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Renowned Telugu filmmaker Sattiraju Lakshmi Narayana aka Bapu died at his residence in Chennai on Sunday (August 31), his family said. The 80-year-old director is survived by two sons and a daughter. His last rites will be performed on Monday.
Addressing the media, Bapu's brother Sattiraju Shankar Narayana confirmed the news about his death. He said, "He passed away following a cardiac arrest. He was struggling with illness for the last few months."
Born Dec 15, 1933, Bapu started his career as a cartoonist for Telugu newspaper Andhra Patrika. His filmmaking career started with 1960 Telugu film Sakshi, whose story and dialogues were by his best friend Mullapudi Venkata Ramana. Bapu and Ramana worked together in several memorable Telugu films such as Mutyala Muggu, Mister Pellam, Pelli Pusthakam and Seetha Kalyanam.
An ardent devotee of Lord Ram, Bapu's stories were mostly inspired from the Ramayana. Some of his best films on Lord Ram include Sampoorna Ramayanam, Ramanjeneya Yuddham and Seetha Kalyanam. Bapu's last directorial was 2011 Telugu mythological drama Sri Rama Rajyam.
Ramana passed away a few months after the film's release. Since Ramana's demise, Bapu was not in his pink of health. "The death of Ramana came as a shock to my brother. He was shaken from the inside because it was the end of over 60 years of friendship," Bapu's brother said.
Bapu had also directed a few Hindi films such as Hum Paanch, Seeta Swayamwar, Woh Saat Din and Mera Dharam. In his over four-decade-long career, Bapu directed 51 films. He was honoured with the Padma Shri in 2013. He won the national awards twice and the Andhra Pradesh state Nandi Awards six times.
The sudden death of Bapu has shocked many celebrities in Telugu film industry. Soon after they heard about his sad demise, several stars took to their Twitter pages and shared their shock and sadness. We bring you their comments as wells some rare photos of Bapu. Continue to see them in the slideshow.
Bapu garu will always live with us through his paintings and beautiful movies. God bless #Bapu Remember spending wonderful times with bapu garu on the Godavari during the making of andala ramudu. May his soul rest in peace.
The great director who had an artistic approach towards cinema and an inspiration to many Bapu Garu. RIP sir.
The great Bapu garu has passed away. Artist, writer, filmmaker par excellence. Huge influence on many a generation! RIP sir.
RIP Bapu garu. Take a bow chief for the soul and respect you brought to Telugu cinema. Thank you. Will miss you.
Saddened by the demise of dir Bapu. Admired his work a lot & worked in Radha Kalyanam which got me a lot of awards. A genius. RIP sir.
Mohan Babu M
Disheartening news about the passing away of Sri.Bapu. Truly one of the great directors of TFI. Strength to his loves ones
Very sad to hear about #Bapu Garu. He was an inspiration for a lot of Directors. My @Godavari dir. #Shekhar kammula considers him his Guru..
Deeply saddened by the demise of Bapu Garu. A true legend. Will be my biggest honour to have been called a Bapu Bomma.. RIP sir
We all miss you BAAPU garu! I am sure RAMANA garu is very happy soul now! It's going to be BAAPU-RAMANEEYAM at heaven!
Varun Tej Konidela
RIP Bapu garu... Big loss to Tollywood.. One of the best director we'll ever have...
Great director great human being Bapu Saheb is no more. He was a great teacher, well wisher for me. Your movies will keep u always alive sir. RIP.
Devi Sri Prasad
Had d greatest honour of accompanying Bapu garu to his car at Gama Awards this year!! Greatest Legend! R.I.P. sir.
Telugu cinema loses yet another of its beloved sons. So long Bapu garu! Rest in Peace.
Only some people leave a legacy of teaching something new in their field! He definitely was one of them. RIP Bapu garu.
RIP Bapu garu. A legend rests. What an amazing artistic journey.
Sad to hear about Bapu sir. Was supposed to work with him couple years back. A genuine wonderful person he was. May his soul RIP.