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October 25, 2010

Telugu comedians – One of their type in the world – Part - III

11. Rajendra Prasad: An engineering graduate Rajendra Prasad is a well recognized telugu comedy actor born on 19 July 1956 in Nimmakuru, Andhra Pradesh.

Ladies Tailor, earned him good name for his comedy, and this movie was directed by Vamsy. He had acted more than two hundred movies in Telugu and Tamil industries. The movie Aha Na Pellanta is one of the his remarkable movies.  This movie was directed by Jandhyala. The movies such as Rendu Rellu Aaru, Donga Kollu, Kobbari Bondam, Iddaru Pellala Muddula Police, April 1st Vidudhala, Rajendrudu Gajendrudu, Quick Gun Murugan are some of the remarkable comedy roles played by Rajendra Prasad.

The movies Appula Apparao and Aa Okkati Aadakku are considered to be all time comedy hits with full length comedy throughout the movie. Both the movies are directed by EVV Satyanarayana. Rajendra Prasad honored with number of awards in which fans call him ‘Natakiriti’ and he had also received Nandi Awards for best actor for Erra Mandaram and Aa Naluguru movies.

12. Babu Mohan: Babu mohan is one of the remarkable names in telugu cinema industry as a top telugu comedian. His memorable comedy roles with his close friend Kota Srinivasa Rao always results a remarkable comedy scenes.

Babu mohan was born in Balapala, Warangal district Andhra Pradesh. His full name is Kasturi Babu Mohan Rao. He faced many problems due to his appearance and in spite of that, with his strong determination and hard work he got selected as a government employee in revenue department. He is also the only comedian who got elected twice to Legislative Assembly of Andhra Pradesh and worked as one of the cabinet ministers.

Babu mohan film career begin with a movie ‘ee prasnaku baduledi’. The movie ‘Mamagaru’ earned him good name and fame as a comedian. The remarkable character in Jamba Lakidi Pamba movie as a class teacher to all telugu comedians is one of the most remarkable comedy scenes.

13. L.B. Sriram: entry into Film Industry progressed step by step. After proving himself as a playwright and actor for 20 years through his family’s Mahati Theatre Society, he took the plunge into films as Screen writer in 1988.

L.B. Sriram wrote dialogues for over 40 films like April 1st Vidudhala, Appula Appa Rao, Seetharatnamgari Abbayi, Hello Brother and Hitler most of which had a successful run in theaters. He was very successful, and received several awards and titles. His play Prapancha Tantram was selected by Akashvani and was broadcast on the national hook-up in almost all languages in 1991.

Sriram's acting career started as a guest appearance in several films. But, he got a break as an actor in the year 2000 with the movie Chaala Bagundi which was directed by E.V.V. Satyanarayana. Immediately afterwardly  he got an opportunity to do a sentimentally emotional film Ammo Okato Thareekhu based on his own play Onteddubandi.

14. Junior Venu Madhav: The actor is famous for his comic roles and his mimicry talent. Venu appeared in a number of Telugu, Malayalam and Tamil films starting his career with Sampradhayam by S.V. Krishna Reddy. Venu acted in Telugu film Master (1997) where he played a minor role. In 2006 Venu played a secretary of a beggar’s association in Puri Jagannath's supehit film Pokiri (2006) He played the role to perfection and he is known for his comic timing and the ability for his comic timing. Venu has also appeared as a lead hero for films like Hungama, Bhukailas, and Premabhishekam. The actor has also anchored various Telugu television shows.

15. Krishna Bhagavan:  is a popular actor in Tollywood, who has acted more than 100 films as a comedian. At the start of  his career Bhagavan did a film , called Maharshi , for Sravanti Ravi Kishore, along with Raghava, Shanthi Priya and Ram Jagan. This film was directed by Vamsy. After That he did April 1 Vidudala , Which was directed by Vamsy. He has also written the script for that film.

His career as an actor did not catch speed until he did the role of Babji in the Television Serial Vasantha Kokila, Directed by his friend Uppalapati Narayana Rao' This role brought him into limelight and also won the Andhra Pradesh State Nandi Award for his performance. After that his career sped up with the movies Avunu Valliddaru Ista Paddaru, Kabaddi Kabaddi.

