Reasons why 51st Dadasaheb Phalke Award winner Rajinikanth is biggest superstar of Indian cinema

The 51st Dadasaheb Phalke Award will be honoured to superstar Rajinikanth, Union Information and Broadcasting Minister Prakash Javadekar said.

The prestigious 51st Dadasaheb Phalke Award will be honoured to superstar Rajinikanth, Union Information and Broadcasting Minister Prakash Javadekar announced on Thursday. 

Known for his God-like status down South, Rajinikanth enjoys a massive fan following not just down under but also across the states in India and abroad. 

Born as Shivaji Rao Gaekwad in a Marathi family from Bengaluru, Rajinikanth is hailed as the ‘King of Box Office’ and there is a concrete reason behind it. Each time his film is announced, fans wait for its release and ensure that it is a blockbuster hit. It only requires a film to have a Rajinikanth name to be a blockbuster-hit. And so, one can imagine the kind of following and respect he commands among his fans. 

An actor who debuted with Tamil film ‘Apoorva Raagangal’ in 1975, Rajinikanth went on to become a megastar and holds a special place in the hearts of his fans so much so that they worship him. To date, in a career spanning over 4 decades, he has done over 150 films in various languages.

And while he may be the undisputed king of the box office and the ruler of the hearts of thousands of his fans, he is ‘Thalaiva’ for his fans, meaning the leader. 

1. Rajinikanth: Versatile actor

Known for his unique style statement, inimitable punchlines that often have a message or a warning for the film’s antagonist, gravity-defying stunts and charismatic expressions, Rajinikanth can effortlessly play a don in ‘Billa’ to a robot in science fiction action film ‘Enthiran’. 

2. Rajinikanth’s Demi-God status in Tamil Nadu

Widely regarded as one of the most popular actors in the history of Indian cinema, Rajinikanth has primarily worked in Tamil films and thus has a huge fan base in the South Indian state. 
The highest-grossing actor in Tamil cinema and one of the highest-paid actors in India, it is Rajinikanth’s uniquely styled dialogues and idiosyncrasies in films that are to be credited for his larger-than-life, almost super-hero image in films while he maintains a certain modesty in real life. Probably the reason why his fans love him even more.

3. Rajinikanth’s philanthropy work

While most celebrities earn handsomely, not all indulge in charity. But Rajinikanth is known for his philanthropy. In fact, besides the actor himself, his fans, who worship him, follow the star’s footsteps and they have set up an organisation ‘Rajini Makkal Mandram’ which helps the financially unstable and the needy with their medical expenses. 
The actor has graciously donated towards various causes and during times the nation was faced with natural calamities like the Chennai floods. 
According to a news report in, Naman Ramachandran’s during his interview that said that Rajinikanth gives away half of what he earns to charity. He credited ‘Thalaiva’s’ close friend Raja Badhar for the information. 

4. Rajinikanth: Inspiration for millions, a great success story

From working as a bus conductor to striving hard to make it to the top, Rajinikanth’s is a great success story and very inspirational too. He has often credited Kailasam Balachander for his success and has stated that Amitabh Bachchan has been an inspiration for him. For the unversed, Rajinikanth has starred in eleven Tamil remakes of Amitabh Bachchan films and also Telegu remake of Amar Akbar Anthony, Ram Robert Rahim (1980), alongside Sridevi.
It was after ‘Baashha’ that he attained demi-God status.

5. Rajinikanth: Pioneer of the 100-crore club

Not many know that it is Rajinikanth who began the 100-crore club in the Indian film industry. For the uninitiated, S Shankar’s directorial debut Sivaji (2007) was a blockbuster and reportedly the first Indian film to enter the 100-crore club, thus sealing Rajinikanth’s place in Indian cinema as the pioneer of this club. Besides this, that year, Rajinikanth became the highest-paid actor in Asia after Jackie Chan.

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