By Pratishtha Ghosh Last Updated:
Divorces are one of the most painful things about marriage and no matter what, it breaks one's heart to part ways with a person with whom one has spent so much time. However, some relationships have to end as they cannot stand the test of time. Though life goes on, a hidden regret stays in the heart that things could have gone the other way round. One such thing is common in one of the most influential families of the Telugu film industry. Time and again, it has been proved that the Akkineni family has a curse of divorce or failed marriages because a lot of weddings fell apart within the family.
Akkineni Nageshwara Rao, widely known as ANR, was one of the strongest pillars of the Telugu film industry. An actor and producer, he has given massive hits in his 75-year-old career. He has left behind the legacy for his kids, and one of them, Akkineni Nagarjuna has made a niche for himself in the film fraternity. Despite the massive success of Nagarjuna, and his kids, Naga Chaitanya and Akhil Akkineni on the professional front, all of them had troubles in their married life. As South Indian superstar, Naga Chaitanya announced his separation from Samantha Ruth Prabhu, let's delve deep into the members of the Akkineni clan, who had gone through a broken marriage.
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Nagarjuna had married the daughter of famous Telugu film producer, Dr D. Ramanaidu. His wedding with Lakshmi Daggubati was arranged by the family and he had tied the knot in 1984 before becoming a hero. Their parents, Nageshwara Rao and Ramanaidu Daggubati were best friends and had thought of taking this friendship to another level. In 1986, Nagarjuna and Lakshmi were blessed with a boy, Naga Chaitanya. However, their relationship had slowly started to hit a rough patch and they had decided to part ways in 1990 after six years of marital life.
In the '80s, Nagarjuna had worked in a lot of films with Amala Akkineni (then Mukherjee). Little did he know that he would find love in her and decide to start his journey of happily-ever-after once again. Gradually the couple had fallen in love and it was during a work-related trip that Nagarjuna had proposed her marriage and the rest is history. They got married in 1992 and were blessed with a son, Akhil Akkineni in 1994. They make sure that Akhil and Chaitanya never feel that they are each other's stepbrothers and spend some quality time with each other.
Akkineni Nagarjuna's nephew, Sumanth Yarlagadda had married former actress, Keerthi Reddy in August 2004. Keerthi had made her debut in Bollywood opposite Abhishek Bachchan in the movie, Tera Jadoo Chal Gayaa (2000). Later on, Keerthi had worked with Arjun Rampal, Suniel Shetty, Aftab Shivdasani in the film, Pyaar Ishq Aur Mohabbat. She had also acted alongside Anil Kapoor and Shilpa Shetty Kundra in Badhaai Ho Badhaai. However, after two years of their marriage, Sumanth and Keerthi had called it off in 2006.
However, even after their divorce, Sumanth and Keerthi Reddy are on cordial terms and do not hold any hard feelings for each other. A report of DNA had quoted Sumanth as saying:
"We got separated after one year of our marriage. We are two different souls and in that year only, we came to know, that we can’t stay together for a long time. So, with mutual consent we took divorce."
After her wedding with Sumanth had failed, Keerthi Reddy moved on in her life and got married for the second time to an NRI doctor named Karthik N and settled in the US. He stays away from the limelight and after her wedding, she has become a dedicated homemaker and is a mother of two children. On the other hand, a picture of Sumanth's wedding card had gone viral. Speculations were rife that he was getting married to somebody named Pavithra. However, he had quashed the rumours and had cleared that he isn't getting married. Taking to his Twitter handle, he had said:
"Hello everyone. There are rumours that I’m getting married again. I want to give clarity to all of you on this. In real life, I’m not getting married. My next film ia about remarriage and divorce. This is the first time in Telugu with such a premise. During the filming of the movie, a wedding card in my name has come out. That led to the above misunderstandings."
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Sumanth Yarlagada's sister, Supriya Yarlagadda, who is the granddaughter of Akkineni Nageswara Rao (ANR), was married to the late South Indian actor, Charan Reddy. He had worked as an actor in Ishtam in the direction of Vikram K Kumar and Raj Kumar in 2001. Her wedding to him was an inter-caste marriage with the family's consent. However, things did not go well between the duo and she parted ways with him. Though she prefers to stay away from the limelight, she is happily single now. On the other hand, Charan Reddy had died of a heart attack in 2012.