After becoming popular Comedian, Krishna Bhagavan is getting offers as solo hero and acted in John Appa Rao 40 Plus, Bommana Brothers Chandana Sisters, Mr. Girisham.

October 17, 2010

Telugu comedians – One of their type in the world – Part - II

6. Kondavalasa:  Lakshmanarao Popularly known as Kondavalasa is a popular Telugu Drama and Cine Actor who is famous as a Comedian.

Before coming into films Kondavalasa was a popular Drama Artist, who has given many stage performance. Renowned Director Vamshi brought him into lime light by giving him an opportunity in his hit film Avunu Valliddaru Ishta Paddaru. After That he acted many Telugu Movies and got his own Identity as a actor with a terrific sense of timing.

7. M. S. Narayana: is one of the top telugu comedians of telugu movie industry. He is well known for his own way of comedy with his facial expressions, his body language exactly suits to the character. Before coming into movies he used to work as a Lecturer in in K.G.R.L College, Bheemavaram. He is one of the regular comedians of most of the top telugu movie directors.

The comedy roles played by him suits to the situation with his own way of facial expressions and in most of the movies he played as a drinker. As a drinker he played number of roles and all are remarkable. The comedy roles played by him in the movie Ottesi cheputunna as Reddy Naidu makes telugu comedy lovers enjoy a lot

8. Naresh: Naresh's mother directed him in the starring role Prema Sankellu (1982), a remake of Love Story (1981 film) but the film didn't become a hit, despite the enormous success of the music. His other film Naalugu Stamabhalata (1982) that year became a hit. Naresh also acted in many comedy movies which were big hits at the box office. Srivariki Premalekha a movie that as directed by Jandhyala  cappulted into the category of comedy actor/hero category that he made his genre for more than 1.5 decades. He also acted as a women in the classic comedy movie “chitram Ballare vichitram”

9. Vellu: Suthivelu Aka Kurumaddali Lakshmi Narasimha Rao is a very popular telugu comedian, who acted in more than 200 films.

Sithivelu is a popular cine comedian during 1980 to 2000 in Tollywood. He is famous for his timing dialogues and expressions , particularly in Director Jandhyala's comedy films. His combination with Suthi Veerabhadrarao is very popular that both of them were called as Suthi Brothers.

During his childhood, as he was very lean,  he was called  Velu Which means finger in Telugu Language. His Role name in the film Naalugu Stambhalata is Suthi , so after the tremendous success of Naalugu Stambhalata , people started him calling as Suthi + Velu = Suthivelu.

10. Sutti Veerabadra Rao:  is one of the popular names in telugu cinema industry as a top comedian. His combination of him with Brahmanandam and Kota Srinivasa Rao  had always always made for a memorable comedy scene. He acted more than two hundred films with most of them are remarkable and well received by all telugu comedy lovers Jandhyala the famous mivie script writer and comedy director and Sutti Veerabhadra Rao are classmates.
Sutti veerabhadra rao entered into telugu cinema industry in the movie Jatara but he is well recognized by the movie Naalugu Sthambaalata which was directed by his friend and classmate Jandhyala.

Most of his remarkable comedy roles are under Jandhyala’s direction, some of the movies such as Aha Naa Pellanta, Naalugu Sthambhalaata, Srivariki Premalekha, Rendu Rellu Aaru, Babai Abbai, Choopulu Kalasina Subhavela and many more.

Telugu comedians – One of their type in the world – Part - I

Telugu industry is blessed with some of the best comedy actors that any film industry can boast of including Hollywood or the Hindi film industry. All the actors are very versatile and created distinct and different niche for themselves. The number of comedy actors is so vast that a small attempt is being made to discuss 40 of them in 8 postings. Most of the comedy actors have come together in the movie “ kishkinda Kanda” and in Evadi Golla Vadede”

1. Ali is a comedy actor who has acted in many films in Telugu and the Tamil and film industries. Ali was born in a poor family in Rajahmundry, Andhar Pradesh, India. His father was a tailor and his mother was a housewife. He acted for the first time in Seethakoka Chiluka, After being a child artist, Ali started his second career in telugu film industry as a comedian. Ali has his own style of dialogue delivery. Ali developed his own style, which was popularly known as Chaata. This was developed with Ali's own way of pronunciation.

