1. Samarla Venkata Ranga Rao Naidu was born on 3rd of July 1918 in Nuzvidu of Andhra Pradesh.
2. His first film was Mana Desam (1949). Yes, the same film which launched NTR as an actor and then singer Ghantasala as music director.
3. In a career that spanned 25 years he acted in a total 162 films. 53 in Tamil and 109 in Telugu.
4. He earned many honors in his career and was lovingly referred to as “Viswa Nata Chakravarti” , “Nata Sarvabhouma”, “Nata Sekhara”, “Nata Simha”by his admirers.
He was the first Nata Sekhara before Superstar Krishna made it cool, and was the first one to be called Nata Simha Before Nandamuri Bala Krisha made it cool 😉
5. Baap of Method acting. The first ever Method actor in India.
He is the first method actor in India. Later came the generation of Sanjeev kumar, Kamal Hassan, Amitab bachan, and all those fine Kerala actors.
6. A people magnet and a personality loved by everyone.
SVR was recalled to be a soft spoken man with a good sense of humor and simple tastes by his peers and his co workers, which was the reason he was liked by every one, but whenever he was in a role he just didn’t act but actually lived that role in real life.
He talked, moved and behaved exactly like that character in the sets and at his home which often entertained people surrounding him. One reason why he was called a people magnet. That way he was most entertaining in the sets playing folklore characters like Nepala Mantrikudu or Gatokacha.
7. Won international awards before it was cool.
In 1963, He garnered the Best Actor Award for his portrayal of Kichaka in Nartanasala at the Afro-Asian Film Festival Held in Jakarta. You see, How many of our so called stars of the modern era accomplished this?
8. Every character he acted ended up being iconic thanks to his unusual acting skills.
Some of his notable roles include Akbar, Bhishma , Dhuryodhana, Yama, Ravana, Tandra Paparayudu , Bhoja , Daksha , Ghatotkacha , Harischandra, Hiranyakashipu , Kamsa , Keechaka , Mayasura , Narakasura , Rajaraja Narendra.
9. He was awarded the Rashtrapati Award five times!!
10. He directed just two movies, Both of them won a Nandi award each.
11. Only Indian actor to win the filmfare award, Rashtrapati Award, the Nandi awards, and international awards multiple times .
12. He was the highest paid actor in 50’s and was paid more than then established heroes like NTR & ANR.
The only actor of that era who didn’t play the hero and was paid more than the heroes.
13. He played the Akbar, Duryodhana, Harischchandra before NTR made them cool.
He rejected the some iconic hero roles because he felt that it would limit him as an artist. And you know to whom these roles went to. (Kaikala satyanarayana and NTR).
Observation: All the great artistic ventures in 50’s and 60’s had one thing in common. A collaboration of legends like SVR, NTR, ANR, nagi reddy, chakra pani, Bv reddy, Gummadi etc produced by gaints like Vijaya Vauhini Studios or Suresh productions.