Hyderabad: Popular cine director and actor Devadas Kanakala passed away at a private hospital here this evening after a brief illness. He was 74. He is survived by his son Rajiv Kanakala and daughter Sri Lakshmi. His wife Laxmi Devi, a famous character actress, died very recently.
His son Rajiv Kanakala is an actor in Tollywood, while his daughter-in-law Suma is a popular television anchor and compere in various film functions. Devadas began his career in films with K Vishwanath’s “O Seetha Katha” in 1974. He also acted in some 30 films, including Gorintaaku, Siri Siri Muvva, Chiranjeevi’s Gang Leader, Manchu Pallaki. His last film was Mahesh Babu’s Bharath Ane Nenu. Devadas also acted in a Telugu serial called Amrutham.
Born on July 30, 1945 at Kanakala village near Yanam, Devadas completed his graduation in AVN College, Visakhapatnam and studied theatre arts in Andhra University. He worked for some time as a song and drama actor in Publicity Division of the Union Ministry of Information and Broadcasting. He was one of a few Telugu artistes, who studied in Film and Television Institute at Pune. He also worked as a faculty in Adayar Film Institute and Madhu Film Institute, besides as head of the Theatre Arts Department in Telugu University, Hyderabad.
Devadas carved a niche for himself in giving training for actors. Several actors like Rajinikanth, Chiranjeevi, Rajendra Prasad, Subhalekha Sudhakar, Nazr, Pradeep Sakthi, Bhanuchander, Arun Pandyan, Rankee and Raghuvaran were trained under him. Most of the present-day television actors were the students of his film institute