2. Brahmanandam: has appeared in several movies in Telugu. With over 750 films, he holds the Guinness world record for appearing in the maximum number of films. He has been awarded with the Padma Shri by the Indian government, an honorary doctorate by Nagarjuna  University and Nandi Award  by the Andhra government  among others. Prior to films, he was a telugu  instructor. He began his film career with writer-director Jandhyala’s Aha Naa Pellanta in 1987. He has prominently appeared in roles and emotes with a rare comic sense. He is one of the actors that people laugh the moment they see him!

3. AVS: is one of the popular names in telugu cinema industry as a top telugu comedian. He is a versatile actor which his remarkable comedy roles as a comedian and a character artist. He is also a writer, producer and director.
AVS started his film career with the movie ‘Mr. Pellam’ and this was a remarkable charcter with his own way of dialogue delivery, the dialogue in this movie is “naku aado tutti” (naku aado trupthi) is famous and comedy lovers enjoy this comedy in most of the occasions. He had also received Nandi award for this movie. This movie was directed by Bapu.

4. Tannikella Bharani: is one of the multi faceted and talented actors in telugu movie industry as a dialogue writer, poet and a actor. He worked for more than three hundred movies with most of the remarkable characters
He started his film career in seventies with the help of one of his close friend Rallapalli by writing some stage scenes. ‘Sri Kanaka Mahalakshmi Recording Dance Troupe’ was his debut film as an actor and he also provided dialogues for this remarkable comedy movie. Being a versatile actor he can play any type of characters justifying his role whether it is a charter artist, vilan or comedy oriented role.

5. Sunil: is one of the top comedians in telugu movie industry. His comedy punch dialogues makes to enjoy a lot. Sunil got his first break through with the movie Chirunavvuto which was written by his roommate and dearest friend Trivikram Srinivas, and Srinivas wrote a special role keeping sunil’s body language and dialogue delivery in mind. This movie was a big hit and brought a good name for debutant sunil.

Sunil continued as a comedian and also acted as a hero for the movie Andala Ramudu, and this movie was a big hit with good name to Sunil acting and dance. Sunil also acted as a hero in the movie Maryada Ramanna directed by S.S. Raja Mouli.

Way out for Telugu Film Industry

So how does telugu film industry get out of the rut that it finds itself. Some of the following suggestions could really help.
1.       Get all the registered names for the new films fed into a data base. This way the exploitation of small film makers of the big film makers just before the release of the movie with the same name can be stopped.
2.       Have professionalism in the Telugu film industry. Let the film industry operate in the same way as a corporate would with clear cut roles, responsibilities, goals, and risk assessment ability. There is a need for transparency in all aspects of film making
3.       There is a need for new faces, new thinking and new actors, actresses and Directors to enter into film industry. Many more young directors like Sekhar Kammala should be encouraged.
4.       At the same time the dynastic attitude in film making has to be severely discouraged. The trend which stated with actors has now spread to actresses, directors, music directors. This in breeding has made Telugu film industry very stale. For example the only non filmi dynastic Telugu film hero to emerge in the last ten years has been Ravi Teja. All the others have to thank their filmi connections for their popularity.
5.       Movie making at best is a business that is associated with glamour. The producers and directors have to answer that question. Make movies that can justify the huge budgets,. It is better to make movies with a tight story, apt screen play and well planned shooting plan and tight editing and clever promotion can lead to more movies breasting the tape at the box office.
6.       The directors, actors and others involved in film making should learn to introspect themselves frankly and not live in a make believe world of their own. Yes it is difficult to be real in a make belief world but Hollywood has shown how to be grounded in the realities of life. Even today in USA it is the production studios that rule the raost and not the actors and directors like in India.
7.       The heroes have a lot of responsibility. Now a days a major heroes do one film in three years. This chokes the distribution line as adequate numbers of movies are not being released. Modern heroes have to take the lead from yesteryear heroes like Krishna, NTR, ANR and Shoban Babu.
8.       The fan associations also need to learn to behave in a better way. They should form fan associations only to express their sense of solidarity to their hero. If it is possible they should attempt some social work and not be destructive in their activities.
9.       The film industry should learn to archive their best work and try to learn from their mistakes. They should also learn lessons of creativity from their colleagues from the Tamil and the Malayalam film industries.
10.   Finally telugu film industry has to remember that it is the flag bearer of a rich tradition of film making. If one talks of the greatest mythological movies in India one can’t look beyond Telugu film industry. This is the same film industry that gave us the image of Ram and Krishna in the form of photos of N. T. Rama Rao.

