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Savitri Kommareddy (Telugu: సావిత్రి కొమ్మారెడ్డి)

Savitri-desibantu

Smt. Savitri Kommareddy(Telugu: సావిత్రి కొమ్మారెడ్డి) (born Savitri Nissankara; 6th December, 1935 – 26th December, 1981) was a popular Indian film actress. She is also known as director and producer. She had appeared in versatile roles among Telugu, Tamil, Kannada and Hindi language films. She was known for her liveliness and captivating performance, She called as one of the best actresses in Indian film industry.

Early life:

Savithri was born on December 6th, 1935 to a telugu speaking couple Nissankara Guruviah and Subhadhramma in Chirravuru near Tenali in Guntur, Madras Presidency, now part of Andhra Pradesh. Savithri has only one sibling, a sister, who was one year older than her. Her name was Maruthi. She lost her father when she was just 6 months. With her maternal uncle KommaReddy Venkata Rammaiah Chowdary’s support, she studied till third form eighth standard in Kasturibai Memorial School at Vijayawada, Krishna District. She learned music and Indian classical dance under Sista Purnayya Sasthri started at age of 8 and she performed Stage plays with drama troupes of “Arunodaya Natya Mandali”, and helped to find her way into the film industry.

Career:

She gave some public performances as a child artist in Vijayawada. Later, she worked in a theater company run by Nandamuri Taraka Ramarao. She also started her own company, the Navabharata Natya Mandali. Her best stage role was in Atma Vanchana written by Bucchi Babu.

In Telugu film Industry:

In 1950 Savithiri was introduced as a child artist in a telugu movie ‘Samsaram ‘. K.V. Chaudri helped her to enter the cinema industry and had a good positive response. She acted number of movie’s continuously in Tamil and Telugu. ‘Savithri’ turned South India’s Superstar after ‘Devadas’ which turned to be a mega hit movie.

She was bestowed into the film industry at a very young age (at the age of 12) as she got an offer in the film ‘Agni Pariksha’ in 1949. She merely missed the chance because she looked too young to play the role in that particular film. Soon after that, In 1950 Savithiri was introduced as a child artist in a telugu movie ‘Samsaram’, which was produced by the banner ‘Sadhana Chitra’ but again bad luck shoved off the role since she felt very abashed and tensed up to take through with Akkineni Nageswara Rao as he is a big star. As a result she was replaced by Pushpalatha but was offered a small role in that movie. When the film was released, the producers and directors recognized her inborn talent. She caught chances to act in films like ‘Sankranthi’, ‘Palleturu’ etc. She performed in a dance flick in the legendary film ‘Pathala Bhairavi’ in 1951. There was no looking back for Savithri, after she had performed as a second heroine in the film ‘Pelli Chesi Choodu’ in 1952 by L. V. Prasad.

She acted in memorable films like Pelli Chesi Choodu (1952), Palletooru (1952), Chandra Haram (1953), Devadasu (1953), Ardhangi (1955), Missamma(1955), Donga Ramudu (1955), Amara Deepam (1956), Mayabazaar (1957), Appu Chesi Pappu Kodu (1959), Sri Venkateswara Mahatyam (1960), Aradhana (1962), Gundamma Katha (1962), Rakta Tilakam (1963), Mooga Manasulu (1963), Poojaphalam (1964), Pandava Vanavasam (1965), Prana Mitrulu (1967), Varakatnam (1968), Maro Prapancham (1970) and Jagan Mohini (1978).

Of all Savithri’s movies Chivarakumigiledi is considered to be a magnum opus.But the film was a total financial failure. Apart from those films that are already mentioned there are some more great movies such as DongaRamudu(1956), Todikodallu(1957), Mangalya Balam(1958), Abhimanam(1958), Muripinche muvvalu(1960), Manchi Manasulu(1961), Doctor Chakravarthi(1964) and Devatha(1965) etc. These movies stand as a shining testimony to her versatality as an actress. These movies will find a mention in a list of all time great telugu movies.

