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The US Post Service will honor Legendary Indian Actor Padma Vibhushan Akkineni Nageswara Rao (ANR) by issuing a postage stamp. It is an exceptional honor and the first ever to an Indian actor. This was announced by Akkineni Foundation of America (AFA). The Foundation will host a special Postal Stamp release ceremony in Dallas, Texas on September 20th, on Dr. ANR's Birthday to mark this tribute.
The widely acknowledged actor and humanitarian won the hearts of millions of people and influenced the Indian Cinema from the 50's to 80's with stellar performances. He also played pioneering role in building the Telugu Cinema Industry. AFA also plans to release the stamp in India at the first "International Akkineni Awards Ceremony" in the presence of ANR family members. The event hosted by AFA will be held on December 17th, 2014 at ANR College, Gudivada, Krishna district, Andhra Pradesh.
"It's is a rare honour and the first time in the history of the USA that an Indian movie actor getting this recognition. We are thankful to USPS for consenting to our request to issue this postal stamp in remembrance of Dr. Akkineni Nageswara Rao", Dr. Prasad Thotakura, AFA President said.
"I am deeply touched and so are other members of the Akkineni family by the issuance of this postage stamp, and I am deeply grateful to USPS for conferring one of America's highest honors to my father Akkineni Nageswara Rao" the legendary actor's son Nagarjuna Akkineni said. "While my father has been cited many times as being among the most adored artiste of all time, the recognition in his being portrayed on a U.S. postage stamp will rank as a great honor. It is certainly a big tribute to Indian cinema and our culture."
Combining influences from theatre era and the contemporary cinema performances with his own innovations, Dr Akkineni Nageswara Rao helped establish tremendous versatility in films - and in doing so, left behind an unforgettable mark on cinema across the globe that will always be remembered for generations to come.
Akkineni made his debut in films playing the lead actor's friend in the Tamil-Telugu Bilingual Dharmapatni in the year 1941. He was 17 at the time. He was noticed for his performance in folklore based movies and eventually got his first break for the 1950 movie 'Samsaram'. As an actor ANR has played a variety of roles ranging from a charming prince to a valiant soldier to a holy saint, and from a college student to a calm government officer. In mythological role he was a inspiring.
Akkineni Nageswara Rao was honoured with a number of awards including 3 Filmfares, Padma Vibhushan, Dada Saheb Phalke Award, Nandi Award, Kalaimamani and Life time Achievement Award from Telugu Association of North America.
ANR has acted in over 255 films in Telugu, Tamil and Hindi. A majority of his films were both commercial and critical successes. Apart from being a movie star, ANR was a prolific writer. Some of his prominent books include his autobiographical work, Nenu Na Jeevitham, the memoirs of his first visit to the USA, Nenu Choosina America, and the expression of his thoughts in his book, A Aalu.
ANR's final movie project was Manam that saw three generations of the Akkineni family including himself, his son Nagarjuna and grandsons Naga Chaitanya, Akhil in it. The movie is the biggest success of year 2014. The iconic actor bid adieu to the world on January 22, 2014.
However, Akkineni Foundation of America was founded to carry forward the principles and ideology of Dr. ANR's hard work, discipline, self-confidence, vision, philanthropy and community service. The foundation will institute awards on his name and honor people from different walks of life, who strive for better society. It will also conduct events that will carry forward his ideology in the areas of education, health care, selfless community service for a better society and passing the cultural values to the next generation.