What ails Telugu Film Industry - Part - II

8.       There is lots of bad blood among the fans associations and among the actors themselves. The actors and their cronies are up to all tricks to see that their opponents do not steal a match over them. So that could include flooding the market with pirated copies of their competitor’s latest movies. The fans associations take off where the actors leave things. Fighting is quite common among the fans. They wield so much power that Krishna’s fans prevented his daughter’s entry into films. Her entry they thought would harm his image as a top hero. Likewise the fan associations give funny titles to their heroes. Chiranjeevi is the megastar, Pavan Kalyan is power star and Ram Chran Tej is Mega Power star. So what happens when another star emerges? Likewise Krishna’s fans were enraged when Rajanikanth film was released and the poster said Super star. To Krishna’s fans the only person who can use the title is their beloved hero.
9.          The film industry functioning is very unprofessional. They joke saying that a love story, 4 comedy scenes, 4 fight scenes and a rain song is a sure typical formula for a film success. It is no wonder that the only two movies that are said to be classics by all sections of the people are Mayabazaar  (made in 1957) and Shankara Bharanam (made in 1980). The directors are laid back, repeat old formulas, and copy glibly from famous Hollywood movies. The coping is so blatant that they even coined a term for it. Copying is termed “Inspiration”.
10.   The web of deceit runs very deep. The film industry does not honor its own words. An appointment given is usually not honored. The film industry deals with brilliance in a suspicious way. What is puzzling is the people who make it to the top braving all odds and beating the system behave in the same illogical and professional way as their predecessors. May be in Telugu film industry the system is very difficult to beat! Things have come to such a passe that the entire film unit including the junior artiste association, actors, actresses, character  artistes, dubbing artistes, distributors, Directors and all other people involved in the making of the movie have to sign a release letter before the final prints are sent from the studio for the release.   Once a movie is released one can kiss goodbye to any dues from the makers of the movie at least till the next film is made. Some of the comedy actors have devised a new system. They do not charge for the entire movie. They charge per day. It is up to the director to extract as much as possible from them. Needless to say if that day’s payment is not released the concerned actor would not appear for the day’s shooting.

What ails Telugu Film Industry - Part - I

Telugu film industry is the one that produces the most films in India. But it does not get the deserved recognition. So what ails the telugu film industry? Check out why telugu film industry is in news
1.        Two of its recent movies made with budgets exceeding 40 crores have either flopped or not doing well. The producer who made these movies is facing bankruptcy.
2.        The same movies had problems with their names. Kommaram Puli and Kaleja had problems with their titles.
3.       The heroes do not get along. They made snide comments. The spat between Chiranjeevi and Mohan Babu during the vajrothsavam (60 years celebrations of Telugu film industry) is too recent to forget. Chiranjeevi got the award of a legend and Mohan Babu was given the award of a celebrity. This was enough for Mohan Babu who made an emotional outburst aimed at Chiranjeevi. He questioned the entire vajrothsavam function and alleged partiality in the selection process of the awards.
4.         In the same function real legends of the film industry were treated in the most cavalier fashion. The veterans were called en-mass to the dais and were honored in a very cold and official fashion. In almost all the cases three were felicitated at the same time.
5.        Telugu film industry producers and Directors are known for their dictatorial way of functioning. One producer it is said beat up his leading lady and a very famous character artiste. One Director it is said slaps actors and actresses who do not perform as expected.
6.         In their own way the actors are no better. It is said that a very famous actor used to walk away wearing the grand clothes specially stitched for the movie. Stories of actors coming in a car with an empty tank (the car has to have its tank full when the actor goes home) are many. The actors and actresses come with crazy demands that include the demand for  the latest litchi juice (so what if it does not taste very good!) or Bawarchi Biryani ( even if the shooting location is 50 kilometers from the hotel)
7.       The actors and actresses are offered very hefty amounts as remuneration. The eye popping amounts are as real as the sets that the movies boast off. They are make belief. The Telugu film industry is full of talk that even top heroes do not get the exact amount that is promised. That is the reason why top heroes either take one territory as their remuneration or produce the movie themselves.