In Tamil film Industry:

Savitri was a legendary actress in Tamil. She has paired opposite leading actors like Sivaji Ganesan and M. G. Ramachandran. Savithri acted her 100th film ‘Konjum Salangai’ happened to be paired with Gemini Ganesan. She was fondly called Nadigaiyar Thilagam (நடிகையர் திலகம்) in the Tamil film industry.

In Paasa Malar movie which she was paired opposite Gemini Ganesan and as a sister of Sivaji Ganesan and Navarathiri (நவராத்திரி) brought her accolades from all over pushing her to the top slot in the Tamil Film Industry. Kalathur Kannamma (1959), Missiyamma, Pasamalar (1961), Pava Mannippu (1961) etc. are some of her memorable classics in Tamil cinema.

In Hindi film Industry:

Savitri acted in few Hindi films like Bahut Din Huwe (1954), Ghar Basake Dekho (1963), Ganga Ki Lahren (1964), Balram Shri Krishna (1968).

In Kannada film Industry:

Savitri acted in few Kannada films towards the end of her career. She played the role of mother of Dr.Rajkumar in superhit films like Thaayige Thakka Maga (1978) and Ravichandra (1980). It was her longtime wish to act with Rajkumar. She also acted in Chandanada Gombe and Devaru Kottavara (1975).

In Malayalam film Industry:

Savithri acted in the following Malayalam films Nava Dhaara Chuli (1973), Anthony Punnyavalan (1978) and Ashwathama (1978) in her entire professional career.

As a Director and Producer:

Savithri was not only a distinguished actress but also a refined film director. She had directed films like Chinnari Papalu (1968), Chiranjeevi, Maathru Devatha and Vintha Samsaram in Telugu and a few films in Tamil. Her misfortune started with the film ‘Praptam’ (Mooga Manasulu in Telugu) the Tamil film, which was made under her own production and direction. The film took nearly five years to be completed and that pushed Savithri into debts. She would watch all the Hollywood movies and analyze them in an amazing manner. She loved Sophia Loren and Shirley McLain.

Personal life:

Savithri was married to the Tamil actor Gemini Ganesan in 1955, while she was acting in a movie called “Manampol Mangalyam” with Gemini during that time. She declared it publicly three years after the wedding.It was revealed subsequently when Savithri gave her photo for the Lux soap advertisement, as it was signed as ‘Savithri Ganesh’ at the backside of the photograph. They were blessed with two children Vijaya Chamundeswari and Sathish Kumar.

Savitri was a strict, disciplined and compassionate mother. Because of her work pressure she hardly found some time to spend with her kids. Even then she used to capture some time out of her hectic schedule and spent a good quality of time with her kids. She gave her children complete liberty while insuring certain restrictions on them. She never raised hands at her children. She loved her kids immeasurably. Since there was no availability of televisions at that time, she arranged a 16mm projector, to show the films that she had acted to her kids.

Death:

On the course of her travel to Mysore for a shooting she broke down, went into coma, and was hurried back to Chennai where her children admitted her in a hospital. There she lost her speech and left this world on 26th, December 1981 at Madras. She left her screen life as an eternal model.

Awards and honours:

In 1960, She has received the President’s Rashtrapati Award for her performance in the film Chivaraku Migiledi(1960).

State Awards:

  • Kalaimamani from the Government of Tamil Nadu
  • Nata Siromani by the Government of Andhra Pradesh.

Other honors:

  • Maha Nati (Supreme Actress) from Yuvathi Mandali of Andhra Pradesh
  • Nadigayar Thilakam (Greatest Actress) from Tamil Film Industry

Filmfare Awards:

Savithri was recepient of the first Best Actress “Fimfare Award South” for “Devadasu“. She also won the most Filmfare Best Actress Awards, five for the films Devadasu (1953), Maya Bazar (1957), Gundamma Katha (1962), Doctor Chakravarthy (1964), Maro Prapancham (1970).

