SS Rajamouli is the undisputed number one director in India currently. He is the first South Indian director to achieve such fame across the nation. As he celebrates his birthday today, we look at the three films that led him to that position.
SS Rajamouli’s debut Student No 1 was a blockbuster film. Yet, the director was under-credited and his mentor K Raghavendra Rao got all the credit. The songs played a very crucial role in the movie’s success which was done under the senior director’s supervision. The result, despite blockbuster film, Rajamouli got no offers.
After two years of Student No 1, it was with another Jr NTR film that SS Rajamouli made his presence felt. Simhadri took the already massy young star Tarak to the zenith of stardom and established Rajamouli as a name to reckon with in TFI.
By the time Magadheera was announced, SS Rajamouli was one among the top three directors in Telugu cinema. He has had no outright failure unlike his contemporaries, but they were all in a similar zone as far as blockbuster movies range were considered.
With Magadheera, Rajamouli joined hands with a ‘Mega’ hero for the first time. He also toned down his ‘over’ mass a bit. The result was a match made in heaven with both masses and family audience flocking into cinemas. Magadheera put Rajamouli at the top, a place which has been his since then. The gap only widened with each release.
If Magadheera proved the worth of director SS Rajamouli and made him number one director, it is Eega that made him equivalent to a top star in Telugu cinema. Eega made Rajamouli a star-director, something unheard before in Telugu cinema.
Eega also opened up, the non-traditional Telugu market for Rajamouli. The film was a huge success in Tamil, and there was a proper recognition in Bollywood, even though it was a failure.
The three films mentioned above are very critical to the career of SS Rajamouli. The first one, in taking him to Magadheera, and making him number one Telugu director. The next two in setting up the mammoth Baahubali films that would eventually make him India’s biggest director. We wish the director a very Happy Birthday and hope the Baahubali movies are only the beginning of a new pan-Indian journey with TFI at its heart.