Who will forget the child who acted in the famous song Chandamama Raave Jabilli Raave in legendary K. Viswanath’s unusual love story, Sirivennela? The girl, Meena, went on to become a great dancer and actress in South Indian cinema.
Meena became a sensation for her roles in films like Muthu, Yejaman and Seetharamayya Gari Manavaralu.
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September 16th, 2019 is Meena’s 43rd birthday. We look at her top 5 performances as an actress.
1. Seetharamayya Gari Manavaralu (1991)
Undoubtedly, this Kranthi Kumar directorial is the best performance by Meena in as many years in her Tollywood career. As the grand daughter of a village patriarch, Seetharamayya (played outstandingly by late ANR,) Meena excelled as a disturbed soul who hides the truth about the death of her father from her grandfather. Meena won the appreciation of many for the movie and also won the Andhra Pradesh State Award (Nandi Award) for Best Actress for the year 1991, in 1992.
2. Chanti (1992)
The eternal love story of a poor boy and a rich girl was used as a template in this remake of the Tamil film Chinna Thambi. Meena played a determined rich girl who loves a village simpleton, played by Venkatesh. The film had a successful soundtrack by Ilaiyaraja.
Meena, with her versatile acting, won the heart of every Telugu cinegoer.
3. Abbaigaru (1993)
The movie is a famous adaptation of the Tamil movie Enga Chinna Rasa by K. Bhagyaraj. The Meena-Venkatesh pair had become a cult pair in the film industry by then. Meena played the role of Sudha, a village girl who molds the mindset of her husband. Her husband, played by Venkatesh, is afraid of his stepmother, played by Jayachitra.
4. Rajeswari Kalyanam (1993)
This lesser known movie of Meena is a classic, with her playing the role of a step daughter to ANR and Vanisri. Meena plays Rajeswari, who dies a tragic death due to the misery she suffers from her stepmother (Jayachitra.) Meena won the State Award for Best Actress for this film, which was her second Nandi Award. This movie, like her Seetharamayya Gari Manavaralu, was directed by Kranthi Kumar.
5. Drushyam (2014)
This remake of the hugely impactful Malayalam movie Drishyam, saw Meena playing a great determined wife, who stands by her husband during testing times. The hit pair of Venkatesh and Meena once again regaled the audience with their measured performance. The movie was directed by veteran actress Sripriya.
Meena is one of the few actresses who had a great innings as a child artiste, as a leading lady and now, as a character actress too. One should appreciate her ability to adapt to changing times, which helped her propel her career to longevity.
We wish Meena a very happy 43rd birthday and an eventful 2019.