Filmography

YearCinemaLanguage
1950Samsaram(సంసారం)
Telugu
1951Patala Bhairavi(పాతాళ భైరవి)
Telugu
1951Roopavathi(రూపవతి)Telugu
1951Patala Bhairavi( படல பைரவி)
Tamil
1952Aadarsham(ఆదర్శం)Telugu
1952Palletooru(పల్లెటూరు)
Telugu
1952Pelli Chesi Choodu(పెళ్లి చేసి చూడు)
Telugu
1952Priyuralu(ప్రియురాలు)Telugu
1952Sankranthi(సంక్రాంతి)Telugu
1952Shanthi(శాంతి)Telugu
1952Kalyanam Panni Paar(கல்யாணம் பண்ணி பார்)
Tamil
1953Alludu Chesina Allari(అల్లుడు చేసిన అల్లరి)Telugu
1953Bratuku Theruvu(బ్రతుకు తెరువు)
Telugu
1953Devadasu(దేవదాసు)
Telugu
1953Kodarikam(కోడరికం)Telugu
1953Paropakaram(పరోపకారం)Telugu
1953Pempudu Koduku(పెంపుడు కొడుకు)Telugu
1953Pratigna(ప్రతిజ్ఞ)
Telugu
1953Devadas(தேவதாஸ்)
Tamil
1953Manampol Mangalyam(மனம்போல் மாங்கல்யம்)Tamil
1953Parobakaram(பரோபகாரம்)Tamil
1953Pratignya(ப்ரடிஞ்ய)Tamil
1953Vanjam(வஞ்சம்)Tamil
1954Menarikam(మేనరికం)
Telugu
1954Parivartana(పరివర్తన)
Telugu
1954Chandraharam(சன்றஹர்ரம்)
Tamil
1954Kudumbam(குடும்பம்)Tamil
1954Sugam Enge(சுகம் எங்கே)Tamil
1955Ardhangi(అర్ధాంగి)
Telugu
1955Donga Ramudu(దొంగ రాముడు)
Telugu
1955Kanyasulkam(కన్యాశుల్కం)
Telugu
1955Missamma(మిస్సమ్మ)
Telugu
1955Santanam(సంతానం)
Telugu
1955Chella Pillai(செல்ல பிள்ளை)Tamil
1955Gomathiyin Kathalin(கோமதியின் காதலின்)Tamil
1955Guna Sundari(குண சுந்தரி)Tamil
1955Maheshwari(மகேஸ்வரி)Tamil
1955Maman Magal (மாமன் மகள்)Tamil
1955Missamma(மிஸ்ஸம்மா)
Tamil
1955Santhanam(சந்தனம்)Tamil
1956Amara Deepam(అమర దీపం)
Telugu
1956Bhale Ramudu(భలే రాముడు)
Telugu
1956Charanadaasi(చరణదాసి)
Telugu
1956Amara Deepam(அமர தீபம்)
Tamil
1956Madarakula Manikkam(மடரகுல மாணிக்கம்)
Tamil
1956Pennin Perumayi(பெண்ணின் பெருமாயி)
Tamil
1956Prema Pasam(பிரேமா பாசம்)
Tamil
1957Bhale Ammayilu(భలే అమ్మాయిలు)
Telugu
1957Kutumba Gowravam(కుటుంబ గౌరవం)
Telugu
1957Maya Bazaar(మాయ బజార్)
Telugu
1957M.L.A.(ఎం.ఎల్.ఎ.)
Telugu
1957Sowbhagyavathi(సౌభాగ్యవతి)
Telugu
1957Thodi Kodallu(తోడి కోడళ్ళు)
Telugu
1957Engelveettu Mahalakshmi(என்கேல்வீட்டு மகாலட்சுமி)
Tamil
1957Iru Sahodarigal(இரு சஹோடரிகள்)
Tamil
1957Karpukarasi(கற்புக்கரசி)
Tamil
1957Mahadevi(மகாதேவி)
Tamil
1957Maya Bazaar(மாயா பஜார்)
Tamil
