20 October 1937
|Died||14 February 1983 (aged 45)|
|Occupation||Hero, Actor, Comedian|
|Spouse(s)||Lakshmi Ammalu Punyamurthula|
|Children||Nagendra (Nagi) Babu Punyamurthula|
Mahesh Babu Punyamurthula
|Parent(s)||Punyamurthula Umamaheswara Rao|
|Awards||Filmfare Awards South|
Raja Babu (born Punyamurthula Appalaraju; 20 October 1937 – 14 February 1983) was an Indian film hero, actor, comedian known for his works predominantly in Telugu cinema. Noted as one of the finest Indian comedians, a 9 ft bronze statue of Rajababu was unveiled in his birthplace of Rajahmundry, Andhra Pradesh.
He was born in Rajamundry, East Godavari District, Andhra Pradesh to Punyamurthula Umamaheswara Rao and Ramanamma as Appala Raju. His brothers are also noted comedians, Chitti Babu Punyamurthula and Ananth Babu. He completed his Intermediate (10+2) education and successfully completed Teacher Training Course. He worked for sometime as a Telugu teacher after that. During that period, he used to act in dramas like Kukka Pilla Dorikindi, Naalugilla Chaavadi and Alluri Sitarama Raju.
Garikapati Raja Rao invited Babu after seeing his acting skills in dramas who worked for Mr. Gayudu. Babu reached Madras in 1960 and initially lived on tuitions. Film Director Addala Narayana Rao gave him a chance to act in his film Samajam in 1960. Babu was known for his slapstick comedy roles. He acted in record 589 movies in less than 20 years.
He has acted as the hero in Tata Manavadu, Pichodi Pelli, Thirupathi, Evariki Vare Yamuna Teere, Manishi Rodduna Paddadu. Leela Rani, Prasanna Rani, Gitanjali and Rama Prabha played with him as his female counterparts. But it was Ramaprabha who had a major share in his career playing opposite him and they were considered as the best comedy duo.
The comedy song Vinara Suramma Kooturu Moguda Vishayam Chebutanu featured by the duo in the film Illu Illalu went on to become the highlight of the entire film and was heard everywhere.
He portrayed the lead role of Giri, grandson (Manavadu) in the film Tata Manavadu directed by Dasari Narayana Rao and teaches a lesson to his father. The cast included S. V. Ranga Rao and Anjali Devi. He produced a few films under Bob and Bob Productions, including Evariki Vaare Yamuna Teeru and Manishi Rodduna Paddadu.
Raja Babu married Lakshmi Ammalu (sister-in-law of writer Sri Sri) in 1965 and they have two children: Nagendra Babu and Mahesh Babu. He has four brothers, among them Chitti Babu and Ananth Babu, who are film actors and television artists. He has five sisters. Raja Babu gave in to drinking heavily and died of cancer.
|1966||Paramanandayya Shishyula Katha||Telugu||Sishya|
|1968||Manishi Rodduna Paddadu||Telugu||Hero|
|1970||Kodalu Diddina Kapuram||Telugu|
|1971||Bomma Borusa||Telugu||Appula Appa Rao|
|1972||Tata Manavadu||Telugu||Grandson Giri|
|1973||Andala Ramudu||Telugu||Appa Rao|
|1974||Alluri Seetharama Raju||Telugu|
|1974||Evariki Vare Yamuna Theere||Telugu|
|1981||Gadasari Attaha Sogasari Kodalu||Telugu|
- Ten awards for Best Comedian
- Fifteen Filmfare awards for Best Actor in a Comic Role
- "Andhra Pradesh / Rajahmundry News : Rajababu statue unveiled". Chennai, India: The Hindu. 10 April 2011. Retrieved 4 September 2012.
- "Raj Babu Punyamurthula :: Haasya Nata Chakravarthi". Rajbabu.crosscity.com. Retrieved 4 September 2012.
- Chowdhary, Y. Sunita (16 September 2012). "Art imitates life". The Hindu. Chennai, India.
- "Ananth Babu". archive.is. Archived from the original on 3 February 2013.CS1 maint: bot: original URL status unknown (link)
- "Best Comedians Of Tollywood 1 - Business of Tollywood". Business of Tollywood. Archived from the original on 5 December 2013.
- Staff Reporter. "Rajababu statue unveiled". The Hindu.
- y. sunita chowdhary. "Art imitates life". The Hindu.