The Kakinada born legendary actress, gave us a million reasons to love her despite her negative portrayals in the movies and here are a few things you need to know about her.
1. Talents at a young age.
Suryakantham, was very much inclined towards dancing and singing and was trained in these by the age of 6!
2. She started off as a dancer.
Her career in Tollywood started as a dancer in the Hindi movie Chandralekha, where she was paid ₹75 for her job!
3. Her first film as an actress – Narada Naradi.
Her acting career started off by her playing a role in the movie Narada Naradi! But the roles she was offered after, were not satisfying the artist in her!
4. Turning down a dream offer.
Suryakantham watched many Bollywood movies and wanted to act in them too! She was a great fan of Ashok Kumar and Leela Chitnis and could rattle off their dialogues superbly! When she was offered the role of a female lead in a Bollywood movie because the previous heroine was removed, she turned it down saying “I can’t live on the unhappiness of other artists”. When she was approached for a lead role, she unfortunately met with an accident which left her face scarred taking away her opportunity!
5. The role that brought out the best of her.
For the movie Samsaram, she was offered the role of a cruel mother-in-law!
What she delivered on screen for this movie, paved way for the successful career that was waiting ahead! She was famous for her mean gestures and whip-like sarcastic dialogues!
6. A Director’s Actress.
Top notch directors like Nagi Redyy and Chakrapani never dared to do a movie without her! She was every director’s ideal character artist!She was known to shine in her role with however great artist she performed with!
7. Gundamma Katha – An exceptional movie that was created just for Suryakantham.
Nagi Reddy and Chakrapani together directed Gundamma Katha, a movie that will remain in the hearts of every Telugu movie lover! It is a movie that revolved around a character artist and the best of the best actors were casted to support this already powerful role!
8. When she takes off the mask of a cruel mother in law.
Suryakantham, in real life is a very soft spoken and a kind hearted soul! She was adored and loved by all of the Tollywood fraternity and she was ever grateful to her directors and producers all the time! She cared for many orphan children and even known to have left them a good amount of charity!
9. Partners in crime, The on-screen duo who will never be forgotten.
Some pairs just hit it off and are loved on screen by everyone! Suryakantham and Chayadevi duo are much loved and also Suryakantham and Ramana Reddy who played the advisor to her cruel plots in many movies! She was a hit with master-comedian Relangi too !
10. A Generous Heart.
Suryakantham was known for her kind and generous heart! She made sure that she contributed to the Andhra Pradesh Stage Artists Association every year as she knew the struggles of making a successful career! She donated to many service-organizations and is a well-known philanthrophist.The greatest human service she performed was to counsel naïve and gullible young girls who fell prey to tricksters who promised them roles in movies and deserted them. She gave them sound advice and reached them home safely!
11. Tamil and Hindi Films.
The fantastic and versatile actress also acted in 49 Tamil movies and also in movies like Do Dulhein, Bahut Din Hue and accomplished her goal of acting in Bollywood!
12. Awards and more.
She has won many prestigious awards such as Mahanati Savitri Memorial Award, and has earned titles like Haasya Natee Siromani, etc!