Jayasimha (1955 film)

Jayasimha is a 1955 Indian Telugu-language swashbuckler film, written by Samudrala Jr. and produced by N. T. Rama Rao and his brother N. Trivikrama Rao for their production company National Art Theatres. Directed by D. Yoganand, the film features Rama Rao playing the eponymous protagonist along with Anjali Devi and Waheeda Rehman (making her debut as an actress in Indian cinema) in the lead roles, supported by an ensemble cast of S. V. Ranga Rao, Kanta Rao, Gummadi, Relangi and Rajanala Kaleswara Rao.

Theatrical release poster
Directed byD. Yoganand
Written bySamudrala Jr
Produced byN. Trivikrama Rao
StarringN. T. Rama Rao
Anjali Devi
S. V. Ranga Rao
Waheeda Rehman
CinematographyM. A. Rehman
Edited byG. D. Joshi
Music byT. V. Raju
Release date
  • 21 October 1955 (1955-10-21)
Running time
165 mins

Inspired from the Telugu novel Veera Pooja,[a] the film tells the story of Jayasimha (played by Rama Rao), the crown prince of Malawa kingdom who escapes assassination attempts from his uncle Rudrasimha (Ranga Rao), who wishes to ascend the throne as the next king. Jayasimha leaves Malawa assuming a new identity and leads the life of a soldier in Magadha kingdom, falling in love with its princess Padmini (Waheeda) and befriending Kalindi (Anjali Devi), the daughter of an old disabled general Ranadheer (Gummadi). The rest of the film focuses on the aftermath of Rudrasimha finding out Jayasimha's new life in Magadha and seeking his life.

D. V. S. Raju, who assisted Rama Rao during the production of Pichi Pullayya (1953) and Thodu Dongalu, joined the film's crew as an associate producer. T. V. Raju composed the film's soundtrack and score; M. A. Rehman was signed as the cinematographer and G. D. Joshi edited the film. Jayasimha's principal photography was conducted at sets erected by Thota at Vijaya Vauhini Studios, Madras (now Chennai).

Jayasimha was released theatrically on 21 October 1955, cashing in on the Vijayadashami festival holidays. Upon release, the film was a commercial success, completing a 100-day run in 6 centres, 169-day run in Vijayawada and Guntur, and a 175-day run in Bangalore. It was later dubbed into Tamil in the same year, with the title Jayasimman.


Amarasimha, the ruler of Malawa kingdom, calls his brother Rudrasimha and his wife Durgadevi. In his dying moments, Amarasimha requests the couple to raise his son Jayasimha and make him the king after he attains suitable age. Durgadevi raises Jayasimha and her biological son Vijayasimha with equal love and attention. As Jayasimha becomes a major, Durgadevi and Vijayasimha announce the coronation ceremony. However, Rudrasimha wants to ascend the throne, and supported by the evil commander-in-chief Chandasena, sends a group of assassins to kill Jayasimha. Jayasimha and Vijayasimha overpower them, but are unable to find the person behind the attack. Jayasimha later learns about Rudrasimha's plans, but decides to spare his life for Durgadevi. Dejected, Jayasimha leaves the kingdom forever, making Rudrasimha the king.

As Durgadevi and Vijayasimha search for Jayasimha, Rudrasimha too joins them as he does not want any possibility of obstacles for his rule. Meanwhile, Jayasimha reaches the forests of the Magadha kingdom where its princess Padmini is found kidnapped by a group of dacoits. Jayasimha saves her from them, but refuses to accept her hospitality and leaves. Padmini falls in love with him and continues to search for him. In his attempts to find a job, Jayasimha befriends Budhimathi, the adopted son of an old disabled general Ranadheer and his daughter Kalindi. He introduces himself with the alias Bhavani to them, and looks for opportunities in the Magadha army. After being rejected and insulted by the ministers, Padmini notices Jayasimha and sends a ring through one of her friends, asking him to use it for gaining an army job.

