Clans in Indian Cinema: The Allu-Konidela Family of Telugu Superstars and Film Producers

Bohni Bandyopadhyay
·6-min read

Telugu comedian Allu Ramalingaiah’s daughter is married to superstar Chiranjeevi, thus connecting two influential families of actors and film producers in South cinema. Allu Ramalingaiah’s son Allu Aravind is one of the most powerful producers in the industry, while his brother-in-law Chiranjeevi is one of the biggest stars in Indian cinema and a politician. Chiranjeevi’s Konidela family is full of popular actors, including brother Pawan Kalyan, and son Ram Charan. Allu Aravind’s son Allu Arjun is among the popular Telugu actors of today. Here’s taking a look at the Allu-Konidela camp as part of our clans in Indian cinema series.

1st generation:

Allu Ramalingaiah: He began his film career in 1953 with Puttillu. Allu played memorable roles in classics such as Mayabazar, Missamma, Muthyala Muggu, Sankarabharanam, Saptapadi, Yamagola and numerous movies of the 80s, where he played a soft and unhated villain. His comedic timing and his nasal voice distinguished his many comic performances. He was awarded the Padma Shri in 1990. His son, Allu Aravind, is one of the most powerful producers in Tollywood. One of his daughters, Surekha, is married to actor Chiranjeevi.

2nd generation:

Allu Aravind: He produces films under his banner Geetha Arts. Some of his notable works as a producer are Vijetha (1985), Master (1997), Ninaithen Vandhai (Tamil) (1998), Kannada film Mangalyam Tantunanena (Kannada) (1998), Annayya (2000), Johnny (2003), Bunny (2005), Jalsa (2008), Ghajini (2008), Magadheera (2009) and Tamil film Darling (2015). Geetha Arts has been into film distribution network as well. He had produced the Hindi remake of Ghajini, and is also producing the remake of Jersey.

Allu Aravind’s sons are Allu Venkatesh, Allu Arjun, and Allu Sirish. Arjun and Sirish are actors in Tollywood. He is the maternal uncle of actor Ram Charan.

Chiranjeevi: Allu Aravind’s brother in law is one of the biggest stars Telugu cinema has ever seen, with a career spanning four decades. Despite hailing from a non-film background, Chiranjeevi (real name Konidela Siva Sankara Vara Prasad) was interested in acting from a young age. Having made his debut as a lead actor with Pranam Khareedu in 1978, Chiranjeevi has starred in over 150 films and counting. He stands alongside the top stars of Indian cinema like Amitabh Bachchan, Rajinikanth and Kamal Haasan. He is the only star in Telugu cinema who has enjoyed such stardom and following among the audience pan-India. Some of his biggest hits include Muta Mestri, Swayamkrushi, Khaidi, Indra, and Gang Leader.

He has served as the Minister of State with independent charge for the Ministry of Tourism. Chiranjeevi married Surekha, the daughter of actor Allu Ramalingaiah. They have two daughters, Sushmita and Srija, and a son, Ram Charan, also an actor in Telugu cinema. Chiranjeevi’s younger brother, Nagendra Babu, is a film producer and actor. His youngest brother, Pawan Kalyan, is an actor-politician.

Nagendra Babu: He acts mainly in supporting roles and villainous roles, though he has also played the lead role in some films. He has acted in films like 143, Anji, Shock, Sri Ramadasu, Chandamama and Orange. He has produced several films with his brothers, Chiranjeevi and Pawan Kalyan under Anjana Productions. He has two children, actor Varun Tej and Niharika.

Pawan Kalyan: Popularly known as ‘Power Star’, Pawan Kalyan dons many hats. He is an actor, director, screenwriter, stunt coordinator, philanthropist, and politician. Kalyan made his acting debut in the 1996 Telugu film Akkada Ammayi Ikkada Abbayi. He is known for films such as Gokulamlo Seeta, Suswagatham, Tholi Prema,Thammudu, Badri, Kushi, Jalsa, Gabbar Singh, Gopala Gopala and Attarintiki Daredi. His 2001 film Kushi was one of the biggest hits ever until then in Telugu cinema, and the pinnacle of Pawan Kalyan’s stardom at the turn of the millennium. Despite highs and lows in his career, his star stature has not diminished. In March 2014, Pawan Kalyan entered into politics, founding the Jana Sena Party.

Kalyan has been married three times: to Nandini from 1997 to 2007, to Renu Desai from 2009 to 2012 and to Anna Lezhneva since 2013. He has a son named Akira Nandan and a daughter named Aadya with Renu Desai and a daughter named Polena Anjana Pawanovna and a son named Mark Shankar Pawanovich with Anna Lezhneva.

3rd generation:

Ram Charan: Son of actor Chiranjeevi, Charan made his debut in the successful action film Chirutha (2007). He rose to prominence with SS Rajamouli’s fantasy action film Magadheera (2009), which held the record of being the highest-grossing Telugu film. His other commercially successful films include Racha (2012), Naayak (2013), Yevadu (2014), Dhruva (2016) and Rangasthalam (2018). One of the highest-paid actors in Telugu cinema, Ram Charan has been featured in Forbes India’s Celebrity 100 list since 2013. He is the cousin of Allu Arjun, Varun Tej, Sai Dharam Tej, Allu Sirish, Niharika Konidela, and Panja Vaisshnav Tej.

Varun Tej: Known for his height and good looks, Varun made his debut as a lead in the film Mukunda (2014). He starred in the critically acclaimed war film Kanche (2015), directed by Krish. His commercially successful films are Fidaa (2017), Tholi Prema (2018), F2: Fun and Frustration (2019) and Gaddalakonda Ganesh (2019). Varun Tej is the son of Nagendra Babu.

Niharika Konidela: Nagendra Babu’s daughter is an actress and television presenter who predominantly works in Telugu films. She made her debut with the film Oka Manasu (2016). The whole Allu-Konidela clan came together in December 2020 for her wedding to Chaitanya Jonnalagadda.

Sai Dharam Tej: The son of Chiranjeevi’s sister Vijaya Durga made his debut with the film Pilla Nuvvu Leni Jeevitham (2014). He has starred in several other films like Subramanyam for Sale, Supreme, Prati Roju Pandage and Chitralahari.

Panja Vaisshnav Tej: Sai Dharam Tej’s brother appeared as a child actor is some of the films of Chiranjeevi and Pawan Kalyan. In 2021, he made his debut as a lead with the film Uppena.

Allu Arjun: Allu Aravind’s son, after his debut in Gangotri (2003), appeared in Sukumar-directed Arya (2004). His role in Arya was his breakthrough. In the following years, he starred in films such as Bunny (2005), Happy (2006) and Desamuduru (2007). His successful films include Race Gurram (2014), Sarrainodu (2016), Duvvada Jagannadham (2017), grossing more than ₹100 crore. His elder brother Venkatesh is a businessman while his younger brother Sirish is an actor. He is married to Sneha Reddy, they have a son named Allu Ayaan and a daughter named Allu Arha.

Allu Sirish: Allu Arjun’s brother debuted as a lead actor with Gouravam (2013) and later went onto appear in films such as Kotha Janta (2014), Srirastu Subhamastu (2016), and Okka Kshanam (2017).

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