October 14, 2010

International marketing

International marketing is always thought either as a bed of roses or as a demon that swallows everything in its wake. But one should look at International marketing only as a possible diversification strategy. Given below are some of the goofups made by Indian exporters in the past that led to huge losses.
  1.  Indians have recently discovered the magic lure of floriculture. There is money to be made in the field of floriculture. One Indian exporter has exported a huge consignment of roses to Holland after lots of deliberation and planning. The entire lot was rejected by the importer. The reason, the Indian exporter had sent the roses in the open condition whereas in the Western markets a rose that is presented to some one else is always a bud and never an open rose.     
  2. One famous Indian manufacturer has developed a ceiling fan that had cartoon characters printed on the fan wings. He was expecting huge orders from the western markets as there is a huge demand for decorative items for children bedrooms. The entire idea has to be shelved. The reasons, when the fan starts to rotate the cartoon figures get blurred and the kids can’t see them!
  3. One Indian manufacturer had sent a consignment of some very sophisticated engineering tools to Holland. The entire consignment was rejected. The mystery was the carton was not even opened but the entire consignment was rejected. The reason was Holland is a agricultural economy and they did not want the entry of any fungus or virus that can damage their economy. The Indian exporter has made excrement tools but has the material was packed in cheap packing wood. The packing wood was infected with a deadly virus and the entire consignment was rejected. Unlike the domestic market in the international markets once the consignment is rejected it has to be brought back to India and the exporter has to incur additional costs to bring the material back. Talk of adding salt to the injury!

October 13, 2010

Customer Relationship Management – The Case of Azim Premji – Wipro group

The next case of customer service management is credited to the service engineer of the Electronics company called “Western” who supplied a VCR to the Managing Director of Wipro, Mr. Ajim Premji. Ajim Premji is a man with tremendous commitment and dedication to his company and his employees. It is said that Ajim Premji's son who was studying in UK phoned his dad and requested than he be alloted a room in the Wipro guest house in London. "It is reported that Mr. Premji had said "I can't do that. You can't get a room as you are not an employee of Wipro. The rooms in the guest house are for employees only and I suggest that you find a room for yourself". Azim dresses in a very simple fashion and it was reported that his personal vehicle for a very long time was a 118 NE, a Premier Padmini car.

It is said that Azim wanted a VCR and he had told Western company that he wants the VCR to be installed by 0930 hours on the Sunday morning. Why by 0930 hours on the Sunday? The timing was critical as 0930 hours was the time when Mahabharata the TV serial was being telecast on the Doordharshan and Azim did not want to miss even a single episode. And missing even a single episode was one thing that Azim did not like at all but was forced to miss some of the episodes as he had a very busy schedule. The same news was conveyed to the company.  

On the eventful Sunday, Azim could not catch the episode of the Mahabharata. An enquiry at his house realized his apprehension – the service engineer did not deliver the promised VCR. Azim was terribly unhappy with the turn of events but being a gentleman to the core he just kept quiet. His evening was progressing normally when the service engineer from WESTERN company makes a visit. He Introduced himself and apologized for his late arrival. He has the right excuse. The VCR was simply not available with the dealer.

Azim controls himself and lets the service engineer do his job. The service engineer promptly installs the VCR and then demonstrates the features of the VCR to Azim. Azim quietly listens. The service engineer requests Azim to sign the document of satisfactory installation of the VCR. Azim obliges him. The service engineer takes out a small envelope from his suitcase. He says “sir I am told that you are a great fan of the Mahabharata serial and that you do not like to miss even one episode. I had today’s episode recorded for your sake. This is the video tape of today’s episode. If you have missed today’s episode you can watch it on your new VCR. I sincerely apologize for any inconvenience caused”. Azim was delighted at the thoughtfulness of the service engineer. 

