Emotions are running high in Tamil Nadu, as Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa, battles grave illness in Chennai’s Apollo Hospital. Being a state that is known for cult-politics and demigod like adoration of its political leaders, the fervor around Jayalalithaa’s health only underlines the popularity and affection the actor-turned politician enjoys amid her people.
It was her charisma as an actor, and later as a politician that enabled her to step into the shoes of her political mentor MG Ramachandran, and command single-handed control of one of Tamil Nadu’s main political parties — the AIADMK.
As the news about Jayalalithaa’s demise filters through, hundreds and thousands of the politician’s devotees mourn the death of the superstar turned politician. She breathed her last at Apollo Hospitals. She breathed her last at Apollo Hospitals after being admitted since September 22 after suffering cardiac arrest. Here are the unknown facts of Jayalalithaa’s film journey.
Unknown facts about Jayalalithaa’s film journey:
1) The only Hindi film she worked in was Izzat that started Dharmendra. This movie was a hit. In her career spanning over decades Jayalalitha holds holds the record for having maximum silver jubilee hits in her career as far as Tamil cinema is concerned 80 films starred her were silver jubilee hits. 28 Telugu movies she featured saw the same fate at the box office!
2) Now this one is quite surprising (and shocking) Her debut film acquired Adults Only disclaimer. She could not watch her won performance on the silver screen as she was not an adult herself when the film was released.
3) Many vouch for the silver screen idol turned politician’s unmatched grace and her graceful screen presence. The credit goes to her early initiation into dancing. Yes Jayalithat started training in Bharatnatyam at the tender age of 3.Jayalalitha is a trained dancer with expertise in many classical forms including Bharatanatyam, Mohiniyattam, Manipuri and Kathak.
4) As a politician she might have made Sari popular. She always carried herself with tremendous char, grace and warmth but very few know that she is the first actress in the history of Tamil cinema to have worn sleeveless blouses and drench under waterfall.
5) It was the Tamil actor and producer Marudhur Gopalan Ramachandran also known as as MGR who later served as The Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu introduced Jayalalitha to Politics. MGR went on to do more than dozen movies with her.
6) Jayalalitha’s movie Deiva Magan that starred is special in the history of Tamil films in that is the first Tamil film to be submitted by the Govt. of India for the Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film. That’s a remarkable feat indeed.
7) She was a natural in front of the camera with an ability to portray a range of chracters. It was reported in an interview that her performance also stemmed from her intelligence and her fondness for reading. In fact even while she was a star she was known for her passion for reading. It is said that she used to carry books during shooting of films and used to read then in between shots.
8) Apart from being an actress, politician, Jayalalithaa was also a wonderful singer, who has crooned her voice for 14 songs.
Here is a brief timeline of the important events that shaped the political career of a leader, who went on to become the most powerful woman in the state politics.
1948: Born on 24 February in Melukote town in Mysuru district, Karnataka.
1961: Starts film career as child actress. Her only English movie, Epistle, was the first she started shooting for.
1965: Debuts as lead actress in Tamil with Vennira Aadai. In the same year, acts opposite future political mentor MG Ramachandran.
1980: Acts in her last Tamil movie, Nadhiyai Thedi Vandha Kadal, as female lead.
1982: Becomes member of MGR’s AIADMK party. Addresses first public gathering in Cuddalore, Tamil Nadu.
1983: Appointed AIADMK’s propoganda secretary and campaigns in Thiruchendur by-election.
1984: Rift with MGR widens; stripped from several party posts.
1987: MGR death divides AIADMK — one faction supports MGR’s wife Janaki Ramachandran and the other Jayalalithaa.
1988: Janaki becomes Tamil Nadu chief minister, but rule ends in 21 days; the state comes under President’s Rule.
1989: The DMK sweeps state polls; Janaki offers to quit AIADMK, clearing path for Jaya’s accession.
In the same year, DMK and AIADMK clash in Tamil Nadu Assembly hall; Jayalalithaa swears to step inside Assembly again only as chief minister.
1991: AIADMK-Congress thrashes DMK in polls; Jayalalithaa becomes chief minister for the first time.
1996: AIADMK routed in elections; Jayalalithaa gets arrested in a corruption case; 48 cases slapped on her and aide Sasikala.
2001: Makes second return as chief minister; party appoints her as chief minister but SC unseats her; O Paneerselvam named chief minister.
2003: Allowed to contest elections; wins from Andipatti, becomes chief minister again.
2006: Defeated by DMK alliance in polls; serves as Leader of Opposition till 2011.
2011: Returns as chief minister for the third time; rift with Sasikala widens.
2014: Convicted by court in disproportionate assets case; sentenced to four years in prison with Rs 100 crore fine.
2016: Jayalalithaa elected for a consecutive second term.
The entire country is mourning her demise and we extend our deepest condolences. Rest in peace Amma…