Born on 24 April 1929, Rajkumar, is fondly remembered as Nata Saarvabhouma (Emperor of Actors), Bangarada Manushya (Man of Gold), Vara Nata (Gifted Actor) and Rajanna (Brother Raj) amid the Kannada community and remains an iconic superstar from his time.
He passed away at the age of 77 in April 2006.
Rajkumar started his career with his father in a troupe led by noted Gubbi Veeranna in theater, and started his film career with HLN Simha's Bedara Kannappa.
He is also the first Indian actor to have worked in the Indian rendition of popular James Bond in Jedara Bale.
The reverence for the veteran actor was such, that Karnataka saw a situation of near political turmoil when Rajkumar was abducted by sandal smuggler, Veerappan in 2000, who was trying to negotiate the release of some of his men apprehended by authorities.