1957Patini Deivam(படிநி தெய்வம்)
Tamil
1957Vananga Mudi(வணங்க முடி)
Tamil
1957Yar Paiyan(யார் பையன்)
Tamil
1958Appu Chesi Pappu Koodu(అప్పు చేసి పప్పు కూడు)
Telugu
1958Inti Guttu(ఇంటిగుట్టు)
Telugu
1958Karthavarayuni Katha(కార్తవరాయుని కథ)
Telugu
1958Pathi Bhkathi(పతి భక్తి)
Telugu
1958Annaylin Aanaya(அன்னைய்ளின் ஆணைய)
Tamil
1958Kadanvaangi Kalyanam(கடன்வாங்கி கல்யாணம்)
Tamil
1958Kattavarayan(கட்டவாராயண்)
Tamil
1958Kudumba Gowravam(குடும்ப கெளரவம்)
Tamil
1958Maana Malaay(மான மலாய்)
Tamil
1958Panai Pidita Bhagyasali(பனை பிடிட பாஞசளி)
Tamil
1958Pathi Bhakthi(பத்தி பக்தி)
Tamil
1958Thirumanam(திருமணம்)
Tamil
1959Banda Ramudu(బండ రాముడు)
Telugu
1959Bhagya devatha(భాగ్య దేవత)
Telugu
1959Mangalya Balam(మాంగల్య బలం)
Telugu
1959Adhisaya Thirudan(அதிசய திருடன்)
Tamil
1959Bhagya Devathai(பாக்ய தேவதை)
Tamil
1959Manjal Magimai(மஞ்சள் மகிமை)
Tamil
1960Abhimaanam(అభిమానం)
Telugu
1960Chivaraku Migiledi(చివరకు మిగిలేది)
Telugu
1960Deepavali(దీపావళి )
Telugu
1960Kumkuma Rekha(కుంకుమ రేఖ)
Telugu
1960Maa Babu(మా బాబు)
Telugu
1960MamaKu Thagga Alludu(మామకు తగ్గ అల్లుడు)
Telugu
1960Nammina Bantu(నమ్మిన బంటు)
Telugu
1960Sri Venkateshwara Mahatyam(శ్రీ వెంకటేశ్వర మహత్యం)
Telugu
1960Vimala(విమల)
Telugu
1960Kalathoor Kannama(களத்தூர் கன்னம)
Tamil
1960Kuravanchi(குறவஞ்சி)
Tamil
1960Pattaliyan Vetri(பட்டலியன் வெற்றி)
Tamil
1960Pudiya Paadai(புதிய பாடை)
Tamil
1961Aadarsha Sahodarulu(ఆదర్శ సహోదరులు)
Telugu
1961Kalisi Unte Kaladu Sukham(కలిసి ఉంటే కలదు సుఖం)
Telugu
1961Velugu Needalu(వెలుగు నీడలు)
Telugu
1961Anbu Magan(அன்பு மகன்)
Tamil
1961Ellam Unakkaga(அன்பு மகன்)
Tamil
1961Kappalottiya Thamizhan(கப்பலோட்டிய தமிழன்)
Tamil
1961Pasamalar(பாசமலர்)
Tamil
1961Pavamannipu(பாவமன்னிப்பு)
Tamil
1961Thooya Ullam(தூய உள்ளம்)
Tamil
1962Aaradhana(ఆరాధన)
Telugu
1962Aathma Bandhuvu(ఆత్మ బంధువు)
Telugu
1962Andi Andani Prema(అందీ అందని ప్రేమ)
Telugu
1962Gundamma Katha(గుండమ్మ కథ)
Telugu
1962Kalimi Lemulu(కలిమి లేములు)
Telugu
1962Manchi Manasulu(మంచి మనసులు)
Telugu
1962Muripinche Muvvalu(మురిపించే మువ్వలు)
Telugu
1962Raktha Sambandham(రక్త సంబంధం)
Telugu
1962Siri Sampadalu(సిరి సంపదలు)
Telugu