Jayasimha gains the job, and saves the king Raghuveer in an attack from the enemies. Raghuveer is impressed with Jayasimha's skills and promotes him. Later, Padmini and Jayasimha begin to spend more time together, and develop feelings for each other. This angers Mahaveer, the commander-in-chief of Magadha, who too has an interest in Padmini. At the same time, Kalindi proposes to Jayasimha, which puts him in a dilemma. Meanwhile, Rudrasimha learns about the adventures of Bhavani in Magadha, and sends Chandasena to confirm if Bhavani is Jayasimha. Chandasena reaches Magadha, identifies Bhavani and Jayasimha, and plots with Mahaveer. Chandasena and Mahaveer kidnap Jayasimha and Padmini, and take them to an isolated place. Mahaveer plans to forcibly marry Padmini after finishing off Jayasimha. Kalindi, who was following the duo all this time, acts as a mad women before the army and infiltrates their camp.

Knowing that Jayasimha considers her as his sister from god, Kalindi resolves to save him, and is fatally injured in the process. She saves Jayasimha and Padmini, and dies in her father Ranadheer's arms. A grief-stricken Jayasimha decides to fight back, and defeats Mahaveer with the aid of Budhimathi and Ranadheer. Mahaveer dies in the process and Jayasimha reveals his true identity to Padmini. With Raghuveer's support, Jayasimha returns to Malawa to challenge Rudrasimha. However, at the last moment, Jayasimha wishes to let go as he is unable to fight his love for Rudrasimha, whom he considered his father figure. Vijayasimha, who learned about attempts on Jayasimha's life, fatally injures Rudrasimha. In his dying moments, a shocked Rudrasimha feels remorseful and apologies to both Jayasimha and Vijayasimha. The film ends with Jayasimha becoming the combined ruler of Malawa and Magadha kingdoms.



After shooting the song, "Jaya Jaya Sri Rama", I removed the makeup and sat next to [Rama Rao]. Anjali Devi asked [him] "who is this boy?" [Rama Rao] had a hearty laugh and replied, "Till now he is the one who acted as your father." [sic] I can never forget the surprised expression on Anjali Devi’s face. As an actor it was the most memorable moment in my life.

—Gummadi, in his memoir Teepi Gurthulu[1][2]

N. T. Rama Rao was depressed because of the commercial failure of his previous film Thodu Dongalu (1954), which he produced along with his brother N. Trivikrama Rao and Atluri Pundarikakshayya.[3] The failure prompted Rama Rao to contemplate quitting film production, until Trivikrama Rao and Pundarikakshayya convinced him to try making a swashbuckler film rooted in folklore.[1][2] The financial success of Pathala Bhairavi (1951), Chandirani (1953) and Rechukka (1954)—all starring Rama Rao in the lead role and set in the same genre—further influenced their decision.[1] Most of the principal crew of Thodu Dongalu, including its director D. Yoganand and writer Samudrala Jr., were retained for this film.[2] Rama Rao advised Samudrala Jr. to loosely adapt the novel Veera Pooja.[a] However, the same was not acknowledged in the film's credits.[1]

The film was titled Jayasimha and was produced for Rama Rao's production company National Art Theatre. While Rama Rao decided to play the eponymous protagonist, Anjali Devi and Waheeda Rehman were cast as the female leads Kalindi and Padmini respectively.[1] Jayasimha was Waheeda's debut as an actress, after her cameo appearances in Kanyadanam (1954) and Rojulu Marayi (1955);[1] she was trained by Pundarikakshayya himself and her lines were dubbed by Sowcar Janaki.[2] For the role of Vijayasimha, Jayasimha's brother, the makers approached Akkineni Nageswara Rao who could not accept the offer because of scheduling conflicts.[2] Jaggayya was considered, but Gummadi (who was cast as Ranadheer, Kalindi's father) recommended Kanta Rao for the role.[2] Rama Rao agreed, and this was Kanta Rao's second collaboration with the former after Vaddante Dabbu (1954).[1] S. V. Ranga Rao, Rajanala Kaleswara Rao and Relangi were cast in key supporting roles.[1] Anjali Devi was given the top billing in the film's opening credits and the song books, and was succeeded by Rama Rao and Ranga Rao.[4][5]

