Versatility and vigor got a new definition with Jagapathi Babu’s presence in Telugu Cinema. He is perhaps the only hero who made contrasting roles such as Action Thrillers along with Family Drama competently at the same time. Beginning his career with Simha Swapnam directed by his father V.B. Rajendra Prasad in 1989, Jagapathi Babu rose to prominence with a memorable role in the Family Entertainer Peddarikam in 1992. The film earned him the typical Family Hero image along by giving the character a youthful touch.
However, the biggest breakthrough for Jagapathi Babu came with Gaayam in 1993 directed by the brilliant filmmaker Ram Gopal Varma. It was in fact RGV who insisted that Jagapathi Babu has to dub his own voice for the role which created a sensation after the film’s release. His portrayal as ‘Durga’ earned him wide accolades as a balanced actor with fantastic histrionics and amazing talent.
The image of an action hero changed to out and out family hero yet again - Thanks to S.V.Krishna Reddy’s Subhalagnam. His portrayal of a middle class family man who loves simple pleasures in life was breathtakingly brought to life. Jagapathi’s fantastic chemistry with his co-star Aamani worked wonders with the family audience of the 90s. Prominent director E.V.V.Satyanarayana also chose Jagapathi Babu for Aayanaki Iddaru earning him the “Sobhan Babu” image for the 90s decade- the typical male protagonist who gets caught between two women!
His acting in Kodi Ramakrishna’s films such as Maa Avida Collector, Pelli Pandiri and Dongata were highly appreciated as well. Jagapathi’s chemistry with veteran actress Soundarya deserves a worthy mention. The stunner came next with his memorable role in Krishna Vamshi’s Antahpuram where he acted as a petty thief who rescues the heroine - became one of his career best performances. Nobody can forget the last cigarette puff his character takes- even after fatally injured.
Jagapathi continued his versatility in the 2000s era with family films like Hanuman Junction, Kabaddi Kabaddi, Pellaina Kotthalo and so on. His portrayal as a peculiar cop in Chandrasekhar Yeleti’s Anukokunda Oka Roju became the most favorite of the audience.
He is even into powerful supporting roles like those he played in Kathanayakudu, Thandavam etc prove the verstality of this actor. Now he is ready to amaze the audience with his first ever appearance in a negative role in Balakrishna’s upcoming film Legend. That is why they say, a real actor would never fail to experiment or fit in any role flawlessly!
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