1962Bandha Pasam(பந்தா பாசம்)
Tamil
1962Ellorum Vazha Vendum(எல்லோரும் வழ வேண்டும்)
Tamil
1962Indra En Selvam(ஈன்ற என் செல்வம்)
Tamil
1962Kathiruntha Kangal(காத்திருந்த கண்கள்)
Tamil
1962Konjum Salangai(கொஞ்சும் சலங்கை)
Tamil
1962Manithan Maravillai(மனிதன் மாறவில்லை)
Tamil
1962Neeya Naana(நீயா நானா)
Tamil
1962Padithal Mattum Podhuma(படித்தல் மட்டும் போதுமா)
Tamil
1962Parthal Pasi Theerum(பார்த்தல் பசி தீரும்)
Tamil
1962Pathakanikkai(பதகநிக்கை)
Tamil
1962Vadivukku Valaikappu(வடிவுக்கு வளைகாப்பு)
Tamil
1963Chaduvukunna Ammayilu(చదువుకున్న అమ్మాయిలు)
Telugu
1963Karna(కర్ణ)
Telugu
1963Mamakaram(మమకారం)
Telugu
1963Muggurammayilu Moodu Hathyalu(ముగ్గురమ్మాయిలు మూడు హత్యలు)
Telugu
1963Narthanashala(నర్తనశాల)
Telugu
1963Thobuttuvulu(తోబుట్టువులు)
Telugu
1963Karpagam(கற்பகம்)
Tamil
1963Parisu(பரிசு)
Tamil
1963Raktha Thilagam(ரக்த திலகம்)
Tamil
1964Doctor Chakravarthy(డాక్టర్ చక్రవర్తి)
Telugu
1964Mooga Manasulu(మూగ మనసులు)
Telugu
1964Pathivratha(పతివ్రత)
Telugu
1964Pooja Phalam(పూజాఫలం)
Telugu
1964Ayiram Roopai(ஆயிரம் ரூபாய்)
Tamil
1964Kai Kodutha Deivam(கை கொடுத்த தெய்வம்)
Tamil
1964Karnan(கர்ணன்)
Tamil
1964Navarathiri(நவராத்திரி)
Tamil
1964Vettaikaran(வேட்டைக்காரன்)
Tamil
1965Devatha(దేవత)
Telugu
1965Manushulu Mamathalu(మనుషులు మమతలు)
Telugu
1965Naadee Aada Janme(నాదీ ఆడ జన్మే)
Telugu
1965Pandava Vanavasam(పాండవ వనవాసం)
Telugu
1965Shiva Leelalu(శివ లీలలు)
Telugu
1965Sumangali(సుమంగళి)
Telugu
1965Hello Mr. Zamindar(ஹலோ மிஸ்டர். சமிந்தர்)
Tamil
1965Pandava Vanavasam(பண்டவ வனவாசம்)
Tamil
1965Poojaikku Vanthamalar(பூஜைக்கு வந்தமலர்)
Tamil
1965Thiruvilayadal(திருவிளையாடல்)
Tamil
1965Vallavanukku Vallavan(வல்லவனுக்கு வல்லவன்)
Tamil
1966Bhaktha Pothana(భక్త పోతన)
Telugu
1966Manase Mandiram(మనసే మందిరం)
Telugu
1966Monagallku Monagadu(మొనగాళ్ళకు మొనగాడు)
Telugu
1966Navarathri(నవరాత్రి)
Telugu
1966Annavin Aasai(அண்ணாவின் ஆசை)
Tamil
1966Saraswati Sabadam(சரஸ்வதி சபதம்)
Tamil
1966Thattungal Thirakka Padum(தட்டுங்கள் திறக்க படும்)
Tamil
1967Kanchu Kota(కంచు కోట)
Telugu
1967Nirdoshi(నిర్దోషి)
Telugu
1967Prana Mithrulu(ప్రాణ మిత్రులు)
Telugu
1967Ummadi Kutumbam(ఉమ్మడి కుటుంబం)