Akkineni Nagarjuna's younger son, Akhil Akkineni was in a happy relationship with the designer, Shriya Bhupal. Not just that, the duo was about to tie the knot in a big fat wedding in Italy in 2017. For the unversed, Shriya and Akhil had dated each other for quite a long time before exchanging the rings in an intimate ceremony. However, the wedding was called off by the Akkineni family and Reddy family (Shriya is GVK Reddy’s granddaughter). Rumour mills were abuzz that the family had sent messages to all their guests to cancel all the reservations and tickets.
Shriya is now married to racing Champion and a health care entrepreneur, Anindith Reddy. On the other hand, Akhil is single and is concentrating on his career in Tollywood. Though the reason behind calling off Akhil Akkineni and Shriya Bhupal's wedding was best known to their families, a source close to the family had attributed a fight between the duo as the major reason behind their fall out. One of Akkineni's aide had revealed:
"They had a huge fight at Hyderabad Airport. Initially, we all thought it's just the usual lovers' tiff, but things haven't been the same between them ever since, that's for sure."
During the shooting of her debut film, Ye Maaya Chesave, Samantha had met her soulmate, Naga Chaitanya, who had played the lead role opposite her. However, in 2014, during the shooting of another film, Autonagar Surya, the two had fallen for each other. It was in 2015, that Chaitanya's father, Nagarjuna had accepted that his son had found a soulmate. From multiplexes to family weddings, the couple was spotted together at a lot of events. Finally, in 2016, Samantha had admitted that she was dating the actor.
On January 29, 2017, Naga Chaitanya and Samantha Akkineni had exchanged their engagement rings at the N-Convention Centre in Hyderabad. Her ivory coloured engagement lehenga from the designer, Kresha Bajaj had made headlines because it had ChaySam's Love story stitched onto it. She had paired the beautiful outfit with an off-shoulder blouse.
On October 6-7, 2017, Chaitanya and Samantha had tied the knot in a two-day ceremony during a destination wedding in Goa. They had followed the South Indian rituals on the first day of their wedding and had also walked down the aisle in a Christian style wedding on the next day. According to a report of Free Press Journal, the stunning couple had spent approximately Rs. 10 crores for their wedding and it was attended by 150 people. The duo had also booked chartered flights for their special guests which had included, Mahesh Babu, Prabhas, Chiranjeevi, Allu Arjun, Ram Charan and a few others.
Since their dreamy wedding, the duo had been showering love on each other and were the epitome of couple goals. On their third wedding anniversary, Samantha had shared a monochrome picture from Chaitanya's cousin, Rana Daggubati's wedding. Posing with arms around each other, the duo had looked stunning and she had penned a heartmelting note that could be read as:
“You are my person and I am yours, that whatever door we come to, we will open it together. Happy anniversary husband @chayakkineni.”
After spending a blissful marital life of more than 3.5 years, the news of trouble in Samantha and Chaitanya's wedding had hit the headlines when The Family Man 2 actress had dropped 'Akkineni' from her name on her social media handles. Not only that, Samantha's absence from her father-in-law, Akkineni Nagarjuna's 62nd birthday bash also did not go unnoticed and all of these were enough to make fans speculate that they have parted ways.
On October 2, 2021, Naga Chaitanya and Samantha Ruth Prabhu had put all the speculations regarding their separation to rest as they had announced their divorce on their respective social media handles. Their joint statement could be read as:
"To all our well-wishers. After much deliberation and thought Chay and I have decided to part ways as husband and wife to pursue our own paths. We are fortunate to have a friendship of over a decade that was the very core of our relationship which we believe will always hold a special bond between us. We request our fans, well-wishers and the media to support us during this difficult time and give us the privacy we need to move on. Thanking you for your support.”
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Naga Chaitanya and Samantha Ruth Prabhu announced their divorce, that had sent shockwaves across Tollywood and amongst their huge fan base. However, this is not the first time that a member of the Akkineni clan is going through a divorce. After rigorous look at the history of the Akkineni family, it seems like they have been cursed or something and therefore, most of the members of the family have gone through a rough patch in their marital life.