, and her unique ability to function simultaneously in the reformist-social and the traditional mythological genres, was later used to remarkable effect in Nallathambi, the seminal DMK Film, and in the Gemini trilingual adventure drama, Apoorva Sahodarargal. Her incarnation of ‘tradition’, exemplified and stressed by her music, was later put to ideological use in the genre still most closely associated with her: ‘damsel-in-distress’ performances in MGR’s Robin Hood-derived vigilante films (Malaikallan, Alibabavum Narpatha Thirudargalum, Madurai Veeran). Her music drew on C. Ramchandra, Arabian folk (Swargaseema, Laila Majnu) and even Pat Boone, but she is best remembered for her versions of Thyagaraja’s kirtis and Purandaradasa’s bhajans, which led to her being nominated Principal of the Government College of Music in Madras in the mid-80s. Her songs and dances are featured in the compilation film, Chitramala (1985). Wrote her autobiography Naalo Neno (1993).

FILMOGRAPHY (* also d/ also music d): 1939: Varavikrayam; 1940: Malathi Madhavam; Dharmapatni; 1941: Bhaktimala; 1943: Garuda Garvabhangam; Krishna Prema; 1944: Tehsildar; 1945: Swargaseema; 1946: Grihapravesham: 1947: Ratnamala; 1948:  Guruvayoor Kesavan; Aniyara; 1978: Aravam; Rajamukthi; 1949: Laila Majnu; Raksharekha; Ratnakumar; Apoorva Sahodarargal/Nishan?; Nallathambi; Devamanohari; 1950: Apoorva Sahodarulu; 1951: Mangala; Malleeswari; 1952: Prema/ Kathal; Rani; 1953: Shamsheer; Chandirani*; 1954: Malaikallan; Aggiramudu; Chakrapani; Vipranarayana; 1955: Kalvanin Kadhali; Alibabavum Narpatha Thirudargalum; 1956: Rambayin Kadhali; Sadaram; Thaikku Pinn Tharam; Tenali Ramakrishna/Tenali? Raman; Madurai Veeran; Rangoon Radha; Chintamani; 1957: Ambikapathy; Makkalai Petra Maharasi; Nala Damayanti; Sarangadhara; Rani Lalithangi; Varudukavali/Manamagal? Thevai; 1958: Nadodi Mannan; 1959: Mani Mekalai; Bandaramudu/Adisaya? Thirudan; 1960: Raja Bhakti; Raja Desingu; 1961: Batasari/Kanal? Neer; 1962: Annai/ Penchina Prema; 1963: Anuragam; Arivali; Kalai Arasi; Kanchi Thalaivan; 1964: Bobbili Yuddham; Vivahabandham; 1965: Sarasa BA; Todu Needa; Antastulu; 1966: Palnati Yuddham; 1967: Pattathu Rani; Grihalakshmi*; Punyavati; Nai Roshni; 1970: Kadhal Jyothi; 1971: Mattilo Manikyam; 1972: Anta Mana Manchike*/; 1973: Vichitra Vivaham*; Kattilla Thottilla; 1974: Tatamma Kala; Mangalya Bhagyam; Ammayi Pelli*; Pathumatha Bandham; Swathi Nakshatram; Thayi Pirandhal; 1975: Pandanti Samsaram; Eduppar Kayi Pillai; Ippadiyum Oru Penn*/ ; 1976: Manamara Vazhthungal; Vanga Sambandhi Vanga*/; Manavadi Kosam*/; 1980: Rachayithri*/; Oke Naati Rathri*/; 1982: Bhakta Dhruva Markandeya*/; 1984: Mangammagari Manavudu; 1985: Muddula Manavaralu; 1986: Attagaru Swagatham; 1987: Mandala Dheesudu; 1988: Attagaru Zindabad; 1989: Bammamata Bangaru Pata; 1992: Periamma*/; Samrat Ashok; Peddarikam; 1993: Asadhyuralu.

Actor Director

Last modified 6 years ago Last modified on Jun 11, 2013, 9:17:24 AM