Service is all about the delivery and about empathy. The service engineer treated Azim like a family member and he understood the psyche of his customer. As they say common sense is not that common. I am sure that the thoughtful service engineer of WESTERN would have grown by leaps and bounds and that he would he heading a group of dedicated CRM professionals in a famous company today


October 03, 2010

Customer Relationship Management – The Case of Venu Srinivasan – TVS Motors

Venu Srinivasan is the Managing Director (MD) of Sundaram Clayton Ltd and became the MD of the TVS Motors in 1986. In July 2002, he also became the Chairman of TVS Motors.

Under his leadership as the Managing Director (MD), Sundaram Clayton's Brakes division won the Deming Prize in 1998 for having "achieved distinctive performance improvements through application of company-wide quality control." In 2004, TVS Motors also won the Deming Award during his tenure as the MD, becoming the first two-wheeler company in the world to do so.

This particular CRM practice is credited to Venu Srinivasan. The common myth is that customer always means external to the company. The word customer customer means a person who buys a product or service from the company. But there exits a concept of a Internal Customers Internal customer can be an employee or a taker of service from another department of the same company. In that way the employees of the company are the customers of the HRM department.

We need to understand that the employees spends up to 8-10 hours at the company. That is nearly 75% of the time that he awake. So what is the feeling that he/she takes home. Is the employee happy about his work? Does he/she come bubbling with enthusiasm? Or are they grumpy or irritated? What is his opinion about the company? What does he tell about his company to his family members? The incident cited will reveal at least some answers to the queries posed.

Mr Venu Srinivasan is a very busy man. He is a globetrotting business leader. But where ever he is he returns to Chennai on the Friday night. He then selects one of the employees for his “special treatment”. This week it is the turn of Govinda Venkataswamy from the Fitting Division. Govinda has been working is the fFtting division for 7 years. He is known as a punctual, no nonsense worker. Well liked and introverted, Govinda is the grain with which the vast majority of factory employees are made throughout the world. He is a part of a silent majority. They do not get the attention or the appreciation that the trouble makers get.

Unknown to Govinda the Mercedes Benz that Venu Srinivasan uses goes to his house. His entire family is then chauffeured to the factory in royal style. They are taken with due respect to the factory area. They are taken to Govinda’s work station. Govinda is pleasantly surprised (He know that his turn might come but it is still a sort of lottery. After all there are 1000s of employees and only 52 Saturdays in a year).

Govinda’s supervisor explains the work that is done by Govinda. He tells the awe struck family members how important Govinda is for the company. He elaborates the initiatives that originated from Govinda. Then the family is taken to the sanctum Santorum the CMD’s office. This is the place that Govinda never even dreamt of entering. And here he is entering the CMD office and with his entire family! Venu Srinivasan receives them. He talks very warmly with the family. He has lunch with them and obligingly poses for keep sake photographs. He presents a memento to the eldest of the family. He thanks the family for giving him an excellent employee and hopes that Govinda stays for a  long time with the company. Govinda is allowed to go home with his family that too in the Mercedes Benz that belongs to his CMD.

That is not the end of the story. Once there was a huge threat of a big flood hitting the TVS factory. Venu calls his production in charge and tells him to rush to the factory to protract the precious machinery. Venu drives to the factory at a high speed. He is very anxious that his precious factory be saved from the nature’s fury. To his surprise a heart whelming scene greets him at the factory. His entire production staffs are already at the factory. They needed no second saying. They were working in a torrential downpour. Drenched to the skin, they have already taken full precautions to see that the machinery is adequately covered. Venu is immensely satisfied. He says to himself “My company is in safe hands”. When the employees feel that the company is their own the company is slated to be very long lasting. It is no surprise that TVS group has won the Deming Prize twice. Hats off to You Mr. Venu Srinivasan Sir, way to go.