Nagesh, born as Gundu Rao, was a legendary Indian actor who left an indelible mark on the world of cinema with his exceptional talent, versatility, and unique style. His humble beginnings did not foreshadow the illustrious career that lay ahead. He moved to Chennai (then Madras) in pursuit of a career in acting and began his journey as a stage artist before transitioning into the world of cinema.
Nagesh made his film debut in 1958 with a small role in the Tamil film “Manamulla Marutharam.” However, it was his role in the 1959 film “Server Sundaram” that catapulted him to stardom. His impeccable comic timing and expressive face endeared him to audiences, making him a sought-after actor in Tamil cinema.
Nagesh was often hailed as the “Jerry Lewis of India” for his mastery of comedy. He had an innate ability to make people laugh effortlessly. His collaboration with iconic actor Sivaji Ganesan in numerous films, including “Bale Pandiya” and “Navarathri,” showcased his comedic brilliance.Nagesh’s talent extended beyond comedy.
He demonstrated remarkable versatility by portraying a wide range of characters, from a grieving father in “Thiruvilaiyadal” to a ruthless villain in “Thillaanaa Mohanambal.” His ability to seamlessly transition between comedic and serious roles set him apart from his peers. Nagesh’s contributions to Indian cinema earned him several accolades, including multiple Tamil Nadu State Film Awards. He received the prestigious Padma Shri in 2010, recognizing his exceptional contribution to the world of entertainment.
Nagesh had the privilege of working with some of the most renowned directors and actors in the Indian film industry. His collaborations with director K. Balachander and actor Kamal Haasan in films like “Apoorva Raagangal” and “Avargal” showcased his acting prowess. Despite his on-screen success, Nagesh faced personal challenges.
He lost his wife to illness, and the financial burden took a toll on him. However, he continued to entertain and inspire audiences through his performances. Nagesh was not only an actor but also a philanthropist. He actively participated in charitable activities and established the Nagesh Family Charitable Trust to support underprivileged children and provide medical aid to those in need.
Nagesh’s influence on Indian cinema is immeasurable. He inspired countless comedians and actors who followed in his footsteps. His memorable characters continue to be celebrated by fans and critics alike. Nagesh left a void in the film industry when he passed away on January 31, 2009. His demise was mourned by fans, colleagues, and the entire Indian film fraternity. His legacy lives on through his timeless performances, and he remains an enduring figure in the history of Indian cinema.
|Also Known as||Cheyur Krishna Nageshwaran|
|Date of Birth||27/09/1933|
|Date of Death||31/01/2009|
|Birth Place||Tiruppur District, Tamil Nadu, India|
|Current Residence||Chennnai, Tamil Nadu, India|
|1994||National Film Awards||Best Supporting Actor||Nammavar|
|1994||Tamil Nadu State Film Awards||Special Jury Awards||Nammavar|
|1995||Filmfare Awards South||Lifetime Achievement Award|