Telugu
1967Kandan Karunai(கண்டன் கருணை)
Tamil
1967Seetha(சீத)
Tamil
1967Thiruvaruth Chelvar(திருவறுத் செல்வர்)
Tamil
1968Bandhavyalu(బాంధవ్యాలు)
Telugu
1968Chinnari Paapalu(చిన్నారి పాపలు)
Telugu
1968Jeevithalu(జీవితాలు)
Telugu
1968Mooga Jeevulu(మూగ జీవులు)
Telugu
1968Thalli Prema(తల్లి ప్రేమ)
Telugu
1968Varakatnam(వరకట్నం)
Telugu
1969Chiranjeevi(చిరంజీవి)
Telugu
1969Mathrudevatha(మాతృదేవత)
Telugu
1969Vichithra Kutumbam(విచిత్ర కుటుంబం)
Telugu
1969Kuzhandai Ullam(குழந்தை உள்ளம்)
Tamil
1970Kodalu Diddina Kaapuram(కోడలు దిద్దిన కాపురం)
Telugu
1970Maro Prapancham(మరో ప్రపంచం)
Telugu
1970Pettandarlu(పెత్తందార్లు)
Telugu
1970Thallitandrulu(తల్లి తండ్రులు)
Telugu
1970C.I.D. Shankar(சி.இ.டி.ஷங்கர் )
Tamil
1970Thirudatha Thirudan(திருடாத திருடன்)
Tamil
1971Nindu Dampathulu(నిండు దంపతులు)
Telugu
1971Thalli Koothuru(తల్లి కూతురు)
Telugu
1971Vichithra Dampathyam(విచిత్ర దాంపత్యం)
Telugu
1971Annai Valankanni(அன்னை வளங்கண்ணி)
Tamil
1971Praptham(ப்ராப்தம்)
Tamil
1972Agathiyar(அகத்தியர்)
Tamil
1972Jakkamma(ஜக்கம்மா)
Tamil
1972Puguntha Veedu(புகுந்த வீடு)
Tamil
1972Thaikku Oru Pillai(தாய்க்கு ஒரு பிள்ளை)
Tamil
1973Baghdad Perazhagi(பக்ஹ்டாத் பேரழகி)
Tamil
1973Engal Thai(எங்கள் தை)
Tamil
1973Manjul Kumkumam(மஞ்சுள கும்குமம்)
Tamil
1973Pitha Manam Pithu(பித்த மனம் பித்து)
Tamil
1973Surya Kanthi(சூர்யா காந்தி)
Tamil
1973Veettu Mapllai(வீட்டு மப்ல்லை)
Tamil
1974Akkaraipachai(அக்கரைபச்சை)
Tamil
1974Pudavellum(புடவெல்லும்)
Tamil
1975Antharangam(அந்தரங்கம்)
Tamil
1975Agra Haarathi Khajuthai(ஆக்ரா ஹாரதி க்ஹசுதை)
Tamil
1975Puthu Vellam(புது வெள்ளம்)
Tamil
1978Ashwathama(ಅಶ್ವಥಮ)Kannada
1978Vattathukkul Sthuram (வட்டத்துக்குள் சதுரம்)Tamil
1979Amar Deep (अमर दीप)
Hindi
1979Chandanada Gombe(ಚಂದನದ ಗೊಂಬೆ)Kannada
1979Allaudinaum Arputha Vilakkum(அல்ளுடினும் அற்புத விளக்கும்)Tamil
1979Thaayige Thakka Maga(ತಾಯಿಗೆ ತಕ್ಕ ಮಗ)Kannada
1979Gorintaku(గోరింటాకు)Telugu
1980Circus Ramudu(సర్కస్ రాముడు)Telugu
1980Ravi Chandra(ರವಿ ಚಂದ್ರ)Kannada
1981Andarikante Monagadu(అందరికంటే మొనగాడు)Telugu
1981Pavitra Prema(పవిత్ర ప్రేమ)Telugu

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