D. V. S. Raju, who assisted Rama Rao during the production of Pichi Pullayya (1953) and Thodu Dongalu, joined the film's crew as an associate producer.[6] M. A. Rehman was signed as the cinematographer and G. D. Joshi edited the film.[1] Jayasimha was shot in sets erected by Thota at Vijaya Vauhini Studios, Madras (now Chennai).[4] Principal photography commenced on 19 January 1955 with a sequence filmed on Rama Rao and Relangi at Vauhini Studios, Madras.[1] 'Stunt' Somu choreographed the action sequences.[4] Kuchala Kumari and Rita composed the choreography for the dance sequences.[4] The post-production activities were carried out at Vijaya Laboratories in Madras.[4]


Soundtrack album by
Released31 December 1955
StudioVijaya Vauhini Studios
LabelHMV Records
ProducerT. V. Raju
T. V. Raju chronology

T. V. Raju composed the film's soundtrack and score, with lyrics written by Samudrala Jr.,[7] which was marketed by HMV Records.[8] Satyam, who was known as 'Dholak' Satyam back then, assisted Raju during the composition of the songs.[1] A. Krishnan was the film's audiographer, assisted by A. R. Swaminathan, C. Radhababu and V. Govinda Rao. On Satyam's advice, Raju decided to look for inspiration in Hindustani classical music.[2] For the song "Eenati Eehayi", Raju took inspiration from Ghulam Mohammed's composition "Zindagi Denewale Sun" for Dil-E-Nadaan (1953).[2] Similarly, for the pallavi of the song "Manasaina Cheli Pilupu", Raju used the tune of "Chori Chori Aag Se" composed by Shyam Sundar for Dholak (1951).[2] Raju deviated from the tune of the originals, however, while composing the charanam for these songs.[2] Another song "Are Nee Sagamapa" was adapted from a Hindi language composition of the same name written by Alla Rakha for Sabak (1950).[2]

The song "Nadireyi Gadichene", filmed on Waheeda, was composed as a javali using the Begada raga.[b][2] The duet "Madiloni Madhurabhavam", filmed on Rama Rao and Waheeda, was composed using the Mohanam raga.[2] Raju composed the song "Nadiyeti Painadachu" in a Burra katha format which was well received by the critics.[2] The soundtrack, consisting of 12 songs, was released on 31 December 1955 and received positive reviews.[8][7] The song "Jaya Jaya Sri Rama" particularly gained popularity during the film's release and was played regularly in temples dedicated to Rama in Andhra Pradesh.[2]

All lyrics are written by Samudrala Jr..

1."Nela Nadimi Vennela"Jikki02:01
2."Jeevitamintele"M. S. Ramarao02:49
3."Are Nee Sagamapa"Pithapuram Nageswara Rao02:57
4."Jaya Jaya Sri Rama"Ghantasala03:37
5."Muripemumeera"A. P. Komala02:42
6."Eenati Eehayi"Ghantasala, P. Leela03:57
7."Manasaina Cheli Pilupu"R. Balasaraswathi Devi, A. P. Komala03:00
8."Nadiyeti Painadachu"Pithapuram Nageswara Rao01:30
9."Madiloni Madhurabhavam"Ghantasala, R. Balasaraswathi Devi02:54
10."Metipai Velugaripoye"Ghantasala01:32
11."Tandana Hoyi (poem)"Ghantasala01:32
12."Nadireyi Gadichene"P. Susheela03:45
13."Kondameeda"K. Rani03:58
Total length:36:44

Release and receptionEdit

Jayasimha was released theatrically on 21 October 1955, cashing in on the Vijayadashami festival holidays.[7] National Art Theatre released the film on their own across Andhra Pradesh, while the distribution rights for Nizam, Ceeded and Mysore regions were acquired by All India Talkie Distributors.[c][4] Upon release, the film was a commercial success, completing a 100-day run in 6 centres, 169-day run in Vijayawada and Guntur, and a 175-day run in Bangalore.[7] Jayasimha was later dubbed into Tamil the same year with the title Jayasimman.[12]


