On January 22, the world learned that famed Tollywood comedian, MS Narayana, died at age 63. This follows a long string of deaths in India in the Tollywood cinematic community that has left the country in shock. With an estimated audience of 35 to 70 million Telegu speakers in India, devoted fans and members of the Tollywood comedy and cinema community paid their respects in the media to this Tollywood celebrity according to CineJosh.
Despite MS Narayana’s extensive Tollywood resume of over 750 movies and TV appearances since he began acting in 1997, few Americans are familiar with this funny cinema star.
Alternatively, many Americans are familiar with Bollywood and headlines about movie romance scenes leading to legal trouble for actors, but few know of its counterpart — Tollywood. The term Tollywood is defined as a combination of the words Hollywood and the language of Telugu people of India. When Telegu cinema is referred to, it is typically called “Tollywood” in the press.
While Hindu is a more common language in India, an estimated 70 million people speak Telugu in the south-central states of India called Andhra Pradesh and Telegana. The major city in that region (and the capital of Tollywood) is Hyderabad, India. It is in this region that the Tollywood comedy celebrity MS Narayana became ill and died on January 22.
Initial reports by CVR English on January 19 indicated that the Tollywood actor was hospitalized for food poisoning. Days later, doctors reported to press agencies like TV9 that the Tollywood star had died from multiple organ failure. Clarifying the initial reports after his death, CVR English stated the following.
“Food poisoning on January 19 that led to problems with a pre-existing kidney problems and succumbed to kidney-related medical crisis. Comedian M S Narayana is dead. He passed away at 9.40 am at KIMS Hospital, Kondapur in Hyderabad. One of the most iconic comedians of Telugu cinema in modern times.”
The Hindu says, “He was initially diagnosed with malaria in a hospital in Bhimavaram and brought to a corporate hospital here about four days ago. He then complained of chest pain and was put on ventilator for the last two days. When his kidneys did not function properly he was given dialysis too. On Thursday evening, his condition remained critical though doctors said he was responding favorably to the treatment. However, at about 9:40 a.m. on Friday, he was declared dead.”
A legend in the Tollywood Indian movie scene, The International Business Times said the following.
“The actor was popular for his comic timing and witty dialogues. Some of his popular films include Dookudu, Baadshah, Ready, and Attarintiki Daaredi, among others…. Narayana won several awards, including the Andhra Pradesh State Nandi Award for Best Male Comedian five times and the Filmfare Award for Dookudu.”
However, The Hindu article continues to tell a tale about the sinister details surrounding the death of Tollywood star MS Narayan. In fact, over the last 45 days, the Tollywood industry in India has been hit by a wave of celebrity deaths. The Hindu stated the following.
“The Telugu film industry was plunged into grief at the demise of yet another talented actor. The industry was shocked at the untimely demise of Music director Chakradhar Gilla known as Chakri, another popular actor and dubbing artist P.J.Sharma, father of actor Sai Kumar and character artise Adsumilli Janardhan Vara Prasad aks Ahuthi Prasad and noted director and producer V.B.Rajendra Prasad, father of actor Jagapathi Babu breathed their last in the last 45 days.”
RIP MS Narayana Garu. One of my favourite comedian. Tollywood movies will miss you.
— VVS Laxman (@VVSLaxman281) January 24, 2015
Another irreplaceable actor MS Narayana garu is passes away..RIP..huge loss for TFI.. pic.twitter.com/AgT8BpBEhQ
— TollyReviews.com (@TollyreviewsCom) January 23, 2015
— Abhijeth D (@abhijeth) January 23, 2015
[All images from the referenced links.]