Power Star Pawan Kalyan's Inspiring Journey From Movies to Janasena Leader and AP Deputy CM

One thing that was common in Pawan Kalyan’s film and political journey was that defeats and failures never dampened his spirits. Pawan rose from the ashes like a phoenix. “Yeh Pawan nahi hai, aandhi hai” (He is not Pawan, he is a storm), described Prime Minister Narendra Modi, and those words encapsulate and define Pawan’s journey from being a superstar to becoming a politician...
From Actor To Minister: Pawan Kalyan's Inspiring Journey

Pawan Kalyan during his election campaign

“Yeh Pawan nahi hai, aandhi hai” (He is not Pawan, he is a storm), described Prime Minister Narendra Modi recently while introducing actor-politician Pawan Kalyan. Those words encapsulate and define Pawan’s journey from being an actor to becoming a politician. Be it his film journey or his political stint, both haven't been easy. But defeats and failures have never dampened the spirit of the star, who has risen from the ashes like a phoenix.

Tholi Prema Catapulted Pawan To Stardom

Pawan Kalyan made his film debut with the film Akkada Ammayi Ikkada Abbayi in 1996. The EVV Satyanarayana directorial did well at the box office. His subsequent films Gokulamlo Seeta (1997) and Suswagatham (1998) enabled Pawan to score a hat-trick. It was the time Pawan was trying to carve a niche for himself in the industry. It was the romantic drama Tholi Prema (1998) that catapulted Pawan to stardom. Karunakaran's directorial was a runaway hit at the box office and the actor truly announced his arrival in Telugu cinema. Since then, Pawan hasn’t looked back.

Kushi, A Cult Hit

Pawan’s film Badri (2000) was a blockbuster at the box office and he received great acclaim for his portrayal as Nanda. His dialogue and one-liner, “Nuvvu Nanda Aithe Nenu Badri…Badrinath” from the film is still famous among his fans and audience. At a time when Pawan cemented his place in the industry and was building his own fan base, Khushi (2001) was released. The film went on to become one of the highest grossers in the Telugu film industry. The SJ Suryah directorial was a rage and Pawan was able to build his own fan base, akin to the fan base of his brother, Megastar Chiranjeevi. This was also the time when Pawan started to endorse brands and was part of several commercials.

Dull Phase

After Khushi, Pawan made his directorial debut with the film Johnny (2003) apart from starring in it. The film turned out to be a flop at the box office. His subsequent films like Gudumba Shankar, Balu, Bangaram and Annavaram too failed to create any magic at the ticket window. It was Trivikram Srinivas’s directorial Jalsa (2007) that gave Pawan the much-needed break-through at the box office. The film ended Pawan’s dry spell and made him come back into the reckoning. But films like Puli, Teen Maar and Panjaa did not add any value to Pawan’s box office stamina.
What’s interesting to see is that Pawan’s stardom kept growing with each film irrespective of the result. The actor also indulged in several social and philanthropic activities that brought him closer to his fans.

Gabbar Singh And Attrarintiki Daredi Showed Pawan’s BO Power

Harish Shankar’s directorial Gabbar Singh (2012) was a sensation and ended Pawan’s flop streak. The film was declared an industry hit and fans of Powerstar claimed that they were able to take a breather after a decade. The action entertainer proved why Pawan is still a phenomenon at the box office. The 2013 film Attrarintiki Daredi was perhaps the biggest blockbuster in Pawan Kalyan’s career. Directed by Trivikram Srinivas, the family drama scripted history at the box office.

Political Debut in 2024

Pawan Kalyan started his political career in 2008 as the president of Yuvarajyam, the youth wing of Praja Rajyam Party which was started by his elder brother Chiranjeevi. He actively campaigned for the party, which Chiranjeevi later merged with the Congress. Shocked by his brother’s decision, Pawan took a break from political life.
But in 2014, Pawan floated his own political party Jana Sena. Although he did not contest in the 2014 general elections, he openly supported Chandrababu Naidu led-TDP which came to power in the residue state of Andhra Pradesh. Later, political differences cropped up between Pawan and Babu prompting the former to contest the AP Assembly elections separately. Pawan’s Jana Sena party lost badly in the elections and the actor-politician drew a blank. He lost the two seats he contested in the elections.

Pawan Was The X Factor In 2024

During the run up to the 2024 elections, Pawan Kalyan decided to join TDP party to bring down the YS Jagan-led YSRCP. Pawan’s JanaSena contested in 21 Assembly seats and also in two Parliaments seats – his party won all the seats it contested and scripted new history. Many political analysts say that Pawan was the X factor in bringing the alliance (JanaSena, TPD and BJP) back into power.
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