  1. ^ a b Acharam Shanmukhachari of Sithara magazine credited Telugu writer and playwright Viswanatha Satyanarayana as the author of Veera Pooja,[2] whereas M. L. Narasimham of The Hindu referred to a novel of the same name written by the Telugu poet duo Venkata Parvatiswara Kavulu.[1]
  2. ^ Javali is a poem set to music in Carnatic compositions which is usually romantic and more explicit in nature.[9]
  3. ^ For film trade purpose, the Nizam region includes the three districts of Kalaburagi, Bidar, and Raichur in Karnataka and seven districts in the Marathwada region including Aurangabad, Latur, Nanded, Parbhani, Beed, Jalna and Osmanabad apart from the state of Telangana.[10] Similarly, the Ceeded region includes the Rayalaseema region of Andhra Pradesh and parts of Davanagere of Karnataka.[11]


  1. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l Narasimham, M. L. (14 August 2014). "JAYASIMHA (1955)". The Hindu. Archived from the original on 22 January 2022. Retrieved 22 January 2022.
  2. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p Shanmukhachari, Acharam. "ఎన్‌ఏటీ గర్జించిన ఎన్టీఆర్‌ 'జయసింహ'" [NTR's "Jayasimha", the roar of NAT]. Sithara (in Telugu). Archived from the original on 22 January 2022. Retrieved 22 January 2022.
  3. ^ Narasimham, M. L. (18 May 2016). "THODU DONGALU (1954)". The Hindu. Archived from the original on 31 October 2020. Retrieved 22 January 2022.
  4. ^ a b c d e f Jayasimha (1955) (in Telugu). Catrack Indian Classics. 6 October 2016. From 0:00:00 to 0:03:19. Retrieved 22 January 2022.
  5. ^ ఎన్‌ఏటీ వారి "జయసింహ" [NAT's 'Jayasimha'] (in Telugu). Vijayawada: Sri Padmanabha Printing Works. Retrieved 22 January 2022.
  6. ^ "తెలుగు సినిమా భీష్మాచార్యులు డి.వి.ఎస్.రాజు!" [D. V. S. Raju, Telugu cinema's Bhishmacharya!] (in Telugu). NTV Telugu. 13 December 2021. Archived from the original on 22 January 2022. Retrieved 22 January 2022.
  7. ^ a b c d "అరవై ఏళ్ళు పూర్తి చేసుకున్న 'జయసింహ'" ['Jayasimha' completes sixty years]. Andhra Jyothi (in Telugu). 21 October 2015. Archived from the original on 22 January 2022. Retrieved 22 January 2022.
  8. ^ a b Raju, T. V. (31 December 1955). "Jayasimha (Original Motion Picture Soundtrack)". iTunes India. Archived from the original on 22 January 2022. Retrieved 22 January 2022.
  9. ^ Srikrishna, Chitra (12 June 2020). "Carnatic music's padams and javalis show how passionate, even erotic, love is a part of our tradition". The Hindu. Archived from the original on 22 January 2022. Retrieved 22 January 2022.
  10. ^ "Nizam territory will remain indispensable for Tollywood". The Times of India. 31 July 2013. Archived from the original on 15 February 2015. Retrieved 22 January 2022.
  11. ^ Rajani Kanth, K (31 July 2013). "Telangana casts its shadow on Telugu film industry prospects". Business Standard. Archived from the original on 10 February 2021. Retrieved 22 January 2022.
  12. ^ Film News Anandan (23 October 2004). Sadhanaigal Padaitha Thamizh Thiraipada Varalaru [History of Landmark Tamil Films] (in Tamil). Chennai: Sivakami Publishers. Archived from the original on 23 June 2017. Retrieved 30 June 2020.

External linksEdit